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Using Tech to Narrow Down Your Travel Destinations

November 13, 2020 Tech No Comments

For many of us, travelling is split into two great passions; actually being there, and the planning of the trip. When we plan, we let our mind wander. We imagine the possibilities based on the accounts of others, filtered through our own experiences. While this can open us up to new opportunities, it can also give us unrealistic expectations on what destinations represent.

Fortunately, modern tech has afforded us ways to pre-explore some aspects of our possible destinations like never before. By taking a look at some of these options, our goal is to help our readers create a plan they’re comfortable with.

Street-View and Panoramas

Some of Google’s many offerings, whilst consistently underrated, are very useful in the virtual exploration of travel locations. Specifically, we’re talking about Google Street View and their system of inbuilt, community-generated panoramas. Both of these serve slightly different functions, but both can give an appreciable way to get a feel for a location beyond static or text-only reviews.

“Google Maps Street View – NYC” (CC BY 2.0) by FaceMePLS

Street-view allows you to click through a location, which can give a better understanding of distance and scale. One of the advantages here is that there’s no hiding the reality of an area from these cameras, meaning a much more accurate look at what you’ll really experience.

On the other hand, the panoramas that are built into Google’s map services are much better at giving an impression of events or times of high activity. These tend to be taken at a place’s best, such as during a festival, so travellers looking for a certain experience have a way to get a full-360 look at what to expect.

If possible, we would also encourage utilising VR tech to get a more direct feel of the surroundings from these services. While they probably won’t be completely analogous to your height, they can at least allow a more intimate snapshot of what a destination offers.

“Alcatel Idol 4 with VR box” (CC BY 2.0) by pestoverde

Stepping Outside of Reviews

Reviews and visitor accounts from sites like TripAdvisor are another way to gain insight about a location’s offerings. These can be incredibly useful for gathering information, but it is important to remember that they can also be coloured by personal bias. As such, they can work well in relaying the feel of a place, but they can also be limited in their objectivity.

For this reason, we’d recommend additionally studying online reports of places which focus not just on the feel, but also the more objective aspects. For an example of this, consider this article on casino architecture written for an online casino site. On this page, various examples of classic casino architecture are detailed, from America’s Bellagio to Macau’s Orpheus hotel, and even New Zealand’s Sky City. By giving the facts, sites like these let players know exactly what they’re in for, so they can form their own opinions.

“Sky Tower” (CC BY 2.0) by Gerald Chan Photography

Combined, these avenues can help let travellers get a far better feel of a potential travel location than through traditional means alone. They might take a little research and effort to generate the best effects, but for planning a trip much more confidently, they can be well worth the effort. Just be sure to leave a little mystery for yourself, to keep the wonder of personal exploration intact.

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