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We wanted to give Facebook users the opportunity to find useful information about their future cruise without leaving the usual social network and Messenger.
DALLAS, TX, January 30, 2018 /24-7PressRelease/ -- The Texas startup CruiseBe that specializes in the cruise itineraries' aggregation has developed another opportunity for the quick and easy cruise planning - the Facebook cruise chatbot.
Now a tourist who already knows his itinerary or who is just planning the next cruise can have a conversation with a "virtual travel agent" and find out information about specific ships, ports or about the whole cruise just in several seconds.
The first version of the command-based chatbot was tested a few months ago. However, given all the features of dialogues and questions, the team decided to enhance a bot with Artificial Intelligence (AI). And now, Marina Shumaiev, the CruiseBe CTO, presents the first cruise AI-chatbot in Dallas.
The cruise industry is the world's fastest growing sector in leisure travel market. The average grows rate is about 7% per year. Besides, cruises attracts a steadily increasing number of the Millennials and Generation X representatives. Their share in this market is growing at an astonishing rate. And that's not to mention the representatives of the new technological Generation Z that will discover this industry soon.
"Travel companies, from big players like Google or Kayak to fast-growing travel companies like Mezi or SnapTravel, have already created bots that offer tourists help in planning regular trips, booking hotels, searching flights, etc. However, all these bots and applications are almost useless for the cruise vacation. 25 million tourists who go on the cruise every year do not have a convenient tool in Facebook to plan their cruise or simply search for information. We could not stand on the sidelines," says CruiseBe CTO Marina Shumaiev. "We decided to create a cruise chatbot that could become a "virtual travel agent." A kind of friend for a cruise lover who can tell him about the ship and port, play games, offer certain blogs or articles."
After the NLP (Natural Language Processing) implementation and merging with the large database of the cruise aggregator, the first cruise AI-chatbot was ready. At the moment, the chatbot can help the tourist plan his leisure on the cruise, provided that he knows the name of the ship and date of departure.
The bot instantly aggregates the data and generates a link via which the tourist gets a day-by-day schedule showing him what to do in each port and on the ship. Besides, the bot can tell about the most popular cruise ports or ships. Currently, it knows information about 500 ports and 200 ships. Also, it can offer more than 2500 articles and blogs about ships, ports, and the cruise history.
If the tourist simply wants to relax or have fun, the bot can play with him a couple of games (guess the ship, guess the port), quizzes, show funny memes, inspiring photos or just chat with the tourist about life.
"We wanted to get away from the usual cards, commands and give life to our bot, humanize it," says Alex Shumaiev, the CruiseBe CEO. "Besides, we wanted to give Facebook users the opportunity to find useful information about their future cruise without leaving the usual social network and Messenger, to avoid spending hours surfing the Internet and asking the travel agents numerous questions. Moreover, unlike the travel agents, our bot works 24 hours a day and seven days a week."
Of course, chatbots are not yet able to completely replace travel agents during the whole process of searching and booking cruises. Therefore, in the future, CruiseBe plans to deepen the AI element in the bot and implement machine learning, add the possibility not only to aggregate itineraries but also to search and book cruises.
You can get acquainted with the bot via this link: m.me/cruisebecom
Demo video: Youtube
There's also the possibility to get the itinerary on a website or in a mobile application.
IOS app: AppStore
Dallas based tech-travel startup, founded in 2016. CruiseBe provides cruise lovers with an amazingly simple cruise itinerary aggregator for B2C and SaaS B2B solution that proposes day-by-day schedule of a cruise with a complete list of attractions in each port of call and offline route navigation system on the ship.
CruiseBe, Inc. is a member of Cruise Line International Association.
CruiseBe, Inc. took part in Tech Wildcatters acceleration program (the US nationally ranked B2B startup accelerator by Forbes and Inc. Magazine) and Y Combinator Startup School.
We presented CruiseBe products on TechCrunch Disrupt SF 2017. Today CruiseBe is the website, Facebook chatbot, and iOS mobile app.
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