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The industry 4.0 revolution has bolstered development in each sector including tourism. As the tourism industry plays a crucial role in the economical growth of nations, communities worldwide are adopting modern approaches to improve tourism. As per research conducted in September 2019 by the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), the tourism and travel industry has been valued at USD 8.8 trillion in 2018 and it generates 10.4% of the global GDP. The industry is provisioning 10% of jobs worldwide. Smart tourism is emerging as a developed concept which rely on the core technologies such as cloud computing, ICT, virtual reality, mobile communication, internet of things (IoT), location intelligence, and artificial intelligence. Smart tourism is a context of smart cities that have aimed to influence tourism operations and tourist’s experiences by using modern technologies.
Advanced technologies are enhancing an online tourism platform by integrating multiple functionalities such as location tracking, reservation, payment gateways, and others into it. Such additional functionalities are helps to offer enhanced communication and personalized experience to the tourists which is promoting smart tourist market growth. The increasing adoption of smartphone and mobile devices are supporting demand for the smart tourist mobile application. Massive investments by the government across the world to develop tourism places using advanced technology is likely to drive substantial growth of smart tourism market. For instance, In August 2020, Uttarakhand Tourism Development Board has planned to resume its tourist movement through the smart city online portal to assist the hospitality industry in its efforts to continue operations safely and alleviate risks arising out of the COVID pandemic. Besides, progressive approaches of society towards the sustainable environmental ecosystem is ensuring the smart infrastructure demand. Apart from this, the trend of improving residents’ quality of life using advanced technologies is further supporting smart infrastructure development. Hence, people's progressive approaches towards sustainable life and the environment are likely to showcase excellent growth in the smart tourism market in the coming years.
Key Market Driver -
• Government initiatives to develop tourism industry • Increasing popularity of smart infrastructure
Key Market Restraint -
• Lack of awareness
Some of the key players summarized in the smart tourism market includes InnoQuant Strategic Analytics, S.L., Booking Holdings Inc., TripAdvisor LLC, AudioConexus Inc., Expedia, Inc, Kayak, QUNR, Ctrip, Orbitz,, MakeMyTrip, TravelZoo, Sabre Corporation, Opodo, Travelgenio, Voyages, Webjet, Wotif.com, and others.
Key companies are focusing on expanding their business portfolio by utilizing various advanced technologies for the development of smart tourism. Emerging players are raising their funding for developing various smart tourism applications. In January 2020, China-based travel startup firm ‘Chengdu Zhongke Daqi Software Co., Ltd.’ has raised a 5 million funds for the development of smart tourism. Key players are proposing attractive, seasonable tour packages and discounts for travelers to promote the usage of online smart tourism portals. Also, strategic partnerships of tourist companies with the hotels, restaurants, and travel agencies are helping them to upscale and expand their tourism business.
North America is anticipated to contribute a significant share in the global tourism market owing to the substantial investments by private tourism agencies to offer a better experience to tourists. Increasing political support for the development of the tourism industry is likely to drive market growth. Fast pacing technology developments are further expected to boom market growth. North America is a significant element of the smart infrastructure industry. New York, Seattle, San Francisco, and Boston are the leading cities in the adoption of smart infrastructure projects such as smart cities, smart homes, smart transportation, smart agriculture, and many more. Thus, the rapid development of smart infrastructure projects is the prime factor that supports the growth of the smart tourism market across North America.
Europe is likely to showcase a significant contribution to the growth of the market due to the government's initiatives towards the development of the tourism industry. In October 2019, the European Capital of Smart Tourism announced its resolution to promote Europe as a smart tourism destination in the European tourism forum. The announcement is validating the enormous support of the European government to the smart tourism market.
Asia-Pacific is likely to hold a noticeable share in the global smart tourism market owing to the rapidly developing tourism industry across various Asian countries. China, India, Australia, Singapore, and many more Asian countries are showcasing their support to evolve the tourism industry to strengthen their economical growth. For instance, Bhubaneswar, a city from India has established a smart city framework by developing various smart applications such as a smart park, smart Janpath, integrated public service center, intelligent traffic control system, and many more. Hence, such infrastructural developments in smart city projects are likely to drive smart tourism market growth across Asia-Pacific.
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