Agents undergo digital remake

SINGAPORE, 10 July 2018: Four travel agencies in Singapore are back in school learning how to embrace the digital economy and adapt to an expanding online travel market.

Four travel agencies were selected to participate in the programme that runs through to August; EU Holidays, Pegasus Travel, Siam Express and Royal Wings.

The online travel market is growing by an estimated 13% annually, according to a report ‘The New Digital Traveller*, but travel agents are in danger of being left behind.

FinLab, a joint venture between United Overseas Bank and SGInnovate, is partnering with the Singapore Tourism Board and National Association of Travel Agents Singapore to curate the programme. Together they will assist local travel agents migrate to digital business platforms and achieve digital competence.

Through the three-month acceleration programme, the four travel agencies are learning how to identify areas that hinder growth and can be resolved through technology.

During the programme, the travel agencies draw on the expertise and hands-on guidance provided by The FinLab and its network of industry experts, mentors and technology leaders.

To deepen their digital capabilities, they will also be introduced to solution providers, particularly those in the areas of data analytics and digital marketing. These experts will help the travel agencies identify and pilot the most appropriate and innovative solutions to address their challenges.

NATAS president Steven Ler, said: “As we move into the digital economy, it is important for the travel industry to innovate to ensure it continues to enjoy growth opportunities in the long-term. One of the ways to do this is by collaborating with partners that have the expertise to help our travel agents develop digital competences.”

STB director travel agents and tourist guides, Ong Ling Lee added: ” We hope that through the practical guidance provided by this acceleration programme, travel agents will be encouraged to take the first step towards achieving their growth ambitions.”

The digital business transformation programme commenced 11 June and will close August 2018.

*The New Digital Traveller, Criteo, https://www.criteo.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/New-Digital-Traveler-EN.pdf.