The future of the Internet will provide us with the opportunity to travel in a whole new way, both through fully immersive virtual travel experiences and by integrating our real-world travel experiences with cutting-edge technologies.
With the metaverse and decentralized internet technology, travel companies will be able to offer customers more personalized and engaging experiences. As these technologies continue to advance, they are expected to have a significant and transformative effect on the travel industry.
We explore three key ways the future internet will impact and improve the way we travel and see the world.
Virtual reality (VR) allows us to explore new places without leaving our homes, offices or classrooms. While this will never replace the magic of real-world travel, there is still tremendous value in being able to explore the world without hopping on a plane or train or going on a long journey.
For example, Patagonia has created an Oculus Rift experience that allows users to visit the remote mountain Mount Fitzroy, including viewing a breathtaking glacial lake that sits at the foot of the mountain. You may never be able to visit Mount Fitzroy in real life, but this immersive experience offers you the next best thing.
Travelers can also use virtual reality to “try before you buy” and see if they want to visit destinations before committing to buying tickets, hotels and excursions. Hotels are already using VR as a marketing tool to get visitors to their doors.
As the metaverse evolves and incorporates more digital replicas of real-life destinations, we’ll be able to travel to a wide range of locations just by putting on our headphones. As the future of the internet will be connected and persistent, we will also be able to travel seamlessly from place to place, even carrying our virtual baggage with us!
Improving real-world travel
Future internet technologies will also continue to enhance and enhance our real-world travel experiences. Destinations like the Disney parks are already working to incorporate virtual world simulators into their venues, using projected images.
We already have VR theme parks, such as VR Star Theme Park in China or VR Park Dubai, offering a variety of games, rides and experiences, and we can expect to see even more of these destinations in the future.
Traditional theme parks will also incorporate VR and AR into their regular rides and experiences. For example, at SeaWorld in Orlando, Florida, riders are given VR headsets to enhance the roller coaster experience. In addition to the usual roller coaster twists, the VR headset transports riders to a digital underwater world.
People will also get help from AR to make travel easier, more enjoyable, and more fun. Imagine reaching a real-world destination and being able to see interactive information like driving directions, landmarks, and points of interest on your glasses or smart phone.
The AR feature of Google Maps Live View overlays easy-to-follow AR arrows and directions over the real-world road ahead, guiding you on where to walk and where to turn to get to your destination.
Tunnel Vision NYC is another AR app that turns New York City subway maps into interactive visualizations. Chinese ride-sharing app DiDi has an augmented reality feature that guides passengers through buildings such as train stations and airports to find exact departure point locations.
Travel and Web Technologies3
Web3 technologies like blockchain will also make their way into the travel industry. Blockchain-based booking platforms are already available, and companies like TUI Group are working to integrate blockchain and smart contracts into their travel businesses. Companies are potentially looking to use blockchain-based booking to eliminate intermediary sites like Orbitz and Expedia.
In the future of the internet, we can also expect to see more travel-related non-fungible tokens (NFTs). Luxury hotel brand Marriott Bonvoy partnered with artists TXREK, JVY and Erick Nicolay to create one-of-a-kind NFTs, which were awarded to three winners, along with 200,000 Marriott Bonvoy points each.
As web3 technologies continue to transform the travel industry, not only could we book all of our travel on the blockchain, but our passports could also be NFT on the decentralized web.
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