Blockchain technology is expected to impact a lot of sectors and this includes the travel industry. In this sector some of the blockchain implementations include personalization and identification. Through blockchain overheads could be cut making travel cheaper. A decentralized travel ecosystem will also see the middlemen being taken out of the equation. Some have even argued that the disruption could be so huge in the travel sector that it will be a blockchain firm which will be responsible for sounding the death knell of intermediaries such as Uber and Airbnb.
Some advantages of blockchain which make it suitable for the travel sector include the fact that it offers an uptime of 100%. This is made possible by the fact that blockchain databases are decentralized. By being distributed the network reliability is 100%, theoretically at least. This however is only the case when the blockchain is a public one (where the computer network is spread around with no central authority) as even the creators of such a blockchain cannot shut it down. Private blockchains, where the computer network is under the ownership of a particular organization, can on the other hand be shuttered by whichever organization is in control of the nodes.
Immutability of blockchain
Blockchains are also immutable and this ensures that hackers cannot tamper with them since the databases are distributed across multiple computers. And at any one time the computers are always conducting constant checks on each other?s nodes for validity.
Theoretically however the risk of an attack on a public blockchain is at 51%. This would be the case if one particular party seized control of at least 51% of the computers in a particular network and thereby putting themselves in a position of controlling the system. The risk however is extremely small.
Another advantage of the blockchain is that it engenders trust as when a record is written onto a blockchain that information can be trusted across the network. This makes disintermediation possible as well as smart contracts.
One of the firms that is already using blockchain to transform the travel experience is XcelTrip, a booking platform that is feeless. With XcelTrip travelling and living overheads are reduced significantly. This is achieved by creating a decentralized travel ecosystem where there is no middleman as the consumers can interact directly with vendors.
Alternative revenue models
Unlike its competitors XcelTrip does not rely on fees as it revenue model but rather sells advertising space as well as priority search listing to vendors. Additionally XcelTrip has introduced an earning-added model which encourages platform users to list vendors and then receive a commission for their efforts. In both cases the two services will be given via the upcoming digital currency of the company, XCEL.
Besides reduced fees, XcelTrip offers privacy as identifiable user data is not only cryptographically encrypted but is not stored by the company. XcelTrip is hoping the XCEL digital token can become the standard with regards to travel-related transactions.
Another blockchain solution for the travel industry is TravelChain, a platform which allows players in the travel sector to build business models atop the application.
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