Tourism CFOs say slow payments are main challenge
Most large companies in the travel and tourism industries are unhappy with their approach to managing payments, a PYMNTS study found.
The majority of finance executives in these industries rate their company’s payment operations as only “somewhat” efficient, and one in 10 say their systems are inefficient. According to the “Smart Receivables Playbook”, a PYMNTS and Flywire collaboration.
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Tour operators are reassessing long-standing frictions over accounts receivable (AR) and tackling new challenges in the ever-changing payments space, even as they return from the unprecedented hurdles they faced at the height of the crisis. pandemic.
Read more: Flywire Q4 Total Payment Volume Up 75% Driven by Growth in Education, Healthcare and Travel
Identify pain points
PYMNTS research has identified five key augmented reality issues facing businesses in the travel and tourism industries. Topping the list is an insufficient ability to handle customer payment questions, with 32% of finance leaders citing this as a problem.
These leaders also say it’s too complicated to manage relationships with multiple vendors (a problem cited by 26%), that it takes too long to bring new features to market (24%), that it takes too long to receive payments (24%) and that real-time access to sales and transaction data is difficult (23%).
Responding to questions, managing vendors, and introducing new features are labor intensive and time consuming, highlighting the value of efficient payment systems that streamline related processes.
The process for accepting international payments was ranked sixth among pain points, but it’s the one that finance executives in the travel and tourism industries most often cited as a major challenge – rather than just a problem. among many. While 22% said international payment processes were a problem, 16% said they were their #1 issue.
Rationalization of inefficiencies
Financial executives surveyed said the key to streamlining will be investing in digital innovations that break down cross-border barriers, reduce costs and create future-proof payment transactions.
One PYMNTS executive interviewed cited the use of third-party aggregators as a solution. It is often easier for hotels and other accommodation companies to manage payments and collections when they come from the same source rather than countless individual travellers.
Third-party digital aggregators can also help reduce the credit risk accommodation businesses take on when booking customers and have proven to be particularly useful when it comes to collections.
Another executive cited implementing an integrated payment solution from Flywire as a strategy. The solution allows customers such as tour operators and travel agencies to book and pay entirely online rather than spending time on the phone trying to work out banking and itinerary information.
With solutions like these, finance executives in the travel and tourism industry can pursue a different approach to their longstanding frictions with augmented reality.