Book Me Bob, a local start-up, has already secured over 20 forward-thinking international hotel groups across four countries - Australia, Indonesia, India and New Zealand. These include the award-winning Hotel Grand Windsor by Mgallery, Porters Hotel, Jet Park Hotels Auckland Airport in New Zealand, The Jambuluwuk Hotel Group, Tijili Hotels, Karma Kandara Resort and Sun Island Hotels Bali in Indonesia, the Jasper Hotel in Melbourne and Hotel Landmark Shimla in India.

The age of AI is here, and Book Me Bob is the first company in the world to perfectly match the capability of human-trained artificial intelligence to the needs of consumers and hotels around the world. Born out of the need to adapt or be left behind, Book Me Bob is the up-and-coming premier digital assistant trained by hoteliers for hoteliers to help make the customer experience seamless.

This New Zealand start-up is not only doing good things in the domestic market, but also helping put our country on the map by enabling hotel owners to take back control from intermediaries. In addition to being the first company to use human-trained AI to help complete the customer journey and improve the overall experience of hotel users, Book Me Bob promises to improve margins for operators in one of the world’s most competitive industries, by offering up-selling and cross-selling beyond the simple booking experience.

Considering tourism is New Zealand’s biggest export industry, contributing $16.2 billion (5.8 per cent) to the gross domestic product (GDP)[1], Book Me Bob is using technology to positively elevate tourism in New Zealand.

The global hotel industry is in an unprecedented time of change, with disruptive technology potentially forcing the reinvention of systems, procedures and communication with customers in the sector.

In the past, you would call a hotel to ask questions and book your room. Then came the internet, revolutionising the system and opening up doors to intermediaries. With these intermediaries also came high commission rates charged (in some regions up to 35%), adding further pressure. Now, Book Me Bob uses the power of AI to offer an even better, faster and more cost-effective experience to hotel customers and owners alike.

As a solution that is customer-facing and responsive to what customers want, Book Me Bob also has a user-friendly back-end dashboard for hotel staff to operate. It aims to empower people to take control and have the best possible experience.

Book Me Bob sees itself as the answer to this. How? By continually using the expertise of some of the most-experienced hotel experts in the industry to train a virtual concierge (chatbot) set to be the Xero of the hotel industry. It brings together the best of both worlds: hoteliers and technology experts knowing what customers and hotels alike need.

CEO and Co-Founder of Book Me Bob, David Thompson, said the instant success of the AI-powered digital assistant confirms the need for innovation in the industry.

“The hotel industry has been notoriously slow to adopt to new technologies in the past. The team and I have worked in the industry long enough to know now is the time to help hoteliers provide a better customer experience with AI, without losing the human touch,” said Thompson.

Book Me Bob wants to help hotels improve customer experience through cost-effective and high quality chatbot-powered customer support.

After the success in New Zealand, Australia, Indonesia and India, Book Me Bob is eyeing other regions in South East Asia, the Caribbean and Dubai as possible users of the solution for hoteliers.

As the world of hotels moves to embrace technology, this New Zealand start-up is one to watch.