People are traveling more than ever before – and technology has played a major part in this trend. It is now easier and cheaper than ever to cross borders, and you can now even get to the other side of the planet on a single flight. Not only do we travel quicker, technology is also helping us to do it in style.
Rather than flipping through a paper map, people now expect a sense of immediacy in working out an exact route on their smartphone. People also expect to be able to contact anyone in the world at the touch of a button thanks to email and instant messaging. These high demands are down to technology, and once you have these improvements, it is very hard to go back to the old ways again. So, here are just a few of the ways that tech has transformed travel.
In days gone by, you would need to print off all reservations and keep them with you at all times. Nowadays, everything from your hotel reservations to your boarding passes can be stored on our smartphones. The same can be done for tickets to tourist sites etc. What was once highly time-consuming is now straightforward – and also beneficial to the environment as you don’t have to waste so much paper printing off your documents. As well as this, traveling is quite literally becoming less time-consuming. For example, thanks to improvements in air travel, you can now make the arduous journey from the UK to Australia in a single flight.
Saving Luggage Space
Technology is doing its level best to squeeze as much as possible into a single tiny gadget. You don’t need to pack your bags with travel books and maps as all of these can be stored on your phone. Music, movies, podcasts, audiobooks etc can all be kept in a single place on your smartphone or tablet. So, when you are packing your bag to go traveling, your phone tends to be an item that is right at the top of your list.
Surpassing Language Barriers
One of the biggest challenges when traveling to a foreign land is the language barrier thrown up between you and the native citizens. Nowadays, there are plenty of apps and tech-based solutions to the problem. A couple of examples of the most popular ones include Google Translate or iTranslate. You can even hold your smartphone over a menu for a direct translation of it, and there are even systems being trialled that allow for direct translation through earbuds. In addition to this, there are plenty of free apps like Duolingo which save you the huge amount of cash that standard language classes would cost you.
In the past, booking a holiday would have been a painstaking task as you had to call each individual hotel and transportation provider to make your booking. Nowadays, you can do this from wherever you are. Download apps such as the Booking.com or Hostelworld ones and you can register your account and have your accommodation booked in just a few clicks. You can also compare options to get the best idea of where you will be staying before you get there. Gone are the days that you would get a nasty surprise when you would arrive at a hotel to get the nasty surprise of it looking totally different to the pictures in the brochure! Also, many hotels and transportation companies are now offering an instant chat service that allows you to get in touch with them with minimal hassle.
As well as your standard credit and debit card options, it is becoming more and more common to see systems like Apple Pay, Samsung Pay or Google Wallet in place. As well as making it easier to pay wherever you go, it is also much less risky as you are not in danger of losing vast amounts of cash. As smartphones now have the fingerprint locking system, you don’t have to worry about getting hacked or losing your PIN.
Better Individual Travel
If you want to zip around on your own, you could invest in a bike. And technology has even made the humble bicycle better with features like pedal assist, advanced locking systems and improved navigation. Perhaps you are simply looking for something that can bring you some fun away from the main streets such as an off road hoverboard. Ultimately, technology is seeping into a wide range of different areas.
A More Personalised Experience
The final point that we are going to make is about how technology is allowing us to have more personalised and unique travel experiences. For example, websites like Airbnb are putting the focus very much on the ability to have authentic experiences when you are traveling by staying with locals and seeing something different from the usual. And thanks to the rise and development of social media, more and more people are seeing through the eyes of others and being inspired to travel themselves. And as this desire increases, technology and business are there to provide the answers with chatbots, niche websites, blogs, apps and services.
There is no doubt that travel has been changed enormously in the last few years thanks to technology. First of all, everything is so much more efficient than it once was as you can store everything on your smartphone from your hotel reservations to your plane tickets. You can travel lighter than ever before with so much less of a need to bring heavy books with you. Language barriers are gradually starting to be pulled down. You can instantly book hotels, journeys and experiences at the touch of a few buttons. Also, you can pay for more and more things using your smartphone. Finally, many more people are being encouraged to travel thanks to what they see filling up their social media accounts.