This post was posted by The Hipmunk on Hipmunk’s Tailwind blog on December 2, 2015.
Travel is an industry based on and advanced by technology, and today we’re witnessing more innovations than ever. From Virtual Reality, like Oculus Rift to accessing Netflix directly from your hotel room, travelers are increasingly turning towards technology to take the agony out of travel. Hipmunk asked 1,000 travelers* about the future of travel tech and which new innovations they’d appreciate the most. Spoiler alert, Tinder-for-travel made the cut.
Tech Trends Today:
Travelers today prefer efficiency over small talk. Checking in with an app and delegating packing to a robot top the list of current tech trends.
- Check-in apps: Not surprisingly, 56 percent say they’ll skip the line and check into hotels using their smartphones.
- Robot servants: Nobody likes chores. 14 percent say they’ll call on “Alfred,” a robotic butler to help them with their check list. Hopefully “Alfred” knows how to pack light.
Tech Trends Tomorrow:
Instead of airplane mode, how about “travel mode”? This phone setting forces travelers to interact with the world around them while traveling.
- Cashing Out
- Local Trap App: 58 percent An app that scans the QR code of an item and then uses geo-location data to show you the average price of the item where you are. Never pay tourist prices again!
- Currency Detector: 20 percent say they’d use a device that identifies the foreign currency you have left at the end of trip by snapping a photo, so you can spend or exchange it before you leave the country.
- Apps for Interaction
- Travel Mode: 26 percent like the idea of a new “travel mode” for smartphones, which would shut down all compulsively-used apps and force travelers to interact with the world around them.
- Tinder-for-Travelers: 22 percent say they’d try an app like Tinder, but for travel, that connects them to like-minded (or just good-looking) people around them.
- Traveling Light
- Powdered H2O: 24 percent say they’d carry powdered water through security. Then at the gate, they’d expose the powder to oxygen, creating drinkable water for a lot less than the $5 bottles sold at the airport.
- Condensable Shoes: 23 percent say they’d tote shoes that easily fold up into the size of a deck of cards.
Which travel tech trends are you dreaming about?
*Hipmunk surveyed nearly 1,000 travelers to ask them about their favorite tech trends. The survey was fielded from July 7 through August 25, 2015.