For a while, augmented reality seemed like a new fad. It had some popularity in toys and video games, but few businesses took advantage of its potential. By offering augmented reality in tourism marketing, companies can gain an edge. After all, letting customers explore new venues with tools they already own brings advertising, and exotic locales, to life.
What is Augmented Reality and why is relevant to the Travel Industry
You’ve probably heard of virtual reality, a technology designed to simulate experiences. These units are generally cumbersome to use and severely limit movement. While it’s possible to make portable options, they don’t integrate well with everyday life. That’s where augmented reality comes into play.
Using smartphones or other mobile devices, people can interact with the world in new ways. Utilising installed apps or QR codes, the phone can read certain objects or images in the environment and display new information and static or moving images on the screen. Using augmented reality tourism marketing, businesses can introduce new exploratory concepts to their customers.
Old Media, New Tricks
There are several ways that a tourism business can take advantage of implementing augmented reality into their printed advertising. By allowing clients to visit potential destination while planning a trip, they can get a more concrete idea of what their holiday experience will be like. Some possibilities include:
Interactive Hotel Brochures
A standard brochure may show what the rooms and restaurants of a hotel look like, but it hardly can convey the actual space. With augmented reality tourism marketing, future guests will be able to explore the areas via videos or interactive tours. Planning reservations can be as simple as pressing on a table in the dining area or selecting spa treatments from an interactive menu.
Imagine how much more intriguing Mayan ruins could be when tourists hold up their phones for an interactive adventure. Overlays may appear on screen with images of how temples looked in their heyday, or virtual signs indicate paths and translate ruins. Augmented reality in tourism could also include “guided” audio tours that activate when a visitor reaches certain parts of the area.
This is an example showing the potential of a simple postcard. AR brings it to life with several layers of information about Canary Islands including videos, maps, local information and folklore music.
Many tourists are barred from visiting certain parts of the world thanks to language barriers. Using augmented reality, locations can be tailored to translate signs to help guide visitors in the right direction or help determine where the closest hotels, restaurants and attractions are located. What could be better than trying new cuisine in a local cafe, not knowing the language but having a specialized app do the ordering for you?
Augmented reality travel and tourism marketing can transform every vacation into an adventure. By tapping into the natural attraction to physical media, printed products like maps, signs and brochures come to life with some help from equipment most travellers keep close at hand. The next time you’re looking to add that something extra to your advertising, make an augmented reality in tourism the primary way to give your clients a trip to remember!