Virtual Tourism: travel lifelines during the pandemic

April 5, 2021 4:10 pm

Has the COVID-19 pandemic changed the way we travel forever? 

With the COVID-19 pandemic hitting the tourism industry hard, many businesses and travellers have been looking for tourism lifelines to help scratch the travel bug in what’s been an incredibly challenging year.  

We’ve seen a boom in people travelling closer to home, but one industry could very well prove to be the lifeline we’ve been looking for to help us all explore the world from the comfort of our own homes: virtual tourism.   

Whether it’s virtual reality, live streams, or even taking a visit to your local museum, there are plenty of ways to explore without travelling. 

Let’s take a look at some of the most interesting virtual travel trends taking off right now. 

VR Marketing 

While international travel isn’t a viable option at the moment, it’s important to remember that it will be in the future, and you shouldn’t be abandoning your marketing efforts just yet. 

Where virtual reality (VR) was once looked at as a fading trend, the technology has made a considerable comeback in recent years, with massive investment from companies like Facebook making headsets relatively affordable to the average consumer, and tourism companies should take note. 

Yes, if you’ve ever wanted a glimpse of the “real” thing before jetting off to your next holiday destination, VR might just be the answer you’ve been looking for. From a marketing perspective, VR offers incredible value and seemingly endless possibilities. 

Getting a potential traveller to make the shift from curios to hitting that book-now button is all about building confidence. For the average person, an international holiday is a big deal. That’s why travellers want to be confident that they’re making the right choice before making a commitment. VR offers a cost-effective, accessible, and exciting way to help clients feel at ease, confident, and more willing to hop on a plane. 

If Earth isn’t quite doing it for you, why not explore Mars?

Webcam live streams

Whether you’re dreaming of catching a few waves in Oahu, or exploring the Upper Yosemite Falls, there are a number of fantastic live streams from all around the world sitting right at your fingertips. 

Live streams might not be quite as exciting as putting on a VR headset and exploring, but they are a fantastic way to scope out some potential holiday destinations while we’re all stuck at home. 

For businesses, live streams offer tremendous value. Not only are they fairly simple to set up, they’re a great way to gauge just how interested people are in your destinations. If a dedicated web cam stream sounds like too much work, why not consider going live on Facebook or Instagram? It’s super easy and all you need is an internet connection and a smartphone.  

Oahu pipeline live stream: 

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Take travellers behind the scenes

With tourism and travel rates at an all-time low due to COVID-19, why not take advantage of the down time by offering potential travellers a glimpse behind the scenes of your operation? 

Been dreaming of hanging out with the hippos at the San Diego Zoo? You’re in luck! 

Keep an eye on the future  

While our ability to travel might be limited at the moment due to COVID-19, webcams, live streams, VR, and so many more digital options continue to offer unique ways to keep travellers optimistically looking toward the future. 

Not only do these digital travel alternatives build excitement, offer escapism, and help us explore the world, they help to keep your business and your destinations at the forefront of travellers’ minds. 

Digital travel offers the tourism industry the opportunity to connect with customers in a time where connecting seems like such a strange concept. When the world is ready to start travelling again, you want travellers to visit you, and virtual travel is a great way to make that happen.