There’s no denying that consumers crave convenience. Innovations that make life easier are constantly being developed and the public welcomes them into their lives with welcome arms ─ from cheese graters to Dyson vacuum cleaners (other vacuum cleaner brands are available). Innovation is somewhat of a buzzword in travel insurance and beyond, and innovations in the sector are expediting processes, improving consumer retention and bringing travel insurance into the 21st Century.
The vast majority of leisure travellers who are thinking of buying travel products, services or experiences embrace innovation in travel
AIG Travel, which provides travel insurance and assistance solutions, recently conducted a poll on innovation in travel over the past century and found that, on the whole, travellers care about whether the products on offer to them are innovative. Indeed, 73 per cent of leisure travellers said that they care ‘a lot’ or ‘somewhat’ about whether the products are innovative.
Jeff Rutledge, CEO of AIG Travel, commented on the findings: “Our research showed that the vast majority of leisure travellers who are thinking of buying travel products, services or experiences embrace innovation in travel, although some people express different preferences regarding travel innovation, based on their age.”
Generally speaking, the older demographic was found to be more resistant to embracing innovation than millennials, with millennials being three times as likely (15 per cent versus five per cent) as traditionalists (aged 74 and over) to ‘eagerly await’ an innovation in a travel-related service that they’ve used consistently. Overall, though, 79 per cent of poll respondents said that they are ‘pleasantly surprised’ or ‘fairly comfortable’ when they learn that something has changed or is about to change, indicating that a majority welcome innovation.
All this talk of innovation is well and good but what are some of the most exciting innovations to emerge in the travel and travel insurance industries? When asked, 79 per cent of consumers named the Wright brothers’ first flight as the single most innovative travel development over the past century. Second on the list of impressive innovations is the debut of the GPS car navigation system (56 per cent), followed by the first commercial passenger flight (50 per cent), the advent of online travel booking (43 per cent) and the debut of wheeled suitcases (33 per cent).
Respondents seemed to have more faith in new innovations released by providers that have been around for 75 years or more (60 per cent). This was particularly true among baby boomers (25 per cent), and not so much among millennials (seven per cent).
79 per cent of consumers named the Wright brothers’ first flight as the single most innovative travel development over the past century
What a time to be alive, witnessing new innovations in a flourishing industry. Like it or loathe it, the travel insurance industry will continue to evolve, with novel innovations and new minds breathing fresh air into the sector.