Priceline CEO Glenn Fogel – Artificial Intelligence Will Make Travel Seamless
For several years there are rumors how travel brands will use new technology to make travel seamless. It will not happen next year. It sounds like we’ll have to wait awhile. Perhaps someday we’ll get there.
Priceline Group CEO Glenn Fogel said he hopes someday his company’s artificial intelligence platform knows customers better than the travel agent of the 1960s, ’70s, and ’80s.
“That new system will never forget what your preferences are, will know you even better and will be able to look throughout the world at everything,” Fogel said. the AI of the future will activate when it knows a traveler’s flight is delayed or canceled. At that point, he said, it might rebook customers, possibly on another airline. The traveler wouldn’t have to ask.
Many airlines already have similar functionality, but Fogel’s vision for goes further. Priceline can control all aspects of the travel experience, including flights, hotels, cars, and restaurant reservations.
Once it knew a customer was on a different flight, Priceline might contact the traveler’s car service, to change the airport pick-up time. If the new flight arrival time meant the traveler would reach the new city during rush hour, the platform might suggest light rail instead.
If the traveler booked a restaurant , through OpenTable, owned by Priceline, system could move dinner an hour or two later.
At the hotel arrival could be seamless, since the front desk would know when the customer would show up.
“More than anything, when I finally get to that hotel, I don’t want to wait 10 minutes to check in,” he said.
It seems simple enough. But Fogel said he’s a realist. The technology, he said, is not yet sophisticated enough to make it possible.
“We’re not so close,” he said. “But we’re getting there.”
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