October 2020 \ Business & Investment \ TOURISM AND HOSPITALITY INDUSTRY

According to a report published by the World Tourism ...

By Nayan Chakravarty

Closer home, the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FICCI), observed this day with discussions on strategies for reviving the tourism industry. In the virtual conference attended by dignitaries from the government and industry, the consensus, however, was clearly on shifting focus to domestic markets until resurgence of international demand. To the millions of people dependent on the travel and hospitality industry for their livelihood, both of the above essentially conveyed the same message—the road to recovery would be long and hard. The wait for the tide to turn isn’t quite over.

A critical question on everyone’s mind now is whether technology can help save the day? Some industry segments are hopeful, and they are looking forward towards leveraging it. As part of their service automation initiatives, major players in the field of hospitality are now aggressively implementing contact-less interfaces. Customers preferring end-to-end self-service would now have the option to do so. Intelligent voice assistants, chat-bots, and robotic handlers can take care of every aspect of a customer’s entire stay, starting from check-in, room service, and house keeping all the way through to payments and final check-out. Such offerings can be made available as an option, but during times like the current pandemic these become indispensable in mitigating risks of virus transmission due to physical proximity.

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