The year 2020 will leave us marked for life. A year in which the world was paralyzed by an unprecedented pandemic that has shaken our entire society and our habits of life.
That same march, at the beginning of the pandemic, IST created a contingency plan to ensure the survival of the organization and guarantee the technological service that we currently offer to more than 46,500 travel agencies, tour operators and more than 30 cruise lines that depend on our technology. Once the plan was designed, we offered a system of shortages, discounts and payment plans adjusted to the possibilities of our clients
During the hardest times of the pandemic, it was clear to us that agencies had to focus on resizing and adapting to the situation in order to move forward and that IST was not going to be a problem for them at that critical time. It is they, with their optimism and without knowing it, who have given us the strength to continue unabated despite the difficulties of facing an unprecedented situation in one of the sectors most affected by this crisis.
But we leave behind 2020 and we see a 2021 full of optimism with our eyes set on the end of the first quarter where the gradual resumption of the operations of the main shipping companies is foreseen and with 3 clear purposes on the horizon :
Purpose number 1 : RETURN TO SHIPPING
In order to achieve an efficient reactivation of tourism, the key is to generate confidence, guarantee the safety, health and well-being of tourists. In this sense, CLIA has worked in a pioneering way in the industry with one of the most demanding measures by requesting a negative test before boarding. The cruise ship industry has demonstrated leadership and firm commitment to public health and has pioneered the implementation of safety protocols unprecedented in the tourism sector: 100% testing of passengers and crew, and an indispensable requirement that the test result be negative before boarding.
In addition, another battery of measures has been implemented to safeguard people’s health; the mandatory use of masks by all passengers and crew on board, physical distancing in terminals, during excursions or air management, and improved ventilation strategies to mitigate the risk of contagion, among others.
Purpose number 2 : KEEP INNOVATING
To be digital or not, that is no longer the question
The world has changed, and so have consumer habits. The future without technology no longer exists. We will continue to innovate and offer the best technological solutions so that the sector can go digital and continue to grow as it has done up to now.
The paradigm shift has led to an acceleration of the digital transformation. The expected growth in online sales has accelerated to the point that it is no longer the future, but the present. Society has been transformed and providing users with online sales channels is now essential to adapt to the new world.
We are working on a very big project with some important entities of the sector, which will change the way of understanding how technology can support the cruise sector.
Purpose number 3 : HELPING TRAVEL AGENCIES
Putting their sales on autopilot
Travel agencies are and always have been the main sales channel for cruises and our mission is to work together to make your business as profitable as possible.
Our technological solutions focused on both B2B and B2C business provide travel agents with more than 95% of the world’s cruise offer in a quick and easy way that helps considerably to improve productivity in cruise sales. From open solutions that allow you to connect directly with the shipping company and create your own search and booking engine for cruises, to comprehensive solutions with quick and easy implementation.
At IST we have been offering technological solutions for 20 years, providing the industry with the best technology to digitize their businesses, be more efficient, have greater cost control and allow agencies to offer a user-centered digital experience.
We believe that in a context of maximum uncertainty, providing security and confidence to the user is one of the most difficult tasks, and that is why we think that travel agents should help the consumer in product advice, while our technology helps them to put sales on automatic pilot.