Hotels.com carries out “in the hundreds” of experiments per year as it works to set its technology apart from the rest.
Speaking at Travel Technology Europe, the firm’s senior director technology, David Allison, said: “We have had a lot of investment in our platforms so we can experiment and be nimble and learn and move forward very quickly,” he said.
“As we have a lot of traffic we can get a quick reading of what is going well or not.
“We aim to do in the hundreds of experiments per year.”
Thomas Cook’s group IT director, Alan French, admitted he does not think the firm is “quick enough”.
“But everyone would say that because the industry changes so fast,” he said.
“I would say 15-20% of the work that we are doing is us trying to respond very quickly to what the market is doing.”
He said the rest was a longer-term process whereby a case has to be built up as to why a project should be trialled.
“We have quite a lot of older systems,” said French.
“We focus on creating hassle-free holidays, from the airport to the journey back, so we are investing a lot around that.”
Francesco de Marchis, chief technology officer at Low Cost Holidays, added: “Speed is essential – if your technology is not up to scratch it should be trashed.
“For us, evolving is a must to keep up.
“The platform has to reflect the investment we want and what the customers are looking for.”