Travel Companies Plan Fintech Investment Boom to Capture Travel Rebound

As COVID-19 pandemic restrictions relax around the world and the world begins to rediscover travel, the travel industry has been presented the opportunity to recover by harnessing advances in financial technology (fintech) to enhance the traveller experience.

Amadeus’s ‘Travel Fintech Investment Trends’ report has predicted that 80 percent of companies will outperform or match 2019 fintech investment levels this year.

According to the research, fintech and payments were regarded as a high priority by nine out of ten respondents. Eighty percent of travel businesses stated that in 2022, they plan to either match or go beyond 2019 investment levels. Meanwhile, a third of firms intended to match 2019 levels and a significant 50 percent planned to expand investment. When questioned on company-wide investment, 70 percent of participants shared that they planned on investing throughout 2022 to capture an expected rebound in travel, with only 30 percent opting for a more conservative strategy.

The top motivations driving fintech investment were ‘improving the traveller experience’, closely followed by ‘increasing revenue through payments’. When respondents ranked their fintech investment priorities for 2022 from 15 options, two notable groups of priorities were revealed – ‘existing’ and ‘emerging’.

More travel companies expected to invest in ‘existing’ capabilities during 2022 with Alternative Payment Methods (61 percent); Strong Customer Authentication (46 percent), and Fraud (44 percent) ranked as the three top priorities.

Meanwhile, the second group of ‘emerging’ priorities also scored highly, with Payments in NDC (47 percent); Buy Now Pay Later (36 percent); Multi-Currency Pricing (34 percent) and Chargeback Management (31 percent) making up the top half of the priority list.

In particular, accepting crypto payments was a priority for the fewest number of businesses, although 14 percent plan to invest in the capability during 2022.

David Doctor, Executive Vice President of Payments, Amadeus

David Doctor, Executive Vice President of Payments, Amadeus

“Fintech stands out as an area of the travel business where you can provide new value-added services that bring revenue and improve the traveller experience. That’s why businesses are channelling scarce resources in this direction, and Amadeus is investing heavily too. We expect to double the people in our payments team by the end of next year compared to 2021,” said David Doctor, Executive Vice President of Payments, Amadeus.

“We see our customers rethinking today’s challenges, like managing elevated levels of chargebacks. Whilst also looking to the future, travel brands are embracing innovations like Buy Now Pay Later and Multi-Currency Pricing to deliver a more flexible and transparent digital experience.”