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Traveling the World… Virtually

26 October 2021

Gear up for the virtual tours of your life

Most people have probably tried at least one virtual reality experience in their lives by now, and that comes as no surprise because the technology and its gear have now made their way into becoming a commonplace household item. From the cell phone virtual reality headset to the more complex equipment of Oculus and PlayStation VR, this magical mask is fully capable of transporting users on a journey across a wildly immersive and oftentimes highly imaginative 360-degree experience. The technology is known to be the biggest in the gaming industry, where developers have created ways to fully immerse players within a game and break the fourth wall present between a person and a screen – but does the use of it stop there? Of course not! Apart from entertainment, VR could also create immersive experiences for education purposes: from surgery preps and training to flight simulation for beginner pilots – and perhaps the best kind of use comes with a blend of those two purposes, whereby users learn about a new place while immersing themselves in its virtual environment. We are of course talking about Virtual Reality Travel, and that’s exactly what you should be looking into before going anywhere these days – here are some main reasons why: 

-        Cost effectivity

While investing in a virtual reality headset does vary according to model and technology, it is still a must have piece of equipment of our time. A ton of VR experiences and games await you once you do your one-time purchase of the gear. Cut down on plane tickets, accommodation and other travel expenses by traveling the world from your own home. Being in two places at once has never been more affordable! Which brings us to our next point…

-        Saving on time

The word “reality” in “virtual reality” is based on how our brains perceive this whole new place or environment as “real” – well, virtually real. Having the ability to visit a new place and then get back to wherever you were and whatever you were doing just minutes before you embarked on your journey sure counts for something when we’re talking about time efficiency. No cues, no stops and certainly no long flights will stand in your way of getting straight to the good stuff and learning more about the greatest landmarks and places of the world!

-        A great introduction to new places

Say you booked a virtual reality tour of Barcelona with us (which we’ll get to shortly), wouldn’t that be a great way to get an initial feel of what the place is like, and whether or not the city speaks to you (let’s be real though, Barcelona WILL speak to you). VR travel trends sometimes stretch as far as hotel tours, giving users ways of visiting the accommodations of a city as well. Think of it as a “try before you buy” type of thing. With virtual reality tourism, everyone can now get a fair taste of different places in the world and learn more about them before even looking into flight availability.

-        Travel anytime, travel many times

You know how everyone looks back at their old trip photos and reminisces over past memories of those places? VR travels are snappy ways for people to travel anytime they want, wherever they are and then to revisit those experiences upon desire. It’s a one-time purchase product that could be revisited at any time. 

-        Easing down tourism’s carbon footprint

Think of the overcrowded spaces that you can now easily avoid with VR travels – skipping straight to the good stuff in your guided tours. The technology is clearly a friendly solution to the problem of over tourism, and is certainly helping the planet with that.

-        Seniors and physically impaired individuals travel easy

Think of all the people who can’t actually travel because they’re senile or possess a physical impairment that makes all the typical steps of traveling such a great inconvenience. VR travels now offer these individuals a chance to visit new places and learn more about them. An initiative by a company called Viarama for instance is dedicated to helping seniors with Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, who are on end-of-life care, by providing a one of a kind experience through VR travels around the world. 

-        COVID-19 regulations and the pandemic

With almost the entire world being affected and even struggling with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and its reoccurring variants, many rigorous restrictions such as entry bans, quarantines and vaccine checks play a much imposed role on travel, especially for tourism and leisure purposes. So why not enjoy VR travels while staying safe? With more countries stepping up their VR production and marketing in an effort to recover from the recent climate’s effects, escapism straight from your sofa and to different corners of the world is now an easy option out there! 

Speaking of “countries of the world”, let’s talk about Spain – more specifically, Barcelona! A magnificent city that seems to enchant every tourist and newcomer. Close to 32 million people choose the city of Barcelona to be their holiday destination each year, and a lot of those visitors miss out on a lot of the city’s deepest and darkest secrets when they book a tour-less trip. The Barcelonian now offers you the authentic experience of touring select areas of the city with two options that fit all lifestyles and desires: On Demand Viewing or Live Tour Booking.

On Demand permits you a 7-day pass to enjoy VR travel tours of pre-recorded audio clips and videos by our local guide in tours like The Secrets of Barcelona, in which you’ll find the answers to questions such as “who was the vampire of Raval?” and “why did the genius mind behind the Sagrada Familia, Antoni Gaudí, die like a beggar?”. Live Tour Booking is a better choice with customizable options alongside a live tour guide. After requesting a day on the calendar to book this live session, your guide of the city accompanies you on your Barcelona tour and answers any of your questions with this fully live interactive option. You are now able to immerse yourself in two thousand years of history and discover Barcelona’s secret hidden spots from the comfort of your own home, anywhere you are in the world. The choice of tour is yours to make – don’t hesitate and book your tours right here, right now!

Our friends over at GlobeTrotterVR, the creators of our VR content, are always working harder to ensure they up their VR travels game and that you travel better!

While VR travel does a lot of good, helping out many people through these hard times, it is certainly not a means of substitution for actual travel, and surely does not intend on doing more than to entertain and educate through its user-friendly means. Even if you are not a tech-savvy person, working with the technology is very simple and user-friendly, and it is certainly a great tool for fast and easy immersion in different places and cultures. Its impact on travel will be determined by the evolution and application of new technologies, so only time will tell just where virtual reality is really heading in the worlds of travel and tourism…

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