Technology, whether we like it or not has changed the way our world works. Things are now a lot more convenient and easier. My parents still can’t get over the fact that with a click of a button, you can have a car pick you up or food delivered right to your doorstep. When it comes to traveling, technology has improved so many aspects of it by ten fold. Imagine traveling with no access to google maps, flight booking systems, hotel booking platforms, or even something as basic as not being able to read information on blogs and websites.
Although I would have loved to experienced traveling during the good old days, for the most part, they make traveling just so much more convenient and affordable. Listed below are a few ways on how technology changed the way we travel.
- Technology Made Travel More Affordable
- Technology Made Travel Eco-Friendly (If you’re conscious about it!)
- Technology Made Travel Planning a Breeze
- Technology Changed the Way We Find Things to Do
- Technology Made it Easier to Capture Moments
- Technology Made it Easier to Stay Connected While Traveling
- Technology Changed Our Packing Style
- Technology Made Travel More Time Efficient
- Technology Made it Possible to Keep Family in the Loop
Technology Made Travel More Affordable
Nowadays, we have access to virtually everything within our fingertips. We can now browse and compare flights (without having to drop by a travel agency). I love checking out websites showing error fares as usually, I end up finding really cheap deals.
Websites or apps like Skyscanner also make it ridiculously easy to compare flights and find the cheapest deal possible. Apart from that, with apps like Uber, Blah Blah car, you have easy access to alternative transport options, ridding you free of annoying taxi cabs who charge exorbitant rates.
P.S. The Skyscanner app is a staple in every phone that I’ve ever had. I use it to secretly check flights to “everywhere” whenever I’m bored (you never know!). If you don’t have it yet, downloading it is a MUST.
Technology Made Travel Eco-Friendly (If you’re conscious about it!)
If you choose to, with the help of technology, travel can become a lot more eco-friendly. Gone are the days where you had to print your airline ticket, boarding pass, train reservation, hotel reservation, and the million other things that need to be printed. Instead, we now have online check-ins, e-tickets, and online reservation coupons. Not only does it save you the hassle of carrying multiple pieces of documents, it’s also better for the environment. Win-win!
Technology Made Travel Planning a Breeze
From booking a flight, train, or hotel, travel planning has become easy as pie (well, sort of!) Now, you have access to blogs (just like this awesome one) giving out useful tips and travel advice.
Aside from having a wealth of information in your fingertips, it also makes things so much more convenient. If you are leaving to go on a trip, you can log on to websites like Parkos.com which instantly shows you affordable and safe cheap airport parking near main international gates in the US like JFK, Miami International, Newark and more.
No longer do you have to drive around searching for a reliable parking spot while worrying about missing your flight. Thanks to technology, you can browse reviews from other customers making the entire parking experience pretty much hassle-free. Tech like holafly also allows you to get eSims before you even arrive to a destination, making sure that you have internet straight when you land.
Not only that but even booking hostels and hotels have now become super easy. Nowadays, when I want to book any sort of accommodation, I usually just log in to either booking.com or Airbnb and within minutes, I can have something booked within minutes.
If you’re a bit fussy about these things, check out our Where to Stay articles- we usually have loads of personal recommendations to save you sorting through heaps and heaps of reviews.
Technology Changed the Way We Find Things to Do
Back in the day, as there was no such thing as Trip Advisor where we could read reviews on a company’s’ track record. It was all done on blind faith. Now, we can instantly read reviews on what to do, and moreover, we can instantly find unique and fun things to do which match your travel style.
Technology Made it Easier to Capture Moments
My dad once drove a campervan across Europe and did not have a single photo of his entire trip. Nowadays, thanks to technology, we can easily capture memories and relive each moment. My memory is pretty bad but every time I look at a photo, I am amazed at how it can bring me back to specific moments. Whether it was of times where I paraglided over an exploding volcano or when I trekked to see the sunrise in Mt. Bromo, Indonesia, I can instantly go back in time and reminisce.
Ironically, as a travel writer, it’s my job to document my travels, however, the longer we’ve been on the road, we’ve also learned how to simply enjoy the moment. So while all the big bloggers are all on Snapchat, Instagram stories, periscope, we choose to tell a story with just our words and photographs in order to give us more time to appreciate what’s in front of us.
Technology Made it Easier to Stay Connected While Traveling
Back in the day, when you meet someone, you exchange email addresses and pray to God that you won’t loose that scrap piece of paper than you wrote it on. Nowadays, to stay in touch, you bust out your Facebook and instantly connect with others. I remember during my first Europe trip, I randomly put up a status saying something along the lines of, heading to Europe, anyone got a couch for me to stay in?
Within hours I had heaps of messages from old/new friends offering their couch or spare bedroom. Through websites like Couchsurfing or Meetup, you can also connect with other travelers and locals in a place.
Technology Changed Our Packing Style
Nowadays, technology is all about cramming the most functions into one tiny gadget. It’s evolved so much through the years and now, if we wanted to listen to music, we no longer had to pack CD’s and Discman, instead, we all just have a Spotify or iTunes account which we use to stream music on the go.
While I love reading physical books, because of my nomadic lifestyle, I opt to buy digital books instead, saving me a ton of space in my backpack. Nowadays, I travel smarter, lighter, as I’ve been able to find versatile items that I can use.
Technology Made Travel More Time Efficient
For most people, time is the most valuable thing. It is the only thing that we can never get back. When I first started backpacking, I had nothing to do so time was something that I had a lot of. However, I realized that now that we work on the road, I am a lot more time conscious. Instead of lining up to get bus tickets, I check if I can buy them online. Instead of walking over to tour operators to ask them questions, I opt to send them an email. There are so many little nuisances that technology has solved which we often overlook.
Technology Made it Possible to Keep Family in the Loop
When I first left to travel, my dad had me swear (and double pinky promise) to call him every time I changed countries. Little did he know, my itinerary often involved hopping from one country to the next. Without apps that offer free online calls like Viber, Skype or Whatsapp, it would be virtually impossible to keep in touch. Parents would have to rely on letters, snail mail, or phone booth collect calls (p.s. do phone booths still exist?!) Although my dad still worries about me, he can keep track of where I am and can sleep a little better at night after I’ve sent him the standard “Hi dad, I’m still alive” text.
While I could literally go on and on about how else technology has changed the way we travel, I think you get the picture. While a lot of people tend to make the bold claim that technology is ruining the way we travel, my retort to that is it’s completely up to you on how you use technology. Ironically, my better half Tom (who is spearheading the development of our app) didn’t even have a phone when he first left to travel.
Yes, I agree sometimes we can become too dependent on technology that we forget the best part about traveling. Meeting people, asking locals, and exploring the unknown. Just remember that not everything has to be captured on social media and not every experience can be found in a guidebook.