ITB Berlin: Travel Technology boosts the online travel market

Published on : Thursday, January 23, 2020

With its wide range of topics including AI, self-driving cars, podcasts, blogging and digital nudging, the programme of the eTravel World at ITB Berlin 2020 has every trend covered. As a key topic concerning the future of the global travel industry, digitalisation is a main focus at ITB Berlin. At lectures, sessions, forums and workshops, the ITB Berlin Convention deals with all aspects of the current and future technological challenges and applications that face global tourism. At the eTravel World halls 6.1, 7.1b and 7.1c., numerous exhibitors are presenting technological solutions, including reservation systems, global distribution systems, payment methods and travel agency software. This year the eTravel Stage in hall 6.1 and the eTravel Lab in hall 7.1 are again the focal point of the eTravel World, with its short distances between event venues. In Hall 10.2 at the VR Lab the focus is on Virtual and Augmented Reality. Additional technology exhibitors are represented in halls 5.1, 8.1 and 10.1.


Outstanding speakers at the eTravel Lab and on the eTravel Stage

Kicking off the programme at the eTravel Lab on 4 March is Toni Stork of OMMAX who will talk about handling numbers and statistics and the right way to conduct an analysis in respect of the travel market in the digital age (10.30 a.m.). Also at the Lab, Jan Gerlach, CEO of Peakwork, will talk about the future of package travel (11.15 a.m.). At 11.30 a.m. Jörg Müller, managing director of Wirecard, will explain how payments can be used as a new source of data (eTravel Stage). At a panel at the eTravel Lab, together with participants from China, Josep Wang of TravelDailyChina will analyse the prospects for outbound tourism (12 noon). Also on day one, overtourism, one of the most pressing issues concerning the travel industry, will be on the agenda twice, at 12.45 and 3 p.m. Eric Mencke of WeGoEU will explain the best ways and approaches for tourism professionals to engage with Chinese visitors (2.00 p.m. eTravel Stage). Afterwards, Malte Hannig of xpose360 will look at how to increase turnover and profits in tourism using digital tools and methods (3 p.m., eTravel Stage). Day one will conclude with a workshop on revenue management for In-Destination Services at 5 p.m. at the eTravel Lab.


One technological application that has acquired major importance for countries and destinations is geocaching. Michel Durrieu of the Regional Tourist Board of Nouvelle-Aquitaine will reveal how the region on the French Atlantic coast uses this technology aid to help achieve success (5 March, 11.15 a.m., eTravel Lab). Jan Starke, Travel Industry Lead at Facebook, will present Facebook’s vision for the future, in order to minimise the friction caused by customers’ ever-increasing expectations – including by creating one’s own travel brands. Maksim Izmaylov, CEO & Founder, Winding Tree will exclusively launch a new product, a major breakthrough milestone, that takes the benefits of blockchain from a developer tech environment to the actionable benefits for end users and businesses and business people (6 March, 11.30 a.m., eTravel Stage).


The eTravel World is hosting not only workshops to provide visitors with information on the latest tourism developments, but new communication formats and presentations as well. In 2020 the DATA TALKS Forum at the eTravel Lab is taking place for the first time (6 March, 10.30 a.m.). This is where participants will discuss questions regarding data-driven business models, data analysis and personalisation. Olivier Krüger of LH Systems will present promising travel technology trends, among other topics, and discuss these at the panel to follow. Also celebrating its debut is the Hot Seat, at which Ralf Eggert, managing director of Travello, will take his place and examine language assistants (5 March, 5 p.m., eTravel Stage).


Professional hosts should make a note of 5 March, 2 to 6 p.m., on their calendar. Revenue management, sustainability and online sales are the topics on the agenda at the Lab of the Hospitality Tech Forum – representatives of Suitepad and Bookitgreen will also be taking part. Prior to this event, Katharina Hahn and Katrin Krietsch of Spirit Legal will dwell on the subject of hotel bookings in the age of PSD II (12 midday – 12.30 p.m.).


The VR Lab has become a successful satellite of the eTravel World in Hall 10.2 where, on all three days of the show and at some 12 sessions, destination managers and marketeers can find out about practical uses for suitable Virtual and Augmented Reality apps and technologies. The first scheduled event is an analysis of the status quo on 4 March at 12 midday, and on 5 March at 1 p.m. the subject will be the opportunities that VR training can offer.


New sponsors providing information on the full spectrum of app-based payment solutions, as well as data analyses, on the eTravel Stage and stands in Halls 6.1 and 7.1b include, among numerous others, Aiosell, Alice, Audienceserv, Barzahlen, Consultix, GoQuo, passportscan, Saba, Schneidergeo, trbo, Winding Tree and Guide2. This year the lounges of GIATA, the Hospitality Industry Club and Travelport are once again places where one can meet and network.


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