ITB features tomorrow’s technology trends

At the eTravel World at ITB Berlin visitors to the eTravel Stage and eTravel Lab can again find out about the innovations of the future and their potential impact on the travel industry. With its wealth of knowledge about tomorrow’s technology this marketplace is the most important in this segment, and can be found in Halls 6.1 and 7.1c. The focus will be on future-oriented topics such as the blockchain, social media and voice recognition. New events this year include the Hospitality Tech Forum, featuring hospitality industry topics, and the Start-up Day in cooperation with Verband Internet Reisevertrieb (VIR), Germany’s leading association for the online travel industry. On 7 March 2018 at 10.30 a.m. on the stage in Hall 6.1 David Ruetz, head of ITB Berlin, and the humanoid robot Pepper will jointly open the eTravel World.

This year, for the first time, exclusive hosts for the day will present the programme, among them the entrepreneur and consultant Axel Jockwer and Prof. Dr. Claudia Brözel of Fachhochschule Eberswalde. After a brief welcome by the Hospitality Industry Club the Wednesday will kick off with a lecture entitled ‘Can curiosity beat robots?’ by Julia Jung and Stefan Niemeyer of neusta eTourism. The two experts will examine the elements needed for artificial intelligence to awaken users’ curiosity. Using concrete examples of best practices they will demonstrate how so-called curiosity marketing can be successful. In his lecture Alex Bainbridge, editor and CTO of DestinationCTO, will talk about driverless cars and their marketing potential for tour operators. Afterwards, Tanja Weinekötter of Marketing + Event Support will examine the possibilities for using social media as a booking tool.

Thursday, 8 March 2018 will witness the launch of a new event. From 2 to 5.30 p.m. at the eTravel World the ITB Hospitality Tech Forum at the eTravel Lab will take place for the first time. The afternoon’s events will be hosted by Nick Vivion, the editorial director of tnooz. Events will include a lecture by Conichi founder and CEO Maximilian Waldmann who will illustrate why a certain ‘sexy’ image is still needed for business travel. Following this, Andriew Lim of the Hotel School Den Haag will examine the challenges and opportunities of the blockchain. Using concrete examples he will demonstrate successful uses of this new technology. In other lectures speakers will look at artificial intelligence in the context of the hospitality industry, personalised pricing policies and individual communications between hotels and their customers.

On Friday, in cooperation with Verband Internet Reisevertrieb (VIR), the focus will be entirely on industry newcomers. At the newly launched eTravel Start-up Day company founders from Europe, America and Asia will meet on the eTravel Stage in Hall 6.1. At a start-up competition and several sessions the new digital community will present its travel technology innovations. On Wednesday the VIR will also act as partner of the Investors Panel.

This year the eTravel World was able to secure tnooz as its exclusive media partner. During the course of ITB Berlin 2018 its journalists will be conducting numerous interviews with fascinating industry personalities and streaming them live. Sponsors and partners of the eTravel World include amongst others Aeroguest, AirDNA, Berner+Becker, Emarsys, Flightroutes, GDX Travel, Hospitality Industry Club, Juvigo, Myhotel, Outdooractive, Safecharge, SDL, travelport, uCloudlink, MTA Masai, Vsourz, 365 Secom Italia, Sojern, Teleticketing and Phocuswright.