I was excited and intrigued to be invited by the Travel Tech Lab and London & Partners to speak at the Future of Travel event last night which was a part of London Tech Week.
This was a tech-led event looking at transport from the outside, rather than a typical transport event. So this was a great chance for a different, broader perspective and indeed that was what I got!
Split into 2 parts, I was representing the travel and transport industry on behalf of Alstom alongside colleagues from Masabi and Marriott.
The key points we all agreed on were the shift to a digital, connected world focusing a lot more on every individual customer and their experience. My focus was on the customer-centric provision of mobility opportunities through the application of Mobility as a Service, along with payment in arrears on actual use of transport rather than the payment in advance for a season ticket or a car, bringing the end of the traditional ticketing and fares structures replaced by data-driven new opportunities to provide better travel, more options, greater choice and ultimately a focus on every customer and their needs rather than just selling seats on trains, buses or cars.
The second part was fascinating, with 4 start ups presenting their ideas and work:
Airportr (http://portr.com) who deliver bags to and from the airport for you – enabling, for example, the use of public transport rather than car or taxi to get to and from the airport without the stress of lugging those bags around. Potentially a very exciting possibility for transport colleagues to consider in the future.
What3words (http://what3words.com) have mapped the world into a grid of 3m x 3m squares with each square being given a 3 word code. Essentially you now have an accurate addressing system – indeed Mongolia have adopted it to provide addresses for the country. So the front door of Alstom’s High Holborn office is at blast.loads.incomes while my home address is work.arrive.hopes – very cool!
Timelooper (http://www.timelooper.com/#home) provides virtual reality on your smart phone, bringing history to life in front of you and showing the history of experience at a particular location. Fascinating and inspiring.
Flyto (http://www.flyto.io), recent winners of the Travel Tech Lab/Mastercard hackathon, offer the simple and effective premise – stop paying for your flights upfront; start paying in easy, fixed monthly instalments.
All 4 were extremely interesting ideas and I could see an exciting range of uses and applications that could positively benefit and enhance travel and transport in a number of ways.
A great event, fascinating, well done to the Travel Tech Lab
Thanks to @PhotoSpotLand for this photo of me in full flow!