In 2020, as the global Covid-19 pandemic spread like wildfire, the economy of almost every country in the world suffered horrific economic challenges. One by one industries began shutting down with no idea of when, or even if, they could reopen.
The tourism industry in particular was hit hardest. Every single branch of the industry without exceptions disintegrated; travel to this day is still heavily discouraged due to safety reasons.
The shutdown of global tourism had more than just an economic impact on the world, however. The social impact on the population was tangible. Not only were people no longer able to travel for pleasure (or work, for that matter), even visiting family became impossible. Physical social interactions were completely eliminated from day-to-day life, replaced by virtual socializing.
And yet, the dawn of 2021 held hope for the world. The tourism industry in particular, having had to stay entirely dormant through 2020, was looking forward to the opportunity to begin opening up. The global dissemination of the Covid-19 vaccine heralded the much-needed rebirth of travel.
The global leaders of the travel industry, however, had not been dormant during the lockdown. Instead, reading the writings on the wall, they began to implement alternatives to traditional travel. 2020 made it obvious that virtual experiences, now cemented into our modern culture thanks to the lockdown, were the way of the future. Moreover, virtual travel opened up the industry to a whole new demographic: those who were not able to travel or did not wish to pay for expensive flights, accomodation, etc. Now that the entire world with all of its many demographics had come to rely on online communication, virtual travel became the next logical step.
Although tourism was hit especially hard by the lockdown, one of the few positives that came out of this global catastrophe was that our eyes have been opened to the incredible opportunities offered by virtual travel. Finally, we as travel experts are able to offer our tours to anyone, anywhere in the world, at any time. The age of safe and sustainable travel is undeniably here!
And yet, those are only a couple of the benefits offered by virtual tours. We’re compiled a list of the three top reasons you should consider virtual experiences in 2021 and beyond.
1. Virtual Tours Are the Safest Way to Visit a Destination in 2021
Today safety is more important than it has ever been. It is still unclear how long, where, and to what extent Covid-19 will continue to have an impact on travel and society in general. Virtual travel, however, is open to anyone in the world with an internet connection, regardless of local lockdown rules. This means that you can have the experience of seeing (and learning!) about your chosen destinations in real-time, but from the safety of your home. Not only does this diminish any travel-associated health risks to you and your loved ones, it’s also much cheaper than hopping on a plane, and allows you to bring loved ones with you on the adventure - even if they’re on the other side of the world.
Moreover, a study from the US National Library of Medicine found that virtual tours help reduce the social consequences of pandemic-related psychological stress. The study proves that, during a lockdown such as the Covid-19 pandemic, virtual tours create a positive psychological impact due to higher levels of enjoyment and stress reduction than an in-person experience This is understandable, given how high-risk physical interactions are during a pandemic.
2. Virtual Tours Are the Best Way to Preview New Destinations
In addition to safety, virtual tours are great for exploring new destinations at a low cost. Given the terrible economic impact the pandemic has had on many, affordability is without doubt key to travel in 2021.
As the world continues to open up slowly, there is no reason why globetrotters need to wait to indulge in their travel ambitions. Virtual tours can help you research where you want to travel once the world opens up, prioritizing your favorites, all in real-time, with an experienced guide. Although Trip Advisor and Google Reviews are modestly helpful in sussing out new, exciting destinations, nothing beats a local expert showing you the highlights and answering questions in real time.
Even if you find that your chosen destination is not everything you’d hoped it would be, you will still have shared a unique experience with friends and/or family, all for the cost of a nice dinner. Win/Win!
3. Virtual Tours Are a Unique and Innovative Form of Travel
Virtual tours have the exclusive quality of having been developed not purely to make money, but to help people survive and thrive during one of the hardest epochs in recent history. They are innovative not in the technology used (which is very straightforward and user-friendly), but because they were created specifically to fill the void left by the lockdown of the travel industry. Nevertheless, all the positive aspects of physical travel have flawlessly carried over into virtual travel: the tour guides remain excellent; the destinations are classically thrilling; the social interactions with both the guides and your “travel-mates” are just as intimate, if not more so.
Vexperio is proud to offer our clients experiences that have been positively reviewed by thousands as we continue to work with only the best-rated tour guides at the most interesting and exciting destinations.
Finally, a virtual tour also opens the floor up to a more informative learning experience than an in-person tour. This is because according to researchers, people pay more attention to a smaller focus area as they are able to absorb more information when the focus area is smaller. Moreover, each virtual tour is catered specifically to your needs and requirements, meaning that no question ever gets lost or goes unanswered.
After the tremendous trauma the world experienced in 2020, virtual travel has emerged as a much-welcome respite from the isolation of lockdowns. Virtual tours allow travellers to experience the beauty of the world, all from the comfort of their home - a trend that will not go away as Covid-19 is relegated to history books. Because virtual travel opens the tourism industry to anyone with a thirst for travel, rather than just those who are able to, it is rapidly becoming one of the most popular virtual experiences the world has to offer.