Augmented reality (AR) technology has been around for a while, but it’s really picked up in popularity over the last few years. Chances are you’ve already used AR. If you’ve used filters and stickers on social media, tested a pair of glasses online to see how they look or played with a virtual paint palette for home furnishings, then you’re familiar with how AR works.
The travel industry is taking full advantage of these features and technology to enhance the world and the way travelers experience it. From interactive maps to language translation, the use of AR to improve travel has unlimited potential.
Enhanced Landmarks and Historical Sites
UNESCO World Heritage Sites are bringing history to life with the use of augmented reality. A visit to ancient Olympia in Greece is exciting on its own as you explore the ruins of old temples. But an app downloaded to your phone or tablet lets you see those same ruins as they once stood. AR features like this help make landmarks more than just monuments to see. It makes them a past to experience.
Removing Language Barriers
When all you have to do is point and shoot with your phone’s camera to read another language, it makes getting around a destination so much easier. Apps like iTranslate help you find your way around a neighborhood or order at a restaurant by translating the words on a sign or on the page. For those who want to learn a new language but need a little help to follow it, other apps let you see and read a map with arrows pointing you in the right direction.
Maps and Public Transportation
You’ve probably used augment reality to help you get around and haven’t even realized it. Apps like Google Maps that show you a real-time view as you follow your path use AR to help you navigate a space with useful tips and information. This kind of technology makes it easy to have everything you need for travel all in one place, eliminating the need for paper maps and guidebooks.
Augmented reality has reached intense usage across social media platforms. But did you know you could use it, too, when you share your travels? Check out our Instagram page for instance to see how we’ve used AR to animate our photos and make an image come to life. If you’re a travel blogger who wants to get more engagement on your social posts, try adding movement to your images.
The travel industry is taking advantage of AR as a tool to shape the future of flying. One airline, KLM, partnered with a tech company to beta test an AR tool that lets passengers capture their luggage on their phone to check if it meets size requirements. Travelers will never have to dig around their drawers for a measuring tape again!
Some airports are an absolute maze to get through. That’s why some are testing GPS apps with augmented reality to help you find your way around. Imagine simply pointing your phone to find a path on the screen leading you to your gate without the hassle of looking for signs pointing you in the right direction.
Test out augmented reality on your next trip when you sail with Atlas Ocean Voyages on one of our many luxe-adventure expeditions.