TUI makes bus fleet in Majorca smart

New GPS infotainment system provides holidaymakers with information about the route, the nearest hotel and possible excursions

The worlds's leading travel company TUI has organized a smart infotainment system on the group's own fleet of buses on the island of Majorca. During the transfer from the airport to the hotel, the tourists will be able to follow on screens the routes boing followed, the next hotel stop and further items of information. “As a result, the guests now know that they are sitting on the right bus and when they need to get off at their own hotel“, explains Chris Carmichael, Innovation Lab Manager at TUI Destination Experiences which has its headquarters in Palma de Mallorca. “Without such a system, misunderstandings with the driver can well lead to passengers getting off the bus at the wrong hotel. The experience gained in several months of testing has been very good. After the monitors have already been installed in the entire TUI bus fleet on the Balearic island, further destinations are scheduled to follow in the near future“.

In addition to route information the digital displays also provide infotainment elements. “Welcome and security videos as well as security videos and announcements are also shown“, Carmichael goes on to explain. “In various languages, depending upon the language in the guests' home country“. If a bus on Majorca while on the way to the hotel, for example, drives past the wine-growing region of Alcudia, we show videos with impressions and information about the tours which we offer there“, reports the Innovation Lab Manager.

The majority of guests are likely to already be familiar, from the public transport at home, with screens which indicate the next stop. In contrast to underground trains and trams or buses used in public transport at home, the challenges for TUI are considerably more complex. "Our buses almost never travel the same route twice in one a day", emphasizes Carmichael. Among other things, the system is based on the use of satellite-based GPS technology. According to Carmichael, TUI is thus a pioneer in the tourism industry. Step-by-step as many of TUI's destinations as possible should receive the smart travel assistance. Under the umbrella of TUI Destination Experiences, the TUI Group is bundling together all activities such as transfer, guest care and excursions in the holiday countries. All-in-all, the division makes use of around 1,000 bueses and minibuses – together representing one of the world's largest fleets of buses.