Press Release | 15.02.23

ΙΝSETE: 12 digital technology applications available in the tourism and hospitality sector

The presentation of 12 digital technology applications available in the tourism sector and hotel businesses, from very simple digital screens to advanced robots and the Internet of Things, is included, among other things, in the new study of the Institute of SETE.

The report presents some of the numerous technological solutions that hospitality companies can utilise, the tasks they could be used for, their advantages and disadvantages for the companies, tourists and employees..

The selection of twelve technological solutions, ranging from very basic digital displays to sophisticated robots and the Internet of things, was driven by technology’s applicability to hotels, restaurants or travel agencies, its current level of adoption by tourism and hospitality companies, and the area of application of the technology (front-of-house and/or back-of-house). A practical guide is also included  for the introduction of technological solutions in tourism and hospitality companies.

The report focuses on some of the digital technologies in tourism and hospitality, namely digital displays, kiosks, mobile applications, smart appliances, intelligent automation, chatbots, biometric technologies, voice-controlled virtual assistants, virtual and augmented reality, drones, robots, and the internet of things. Finally, a list of exhibitions on digital technologies for tourism and hospitality companies is provided to help managers in their investment decisions.

The need to adopt a holistic rather than a technical perspective toward digital technologies

Based on the report, tourism/hospitality managers need to adopt a holistic rather than a technical perspective toward digital technologies. They have to evaluate not only the advantages and disadvantages of technologies per se (i.e. technical perspective) but they must assess the role of culture, the market positioning of the company, its size and service operations, partners’ requirements and competitors’ actions, solution’s compatibility and integration with the currently used technologies in the company and many other factors. The successful implementation of technologies in a hospitality company requires that it has a clear technology strategy that drives its technology investment decisions. Otherwise, the company may end up with technological solutions it does not need, it underutilises, customers and/or employees do not want to use, or with solutions that are not integrated with each other and practically create more work for the employees.

The study  focuses on the application of technology in tourism both from the visitor (demand) and from the business side. From the viewpoint of the tourist, technologies are used in every stage of a tourist trip . The role of technology is also different in these stages. It is evident that some technologies (e.g. smartphones, websites and social media) can be used in all stages of the trips while other will have a greater role in a particular stage (e.g. transportation vehicles, robots and kiosks during the trip). The customers are interested in the easy use of technology, its security, interactivity, reliability and the value it brings to their travel experience.

From the perspective of the hospitality company, the huge variety of technologies can be applied in each of its four functional areas: operations, human resource management, marketing and financial management.

It should be noted that INSETE systematically invests in the investigation of critical factors that already have a key role in the developments of the tourism sector with the aim of continuously strengthening resilience and adaptability for businesses and destinations. Sustainability, digital transformation, human resources and the use of data for evidence-based information are among the Institute’s strategic priorities. A connecting link of the above priorities is the study “Greek Tourism 2030″. Action Plans” which sets the national strategy for the evolution of tourism. The study “Tourism and Hotel Technologies” is part of the promotion of the digital transformation of the sector, as described in the INSETE and Accenture study: “Digital Transformation of Greek Tourism – A Strategic Roadmap” as well as in the Action Plans.