Prediction: What the future of travel looks like in 2040

Here’s a fun and interesting article I came across.  There’s a new report released by Allianz Travel Insurance (they are a fantastic company providing travel insurance and a host of other things).  The article is “Future Travel Experience” which predicts what the travel industry will look like in the year 2040.

It’s written by renowned futurologist Ray Hammond who has 40 years experience writing about trends in the future.  He’s got a long record of accurate foresight and the UN has awarded him the Gold Medal of Services to Futurology in 2010.

Here’s what Ray Hammond predicts:

Virtual & Augmented Reality

Multi-sensory virtual reality will allow you toe “step into” your cruise ship and walk around.  Explore a city that you’ve been thinking about visiting. Walk around a museum half way around the world.  I know it may sound as if VR & AR will be taking the place of travel but that’s not the case. This may help you decide on what you’d like to experience in real life. 


Instant check-in thanks to new technology

Facial pattern recognition systems are already in experimental use at airports, and within 20 years computer systems that can reliably identify your face will be in widespread use to check-in seamlessly.


Hotel software assistants

While some luxury hotels will greet their guests with a human face, many business and budget hotels will use automated check-in and guidance to rooms provided by software assistants. Some hotels will even provide robotic baggage carriers to move luggage.


Super-fast trains

Cross-border train journeys will be smoother and much improved in many parts of the world. Computer networks and the ‘Internet of Things’ (IoT) will manage national and international rail networks, allowing trains to run faster and closer together. Train speed will also increase on most rail networks, with most high-speed trains running at speeds above 125 mph.


On-site 3D clothes printing

In 2040, it will be possible to send your measurements to your hotel in advance of your arrival and heavy or bulky clothes (e.g. raincoats or shoes) will have been printed out to await your arrival, reducing the amount of luggage the tourist of 2040 will have to transport. The low cost of 3D printed garments means travelers will be able to leave the clothes behind for local recycling.


Sustainable cruises

Cruise ships will be far more environmentally friendly than today’s giant ocean liners. Vessels will be powered by Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG), a light fossil fuel with almost no greenhouse gas emissions, transforming cruise vacations into one of the greenest ways to travel the world. The range of cruise destinations will also continue to grow, with Asia proving particularly fertile ground.


Space as a regular destination

For some travelers in 2040, the world may not be enough as it may not offer a sufficiently large choice of destinations. By that time, it’s likely that tourists will be flying to and from the Moon on a regular basis as they seek the experience of seeing the Earth from space.

A lot of these do not sound too far fetched, even space travel…

Let’s check back here in 2040 and we’ll see how Ray’s predictions came out!

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