TUI: Discover your smile or your frown?

Last week I went on a holiday that was bought from TUI.nl. The holiday was awesome and the hotel where we stayed had the best services and, the most important thing, I got tanned (Yaaaay!!!).

However, the experience with TUI made me think of the entire customer journey in the travel industry and of how they (and all the other travel companies, probably) could improve their services.

My starting point in this was to take a best guess of what the customer journey is once you booked the holiday and how can you support online and offline each stage. This is what I came up with:

  1. Book the holiday: after you do all of the research about the best offers on the market and once you decided to book the holiday, most probably you’re going the be very excited about this. To keep this excitement alive, TUI has a nice counter to your holiday. Thumbs up for that!
  2. Research: of course that you have an idea about what you can do at the new destination. However for most of the people, this is when they actually start looking into the specifics of what they can do during their holiday.

My suggestion would be, that instead of showing me the weather, why don’t you show me a few recommendations about what I could do there.

You can also think of this as a possibility to up-sell: create your own packages with the hotels/resorts and you can recommend those to me as nice to do activities. For sure, I’ll be very receptive as everyone wants to do cool stuff during their holiday.

3. Travel to the destination + back home

The same screen as above was shown to us while we were preparing to travel to the destination and back home. The travel companies know when you are leaving for your holiday, so I wonder why they don’t use this information to support you through the entire journey, especially during the more stressful ones.

My suggestion would be, that in this case, instead of having the weather card as a main focus, show me a card that can lead me to all the travel documents that I need in one click (such as plane tickets).

Waiting in line for the baggage drop off turned out to be a frustrating experience because apparently we didn’t have the right documents (even though one of TUI agents told us that we can queue with what we had). So after queueing for 40 minutes, we had to start from scratch in another line where the boarding passes had to be printed. This could have been easily avoided if we could access the right travel documents within the app in a very easy way.

4. Reach destination

Because we booked the holiday through them, we had to hand over to the hotel the voucher from the agency.

So, in this case, it would have been super useful to see a card leading me to the voucher that I needed. You are (or should be aware) of all of this process and you should make sure that my experience is seamless and that I don’t feel all of these as a burden.

This is another good moment when you can show me suggestions for things that I can do: I’m on holiday, my mood is set to discovery and doing new things, so why not take advantage of this?

These being said, I want to make one last thing clear: it’s not that TUI doesn’t have almost all the features that I talked about above. It’s just that they make you work really hard to find them.

I think that a seamless customer experience (online and offline) through all of these processes can make a huge difference and can bring back a lot of new and existing customers.

So TUI, I guess it’s up to you if your customers will discover their smile or their frown.

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