Vice President of Marketing
The world is changing and so is airport dining. Today,
great airport dining takes on the characteristics of
today’s demographic shifts. Travelers are a diverse
fabric of different backgrounds and experiences, with
the number of female travelers catching up to and
surpassing male travelers in some markets.
There is no question that today’s travelers, regardless
of gender and background, value their own unique
identities and needs. However, as a whole, they share
a common desire for quality and individualized
experiences. They also represent an economic force
that, with the Internet in the palm of their hands,
shares their experiences with the world. The trend
toward customization, diversity and transparency is
particularly pronounced among the growing millennial
base of consumers who have high expectations from
their airport experience.
This phenomenon requires us continuously to evolve
airport dining and infuse innovation into everything we
do. Innovation is not a new phenomenon, but how we
apply it is. For us at HMSHost, innovation is the lens we
use when approaching anything that affects the guest
experience — marketing and promotions, social media
engagement, restaurant design and menus. It means new
dishes and products that celebrate global and regional
flavors. It means using technology and social media in
new ways to engage with guests. It means facilitating
customization to allow guests to enjoy their food the
way they want it.
Appealing menu varieties that meet lifestyle needs
and customization requirements are the future.
Dynamic programs that allow for idea exchange,
information and transparency are what travelers expect.
Creating an airport restaurant promotion that allows for
travelers to give reviews of their experience and enjoy
culinary innovation is needed.
In the end, it’s about creating a memorable guest
experience that will echo through social media, create
repeat business, and promote positive word of mouth
that can benefit travelers and airport communities alike.
Vice President-Corporate Communications
The retail trend now is what it has always been:
listening to the customers and providing exactly what
they need to make their trips/lives simpler, easier and
That is why, two years ago, Hudson Group redesigned
its flagship brand, Hudson News, introducing the
new and updated Hudson travel essentials store.
Hudson News was a newsstand, and everything was
built around a comprehensive selection of readables
(magazines and books).
Today’s travelers still want lots of choices in things
to read, but they want a lot more, too. They want
electronics (power and sound), so they never run out of
juice and quickly can replace headphones and earbuds,
if they forget them.
They want the indulgent, old favorite candy bars and
salty snacks, but they also want healthy alternatives —
fresh fruit, hummus, cheese sticks, meal replacement
bars, power waters.
The same goes for travel essentials items — ear plugs,
soft socks, neck pillows, blankets — that airlines no
longer provide to travelers.
Now we are finding our wired customers are looking
for fun experiences in the store, so we have begun to
sponsor games and contests on social media — take a
selfie with our cutout and win a prize, etc.
It’s a whole new ballgame in news/convenience.
President and CEO
LS Travel Retail North America
Not surprisingly, we expect that a combination of trends
in the retail and travel worlds will combine to shape the
business that we refer to globally as “travel retail.”
On the one hand, a key retail trend involves a
convergence of the digital and physical, with mobile
retailing, social media, digital wallet and interactive
experiences leveraging various technology solutions
to combine with and enhance the physical experience.
This likely will affect brand loyalty and lifecycle,