Technology has evolved to greatly serve the hospitality industry and all related businesses are transforming their systems to be digitally based. When we talk about technology in the hospitality space, APIs are key to translation and the core of exchange management to and from every travel or hotel company.
What is an API?
An API (Application Program Interface) is a technology through which different software or programs can interact and exchange data. For the hospitality industry, APIs empower the whole travel experience from booking flights to map-based travel guides. Providing the right data at the right time to the right user is the main objective of API integration into the hospitality ecosystem.
Translation has emerged as a necessity for the hospitality industry. Since all players need to attract a wide range of consumers, they need to speak to travelers from all around the world in a way that’s comprehendible and values the needs of different travelers. Localization and translation is an essential factor when defining the customer experience within the online travel and hospitality sector.
Translation should be present in traveler websites, menus, guest instructions, booking engines, customer reviews and location guides. Anyone offering hotel services needs localization to promote their brand of services.
Another important aspect is localizing hotel management systems (i.e. PMS, housekeeping systems, POS etc.) used across the organization in different countries. It’s a bit of a challenge to build an API that is compatible with different interfaces and ready to communicate with a wide set of CMSs & applications.
Translation APIs should have the following attributes:
The API should meet the security requirements of payment gateway websites and large enterprises. The use of HTTPS requests is a way to ensure privacy.
A very important aspect when designing the API architecture is to take into consideration the volume of translation the API will be capable of, whether it will be used for translating a few words to millions. Also, using best practices in API architecture such as REST ensures scalability.
Ease of use:
Designing a simple interface for export and import, makes the most of the API in terms of consumption and integration. Structured JSON is a standard for API architecture platforms.
Given the fact that many devices have come to play, the API needs to be customizable to work with different formats, platforms and devices.
This provides transparency to API consumers to track the status of all files in translation in real-time. In a fast paced industry such as hospitality, API high availability is a must.
The hospitality sector caters to millions of people every day; the translation APIs should be up to the level where stability and high responsiveness become an important factor to serve an enormous flow of requests any time.
Innovation around services in the travel ecosystem such as hotels and airlines provides valuable opportunities to attract new customers as well as increase existing customers’ loyalty by addressing their needs and letting them interact in more engaging ways where translation comes into play.