Virtual reality has finally broken through and it’s the newest form of tech for travellers. From booking a hostel on a 360° app to exploring the Great Wall of China in your bedroom, the world is only a few years away from a technological revolution.
VR won’t be going mainstream next year, but the long-term implications for travel industry are enormous. Facebook bought Oculus Rift for $2 billion in March 2014 as they know future users will want more than just photos.
Oculus Rift will extend your peripheral vision and make the internet a real 3D world. VR will be like nothing you’ve ever seen before. When you wake up wearing immersive software in a few years time, then you’ll know the world has changed forever. HostelsClub thinks VR is going to be a game changer, especially when it comes to the travel industry. Here’s a few reasons why.
Want to go white water rafting in the Grand Canyon or watch Lionel Messi score at the Nou Camp? VR goggles can give you these experiences in real time. Whether your head turns left or right, it will feel as though you’re in a 360 degree world. Never leaving the house and spending all day immersed in a virtual world might not sound like fun, but in a few years time…
Try before you buy
Understandably, the travel industry is keen to ensure that VR does not replace ‘real travel’. Instead, they want to entice people into booking by sampling their experiences online first. For example, hostels will soon have to showcase their dorms, living rooms and showers with virtually guided tours and impress customers with immersive transparency.
VR represents a huge challenge for accommodation providers, but enormous opportunities too. New technology will raise standards and give the consumer more power than every before. Confidence is king when you’re booking a budget holiday.
Travel bloggers have entertained us with their written stories, photos and video messages for about 20 years. In future, you’ll be able to travel alongside them. Put on your Oculus headset and follow bloggers in 3D reality, from trekking in the Andes, surfing in Miami to taking a gondola ride in Venice.
VR will open the floodgates for travel bloggers, who will soon move beyond photos, videos and blogs, into a immersive, live experience that only requires your brain for company. It’s an incredible shift in technology, and pretty soon you will be able to experience a moment, place and live events from anywhere in the world. Virtual reality is like nothing you’ve ever seen before
Whether you’re a backpacker without a smartphone or a virtual reality obsessive, when it comes to travelling, there’s still one golden rule that will never change. It’s the experience that counts.
*Header image by Sergey Galyonkin (Flickr/Creative Commons)