Reports say AI will shape the future of travel and tourism

by: Felicity Cousins | April 22, 2024

WORLDWIDE: Two more reports from the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) and Microsoft have highlighted how Artificial Intelligence (AI) will be used to shape the future of travel and tourism.

The reports were launched during the global tourism body’s participation at the UN General Assembly in New York.

According to WTTC, AI has the power to revolutionise how businesses in the Travel & Tourism sector operate, offering opportunities for growth and innovation.

Responsible Artificial Intelligence (AI): Overview of AI Risks, Safety & Governance and Artificial Intelligence (AI): Global Strategies, Policies & Regulations, are the final two reports of a series on Artificial Intelligence from WTTC.

Responsible Artificial Intelligence (AI) looks into the potential risks associated with AI deployment and offers strategies for establishing frameworks that promote transparency, accountability, and fairness. 

From addressing bias and discrimination to ensuring human oversight of AI systems, the aim of this report is to empower organisations and show them how to use AI responsibly.

The fourth and final report, Artificial Intelligence (AI): Global Strategies, Policies & Regulations provides a detailed overview of the AI ecosystem across key countries and international organisations. 

It shows how policymakers are navigating the AI landscape and shaping regulations and strategies to foster AI innovation, while ensuring its ethical and responsible use.

Julia Simpson, WTTC President & CEO, said: “In a rapidly evolving landscape, AI emerges as a catalyst for positive change. The insights provided in these reports demonstrate that AI is not just a technological advancement; it is a strategic tool that can personalise customer experiences, drive sustainable improvements, and shape the future of Travel & Tourism.

“AI is already being used across our sector with incredible results. Several major hotel groups including Iberostar are using AI to monitor and reduce food waste, which recently resulted not only in a 27 per cent cost saving but prevented thousands of kilos of unwanted food going to landfill.”

Iberostar reduces food waste by nearly a third this year


Julie Shainock, managing director, travel, transport, & logistics industry for Microsoft said: “We are seeing AI being embraced across the entire travel eco-system enhancing the customer experience, the employee experience and also driving more efficiency in operations, but we know we are only at the beginning of the journey.”

However WTTC recognises that despite the sector’s increasing recognition of AI’s potential, challenges such as AI-skilled workforce shortages in the Travel & Tourism sector are still an issue and act as potential barriers to adoption.

Members of the WTTC can access the reports for free. Non Members can buy the reports separately. Click here for more information.

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