Big Data in Travel 2016
It has been several years since the concept of Big Data emerged from computing circles into the mainstream. While Big Data technologies and techniques had been brewing for years, it was not until 2012 that the business world collectively grasped its potential, triggering a frenzy of excitement. Big Data was suddenly everywhere, and it promised to foster unprecedented intelligence, power real-time personalization and transform our daily lives.
As with many significant technological developments, it is easy to imagine the possibilities, but much more difficult to actualize them. While the term “Big Data” may indeed be overused and overhyped, the ability to analyze and leverage the growing quantities of digital data surrounding us will play a fundamental role in shaping the future. Travel companies theoretically have access to a wealth of customer information, from clickstream and loyalty data to PNRs, customer service/CRM databases, traveler reviews, social media content and more. The challenge is to bring the most important customer data together and leverage it in meaningful ways.
This article surveys the current state of Big Data in travel, and explores the related technologies that are likely to drive the most impactful data-driven applications in the years to come. The article provides an overview of Big Data adoption and use cases within travel, highlighting examples of how startups and established travel companies are employing Big Data.