Latest AR and VR Trends That Are Transforming The Future of Travel & Tourism


Technologies like Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality have been the talk of the town for quite some time now. These are the technologies that have changed the way how everything works, and have brought a transformative effect on the business world. Almost every business is trying to integrate these technologies and use them for their benefits. AR and VR are being used in a myriad of ways, in every industry vertical. Many successful business models are now working with AR and VR to enhance the experience of the end user. Industries like gaming, IT, travel, tourism, and many more have expanded their business with these technologies and have altered the way customers perceive their surroundings.


If we talk especially about the travel and tourism industry, the advent of technology is fostering a change in it. This Industry has seen a lot of technological advances and digital transformations in the past few years. A lot of travel companies are adopting various new emerging technologies to meet the needs of customers. Tourism destinations are always seeking new and innovative ways to better market tourism offerings and increase tourism revenues.

But before reading about these trends and changes in the travel and tourism industry, let us first read in brief about what is AR and VR.


Augmented Reality


Augmented Reality, as the term itself suggests, refers to the enhancement of what we see. It is an interactive experience of the real world, wherein using the computer graphics, the objects that you see are augmented and are made to look bigger and better. One can view the real world in a computer-generated image for an enhanced experience. These images typically take shape as 3D models, videos, and information.

This technology has infinite possibilities. AR has brought quite many innovative changes to the travel and tourism industry. As per the Statista, the global market for Augmented Reality predicted to grow from 5.91 billion to 198 billion U.S. dollars by the year 2025.


Virtual Reality


Unlike Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality is known to create a virtual environment for the users, using advanced computer technology. This technology is known to stimulate all the senses like sight, hearing, touch, and create a virtual 3D environment for an enhanced experience. VR solutions are already being highly used in the gaming, entertainment, and e-learning industry. Now that we know what AR and VR are, let us see their applications and how they have impacted the travel and tourism industry.


Augmented Reality and Its Applications Impacting the Travel and Tourism Industry


In this era where the concept of “try before you buy” is trending, Augmented Reality lets you check the product before you are sure to buy. In the context of travel and tourism, AR apps are offering a better and innovative traveling experience.


App development companies have created a number of applications that are capable of merging the digital visual (audio and other types also) content into the user’s real-world environment and change their perception. Google SkyMap and Wikitude are the two examples of AR apps that let you derive the information about a landmark, constellations by just pointing the camera. AR does not replace the real-world environment, but it increases the value by overlaying digital components.


Augmented reality can be mostly experienced by mobile, tablets, or other smart devices, and hence the solutions are not that expensive. One can carry it with ease and enhance the traveling and touring experience of the travelers.


Applications of Augmented Reality


1) Interactive Hotel Elements


Gone are those days when travelers used to check-in into the hotel without having any prior knowledge about it. There were times when a traveler had some bad experiences during their stay. Nowadays, travelers first make the to-do list to get their time and money invested in the right place. But now, augmented reality introduces more interactive elements into the hotel for an overall impact.

AR solutions make use of  3D animations, printed brochures, and a lot more to make it possible for travelers to find out the information in an interactive way. These hotels hire professional IT services to create unique AR solutions that can be helpful in their business.


2.) Language Translations


Whenever someone travels to any foreign location, one of the major issues they face is the language barrier. However, using smart and innovative AR solutions, they can easily translate any foreign language into their own native language and understand everything written or being spoken there. All this could be easily done by just using your smartphones.


3.) Smart Navigation


When in a foreign land, finding your way to a new place can be difficult. But using AR technology, you can easily navigate your way to your destination. AR is known to integrate the cameras of your smartphones to Google Maps, which are capable of providing an improved user experience and navigation, by adding some convenient digital components like arrows and other important information.


4) Enhanced Convenience


Traveling to a new place can sometimes be difficult. There can be a lot of havoc while traveling to a new place if things are not planned well. However using AR technology, many travel brands are trying to improve the traveling experience. Using these AR integrated apps, travelers can now easily find their destination along with landmarks.

Tourists are primed for entertainment and are always keen to experience something new. AR solutions also let travelers visualize the destinations in the form of a story, which eventually make their traveling experience all the more persuasive and entertaining.


Virtual Reality and Its Applications Impacting the Travel and Tourism Industry


As discussed earlier, VR is the hottest trend these days in the travel and tourism industry. VR solutions are known to create a virtual world and stimulate all the senses for a better and enhanced experience. These solutions allow travelers to take a preview of the desired destination, so that they can gauge anything and everything of their interest. Apart from the travel and tourism industries, there are many top industries using VR solutions for their benefits.

With VR, you don’t need to make a long list and crosscheck the itineraries to plan your vacation. Using this technology, travelers now can quickly do all their research on the destination they are planning to go to.


One of the great examples of VR is the Google Street View app, which allows a traveler to literally go anywhere in the world. This app has a great interface that lets you navigate smoothly and experience a real-world, virtually. You can take 360-degree video tours of attractions, hotels, restaurants, and clubs which will help you plan the destination which suits you the best. One can immerse in the virtual experience of scuba diving, zip-lining, or skydiving and be more curious to experience these in real life. VR headsets and other VR solutions will soon be a powerful sales tool at tourism and hospitality events.


Applications of Virtual Reality


1) Virtual Tours of Hotels


There are a number of hotels that have started offering virtual tours of their hotel room to the travelers. Using VR headsets one can easily check the interior or exterior of their stay area before checking-in to any hotel or restroom. Today’s consumers look for a relaxing stay more than a hectic travel routine. One amazing way to highlight what the property has to offer is offering a digital walkthrough. Also, VR tours can easily be placed with cost-efficient online presentations.


2) Virtual Booking Interface


People always look for easy and agile processes to get their work done. VR solutions have replaced the need to use a traditional computer mouse, or touch screen, in order to make a hotel or flight booking. One can check out local sights and key information, all in the same place. Users can experience seamless booking via a virtual reality headset. For example, airlines have started using VR technology to show travelers the cabins in advance, in order to increase ticket or ancillary services sales.


3) Virtual Travel Experience


Immerse yourself in the experiences you are going to have before booking the destination. A virtual travel experience lets the user dive into the pleasure of adventures and chooses the selective destination for real-time fun. A hotel in Paris may be able to provide a virtual experience of what it is like at the top of the Eiffel Tower, while a hotel near a theme park may be able to provide a virtual roller-coaster experience. With the help of VR, choosing your next destination will be much easier and interesting.


Ending Note


Businesses belonging to the travel and tourism domain are developing day by day. Augmented reality and virtual reality are a big addition to this industry. AR and VR integrated apps not only just improve the user experience but also act as a helpful hand in their journey from the hotel, flight bookings to find major attractions to visit in that region. The best thing is the availability of these technologies in our smartphones or devices. To fulfill the need for travel website solutions hire eCommerce Development Services.


Just not the travelers, businesses associated with travel and tourism have also gained a lot of benefits with these mobile apps using AR/VR technologies. Industries use VR to advertise by providing virtual tours of the destinations or hotels to let people visit more. These technologies have helped reduce costs and enhanced operational efficiency and customer experience. If you are also looking for travel software solutions using these innovative technologies, or want to integrate AR or VR into your existing solution, you can definitely consult or hire services from a renowned app development company, who has both experience and expertise in developing these innovative solutions for your business.