These days, technology has been reshaping the way we travel be it with the advent of apps, blockchain or through metaverse tourism. Gen Z especially has been looking for such changes to improvise and ease their travel. And through blockchain technology, NFT might solve the issues of security and identity theft for travelers. In layman terms, blockchain is a system of storing information so that it is difficult to hack, change or even cheat the system.
What is NFT?
NFT is the acronym for Non-Fungible Token. It is basically a digital asset that constitutes real-world things such as artworks, music, videos, in-game items etc. These objects are bought and sold online very frequently and this happens through cryptocurrency. These are then encoded with an identical underlying software like various other cryptos.
A distinct and non-interchangeable unit of data is generally stored over a digital ledger by using blockchain technology in order to prove the ownership of a particular NFT (artwork or video).
Hype Around NFT
Kevin McCoy is a digital artist who minted the first NFT called ‘Quantum’ on May 3 in 2014. It then started to gain popularity in the year 2021. The same year, some people made headlines as they were able to earn millions by selling their selfies as an NFT. Such popularity displays the unpredictable adoption curve that the new technologies are creating these days.
The thought of using NFT technology to validate the claim of ownership to something of high value is yet to overtake the travel sector. But according to many industry experts, it will soon happen and it will integrate border crossings, help in planning the itinerary or even in food menus. This is useful as it will help the officials in organizing their customers’ travel and providing them with better hospitality.
It would make international travel smoother for most flyers. As in the future if passports can be backed by blockchain technology, they can help resolve the issue of security and also identity theft as data stored in an NFT is not changeable. In view of the COVID-19 pandemic, NFTs of vaccine-passport as a digital token may be very helpful and more prevalent.
Uses of NFT in the Tourism Industry
Travel NFT hasn’t become quite common in this sector but it is slowly gaining momentum with the popularity of this new technology among the millennials and Gen Z.
Many airports, airlines and various sporting events have started exploring the thought of keeping NFTs as digital keepsakes and top destinations can be included next. For instance, if you travel to a hill station, you might receive an NFT as memorabilia and you can show it off to your followers on social networking sites. It can be helpful to people as it can be stored as memorabilia with sole ownership. Here are some of the uses of NFT in the travel industry.
- Crypto-based NFT travel club: During the pandemic, many travel businesses have started using modern technologies like blockchain to make transactions or make hotel and flight bookings. Many have started rewarding their most loyal customers with NFTs.
- The next-gen airline loyalty: Though not happening today, experts predict that in the future not just businesses but airlines may also give NFT collectibles to its customers. It will not only remain a loyalty reward but soon become a cool gift that frequent flyers will love to flaunt online.
- NFT passport for right authentication: The best use of NFT in the tourism industry is due to their ability to collect and store information that cannot be changed. The digital data of the NFT contains all the information like when it was created, who issued it, when it was transferred etc. This happens with the help of blockchain technology. In future it can be used to issue passports that are more secure. Like we have mentioned above, these days, this technology is also used to create vaccine passports at some places.
As the world is advancing towards a new digital age, we will definitely see a rise in the use of various technologies like travel apps, metaverse tourism, blockchain and even NFT in the tourism industry. For now, let’s wait and stay prepared for how the tech world will shape the travel sector.