Asish Koshy

Optimal bundling of shore excursions and on-board products

In its steady evolution as a mainstream vacation alternative, the cruise industry has gone through several perspective shifts. Per CLIA's latest state of the cruise industry report, guests are increasingly expecting cruise lines to provide transformational experiences. By providing a ken of experiences from cultural immersion and "volun-tourism" to extreme adventures, those returning from a cruise are expecting a shift in perspective and a profound sense of accomplishment. In an earnest bid to help guests push the envelope on their vacations and to create unique encounters to take back ho...
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Asish Koshy

Enabling Cruise Lines to be Total Vacation Providers

"Newlywed", "overfed" or "nearly dead" – the cruise industry has for long been fighting such stereotypes about its customer base. But perceptions are clearly changing, and the average cruise passenger is now in the mid-40s; strongly suggesting an influx of millennials and Gen Z into the mix. Cruise providers themselves seem to be supporting this trend in a very active manner, by tailoring onboard offerings and the passenger experience to suit this segment better than it did in the past. Some of the key levers in this regard are duration of the cruise, thematic offerings, price points, distinct...
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Asish Koshy

The case for a next generation enabler for the travel industry

​ " I have the advantage of knowing your habits, my dear Watson," said he . "When your round is a short one you walk, and when it is a long one you use a hansom. As I perceive that your boots, although used, are by no means dirty, I cannot doubt that you are at present busy enough to justify the hansom ." " Excellent! " I cried. " Elementary, " said he. Thus goes the conversation between the legendary Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson in " The Adventure of the Crooked Man ". After having been in the travel industry for close to two decades and having interacted with several leading travel companie...
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Aravind Ramachandran

User ratings: What they really mean for a travel business

"Please give me a 5 star rating" – my Uber driver tells me as my trip ends. "Rate us 5 stars on TripAdvisor " – says the little index card I found on my hotel room table. "Let's cancel the booking. This place has a very low score. May be dangerous" – says my fellow traveller It is clear that service providers recognize the value of a user rating for future business. Those little nuggets of information at the bottom of a listing indeed do have a significant effect on our purchase decisions. V12Data.com quotes research that as much as 97% of customers factor in reviews from fellow customers into...
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Aravind Ramachandran

How safe are travelers in their dream destination?

​ A typical traveler may look for specific experiences while planning a vacation, probably based on how different it is compared to what they are used to in daily life. Clearly, the focus is typically on "what will I get to see/do?" or "how much fun can I have?" as opposed to a more solemn question of "how safe will I be?" What does risk mean? ​ The concept of risk tends to appear in a very narrow context in the travel industry's conversations with customers – a risk of flights being delayed, connections being missed, hotel reservations not being confirmed, a promised ancillary being withdrawn...
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