Big Data

Roles, Opportunities and Challenges Posed by Big Data in Tourism

Who doesn’t adore a getaway? We want to treat ourselves to taking a quick break and getting away from our hectic life frequently. But have we ever questioned what precisely happens in the tourism sector behind the scenes? How are decisions and actions in the sector motivated?

Due to its broad scope, the tourism industry encompasses a variety of distinct sectors under its wing, providing a crucial source of income for each of these sectors. They broadly comprise the transportation, entertainment, lodging, food, and beverage sectors and all of their related ones. Big Data is one element that is present and has a foothold in all these industries.

What is Big Data and How is it Used?

Combining the data gathered from numerous consumer centres and using it to create a clear marketing strategy that can be applied to the target audience, big data, or data in high volume plays a crucial part in assessing the various travel trends.

There is enough room for data storage thanks to big data technologies like Hadoop, MongoDB, Rainstar, and cloud-based analytics (for a deeper grasp of the topic, check out our blog on Hadoop vs MongoDB). These technological advancements present information obtained from various sources in an orderly and structured way that helps companies in the travel and tourism sector make quick decisions in response to the various demands of the customers.

Utilization of Big Data

Big Data is being used successfully in several tourism-related fields. They consist of:

Traveling Robots: Travel bots are a newly developed feature that engages with customers and helps them make reservations using messaging systems like Facebook Messenger or by offering automated customer support on the websites of travel agencies. Artificial intelligence (AI)-driven, multilingual, and always available. The travel bots can plan a trip, organise it, and even provide suggestions while working quickly and efficiently to save the user’s time and money.

Personalized Marketing: The target audience is so varied and heterogeneous that using Big Data correctly becomes essential. Big Data helps in understanding the target audience’s demographics and the associated geographic, behavioural, and psychographic aspects to spot marketing opportunities and create an effective marketing strategy. This enables the distribution of more specialised and targeted promotional content.

Boosting Customer Experience: The effective use of big data contributes to improving customer experience. Data collected from clients about their opinions of a certain brand include interactions on social media, reviews posted online, and information about the services used. This information clarifies which services are most frequently used, which are used infrequently, and which are most likely to be requested. In light of this information, businesses can better understand where to focus their investments and what new services to provide.

Optimization Of Route: It can be challenging to plan a vacation while taking into account several variables, including the destinations, the traveller’s schedule, his or her working hours, and the distance. Route optimization is useful in this situation. To fully satisfy the consumer, its primary goals are to reduce the cost and distance of travel and to manage the journey’s time efficiently.

Challenges

While offering the tourism industry limitless potential and prospects, big data also presents significant operational issues, particularly regarding storing, handling, securing, and ownership of the data.

Without the users’ knowledge or consent, private customer data is frequently shared between organisations for research, polling, and other purposes. This compromises the users’ right to privacy and increases the likelihood of misusing personal data. Big Data’s vulnerability to hackers and cyberattacks, coupled with insufficient security measures, raises concerns about the data’s confidentiality and integrity.

Big Data ownership is a significant, complicated challenge. On this, the law of the European Union is still ambiguous and imprecise. The data is typically thought to belong to both the website owner and the user. As a result, Data Ownership develops into a complicated problem that raises concerns for organisations and politicians about the accuracy and ownership of the data.

Despite being huge and complicated, the current databases cannot accommodate this amount of data. While most tourism businesses use relational databases to arrange their huge data into rows and columns, using the same method with various data types is challenging.

This increases the demand for more sophisticated hardware for processing and storing data and more sophisticated software to handle big data. A qualified and trained workforce with knowledge of applied mathematics, algorithms, big data processing platforms, and various complex jobs is also necessary for proper data management.

Final Thoughts

Big Data is discussed in this article, along with its importance to the travel and tourism sector. It clarifies what Big Data is and enlightens readers on a couple of its technologies. It talks about the use of big data in tourism and the different tourism industries that use it and then highlight some of the difficulties that come with using big data in the tourism industry.

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