The future of travel arrived this morning in the form of an artificially intelligent mobile travel assistant created by the Flight Centre Travel Group (FCTG) called ‘Sam’.

‘Sam’ was unveiled at the btTB GBTA Conference in Sydney where experts said (we assume based on the product’s description) the new-age technology can practically (and kind of literally) hold a traveller’s hand throughout their entire journey.

Designed with corporates in mind, FCTG’s James Kavanagh described ‘Sam’ as an “intuitive, helpful and practical” product, which can take the stress out of travel by providing all the information they could need right at their fingertips.

When Kavanagh says ‘all the information’, he REALLY MEANS ‘all the information’.

Much like current travel apps, Sam – a part AI and part real-life consultant – can be downloaded later in 2018 onto the mobile phone and accessed in a couple of easy steps.

Once active, Sam will ask the user if they’d like to add their travel plans to the app, to which they can respond with either ‘yes’ or ‘no’.

Flight Centre Sam 3

Assuming they agreed, Sam will then send them weather updates to the traveller the night before departure and ask if they need transportation to the airport a few hours prior to departure.

If the user needs a lift to the gateway, Sam will arrange it for him/her via either Uber, Lyft or Certify rides and keep the user informed of any gate changes.

Flight Centre Weather Update

Upon touch down, the traveller will be advised on which carousel to pick up his/her luggage and Sam will organise any further transportation as needed.

Another bonus of the app is the real-time traffic updates, which Sam uses to notify corporate travellers ahead of any upcoming business meetings scheduled in the app.

Flight Centre Uber Update

Sam also has an interactive city guide to help the traveller get around and offers a direct line to a consultant via phone and a chat feature.

OH, and Sam has the capability of uploading expense receipts!

“By downloading Sam, our customers won’t miss a thing.”

James Kavanagh, Flight Centre Travel Group Corporate Division Executive General Manager

Sam is already assisting corporates in the UK and USA and is available now for clients of FCTG brands FCM Travel Solutions and academic travel provider Campus Travel. Sam will step to assist more Aussie business travellers during the second half of 2018.


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What are your thoughts on Sam?