TORONTO – In an industry first, Travelweek has announced a virtual reality platform that will give travel agents an innovative new way to attract new clients, retain existing clients and increase their business and brand.
Xplr VR by Travelweek, the first of its kind, is a customized travel app that will be available for free download. It allows travel agents and their clients to fully immerse themselves in destinations via virtual reality headsets, a ‘try before you fly’ technology that will revolutionize the travel industry.
Having spent over a year in R&D, Travelweek has partnered with several leading providers of this technology, including YouVisit, Occupied VR, Zeiss and Maxbox VR to bring this exciting new technological development to the world of travel marketing.
“We’re always thinking of ways to add value to travel agents, so we thought long and hard about the future of travel marketing, and created a suite of sales tools agents could use to capture the attention of consumers” says Devin Kinasz, Director of Digital Strategy, Travelweek. “The result of our efforts is the industry-leading Xplr VR, which puts fun virtual reality destination experiences into the hands of agents and their customers.”
The product will officially launch in October 2016 and is simple to use. Anyone with a smartphone can download the app, then slide the phone into a virtual reality headset to be instantly transported to a vacation destination.
Travelweek will be equipping 5,000 travel agencies across Canada with Virtual Reality Starter Kits to be delivered with Travelweek magazine in October. Agents will be able to use their phones with the cardboard headsets to start using virtual reality right away; they also have the option to upgrade to a more professional headset for $159, available for order online when the product launches.
About two dozen destination experiences are already included on the app ranging from destinations, hotels and airlines to cruise lines and attractions. Xplr VR has been capturing content around the world, developing its own production capabilities, and will be continually enriching the experience for travel agents and their customers.
“We are working with the industry’s best videographers, VR experts and project managers to create beautiful and inspiring content,” adds Kinasz. “Virtual reality has enormous potential to showcase destinations in a way never seen before, hopefully in a way that increases the value agents add to a transaction.”
Travelweek has a proven track record of delivering what the travel agent community needs, with a portfolio that includes 40 years of industry reporting, daily newsletters, e-learning and a dedicated agent website. With Xplr VR, Travelweek once again demonstrates its dominance and leadership in Canada’s travel trade media space, cementing its position at the forefront of virtual reality.
More information on Xplr VR by Travelweek will be released shortly.