The World is #OpeningUp to travel again ! (Part 2)

 

Following these unprecedented times, as phased reopenings are happening across the world, we look to the future with optimism as we all work towards the new normal in our lives.

We are pleased to share with you some positive travel news from around the globe.

COUNTRY UPDATES:

European Union  recommends lifting travel restrictions on 15 countries from July 1. The EU Council has officially recommended to lift travel restrictions on 15 countries when external borders reopen from July 1.  The EU said the list was decided based on the number of new COVID-19 cases over the last 14 days, the overall trend of COVID-19 cases and government handling of the crisis. The list of countries whose nationals will be allowed to enter Europe is as follows: Algeria, Australia, Canada, Georgia, Japan, Montenegro, Morocco, New Zealand, Rwanda, Serbia, South Korea, Thailand, Tunisia, Uruguay, China *subject to confirmation of reciprocity

https://www.euronews.com/2020/06/29/revealed-draft-list-of-countries-that-will-be-allowed-to-enter-eu-when-borders-open

Portugal is ready to welcome everyone in a safe and relaxed atmosphere- Turismo de Portugal has created a “Clean and Safe” stamp of approval to distinguish tourist activities which are compliant with hygiene and cleaning requirements for the prevention and control of COVID-19 and other possible infections.

https://www.visitportugal.com/en/content/clean-and-safe

Iceland will open its borders to all visitors on 1 July 2020. Gatherings of up to 500 people are allowed in Iceland. All restaurants and bars can be open until 11 PM. The “2-meter rule”-distance between individuals, is now interpreted more as a societal norm and courtesy for individuals who are vulnerable. From June 15, the 14-day quarantine will not be mandatory for passengers arriving at Keflavík International Airport.

https://meetinreykjavik.is/

Switzerland There is no quarantine requirement for travellers entering Switzerland who are free of symptoms of illness. Travellers from countries with high rates of new infection may be subject to certain measures such as temperature checks. At public establishments such as restaurants, shops and museums, you must follow the rules set out in the applicable set of precautionary measures. This information will be provided on the premises.

https://www.myswitzerland.com/en-in/

Spain lifted border controls with all European Union member states from 21 June and will no longer impose quarantine on visitors. Hotels and tourist accommodation, restaurants, shops, as well as cultural, entertainment and other recreational and sports centres shall ensure that crowds are avoided in common areas, and shall guarantee that customers and workers maintain a minimum interpersonal distance of 1.5 metres. Appropriate hygiene measures shall be observed in these establishments to prevent risks of contagion.

https://www.spain.info/en/reportajes/informacion-practica-turistas-covid-19-viajar-espana.html

Belgium Apart from the 1.5m social distancing rule, almost nothing separates them from  visitors. Deconfinement is in progress. Everyday life and urban activities are starting up once again.

https://visit.brussels/site/en/article/coronavirus-information-tourism-sector

France Most museums and galleries are now open again, as are hotels restaurantsshops  tourist attractions and public transport. The wearing of facemasks is compulsory on public transport throughout the country and in many other locations, so visitors must come equipped or else be ready to buy facemasks on arrival. There is much less waiting to get into attractions. For most sites, there are limits on the numbers of visitors present at any time, and reservations can be made in advance. Social distancing is obligatory in all public places, with a minimum distance of 1 metre in queues or lines and in all places open to the public. French Railways are offering a lot of cheap train tickets to get people travelling by train again.

https://about-france.com/tourism.htm

Austria  is currently in a phase of gradual, secure, and monitored re-opening. Restaurants and museums have opened on 15 May, accommodation facilities and recreational operations on 29 May.At the moment, travellers from the following countries do not need to show a negative COVID-19 test or commit to quarantine: Belgium, Germany, Denmark (including the Faroe Islands), Estonia, Finland, France, Greece, Iceland, Italy (partial travel warning for Lombardy), Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Switzerland, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Bulgaria, Romania, Croatia, Ireland, Cyprus, Andorra, Monaco, San Marino, Vatican City, Spain.

https://www.austria.info/en/service-and-facts/coronavirus-information

Seychelles From the month of June, private flights carrying passengers who have been given approval will be permitted. Chartered flights carrying passengers from approved countries may be permitted. All passengers must have proof of a negative COVID-19 PCR test that is 48 hours or less prior to boarding the flight to Seychelles.

https://covid19.seychelles.travel/

Dubai  is opening on 7th July.  Currently every Port of Entry into the UAE have their separate rules on quarantine. It is compulsory to have a Comprehensive Travel Insurance that includes Health Cover and Covid-19 treatment coverage for the entire stay. PCR Test with Negative Result had to be taken no more than 96 Hours prior to Arrival in Dubai. The Test Report will be required on arrival at Dubai Airport. In case you are unable to obtain a PCR Test Result, you will be tested at the Airport on Arrival and will need to quarantine until the results are received. The cost of this will be paid by the traveller. Tourists required to register all their details in the COVID-19 DXB app.

https://www.visitdubai.com/en/articles/coronavirus-advisory

Thailand One thousand foreign visitors are expected to be allowed entry to Thailand per day and the standard 14-day Covid-19 quarantine rule will be waived, according to an implementation plan for “travel bubbles”.

https://www.bangkokpost.com/thailand/general/1934696/foreigners-to-be-allowed-in

Sri Lanka Sri Lanka is readying to welcome travelers from across the world with safety guidelines and precautionary measures.  All nationalities are welcome and all types of travellers whether groups, families, individuals. Bandaranaike International Airport [BIA], Colombo Ratmalana Airport [RMA] and Mattala Rajapaksa Hambantota Airport [MRIA] will be operating for tourist arrivals from Aug 1st 2020.

https://srilanka.travel/travel-news?news=729

Mauritius is proud to announce that as of 15th June 2020 it is  COVID- The Tourism Authority of Mauritius has released a new set of guidelines outlining sanitary measures for the resumption of activities in the tourism sector. The work is designed to provide tourism businesses with specific health and safety solutions to ensure the protection of staff and customers. In addition to these guidelines, the authority has partnered with Mauritius Telecom to introduce a ‘Safe Travels’ app which all tourism operators under the tourism authority act are required to download. Mauritius is most likely to open its borders 1st September 2020.

http://www.tourism-mauritius.mu/trade/en-uk/mauritiusreopening

Tanzania, Zanzibar -On Sunday, June 7, officials in the semi-autonomous region of Zanzibar eased measures restricting international travel to the island following a two-month suspension implemented as a precaution to limit the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. Arrivals must have proof of valid international health-insurance, wear face masks at all times, and observe social distancing measures during their stay. Arrivals are subject to temperature checks at their point of entry.

https://www.garda.com/crisis24/news-alerts/348886/tanzania-zanzibar-eases-travel-restrictions-june-7-update-6

Maldives  Starting July, tourists from all countries will be able to visit the Maldives visa-free, with no Covid-19 testing on either end of their flight to the destination, stay for as long as they like and not bother about self-quarantine either. So, in effect, it is back to business-as-usual in the tropical paradise

https://www.cntraveller.in/story/maldives-is-opening-to-tourists-without-any-covid-19-restrictions-travel-visa-rules/

 

STATE UPDATES:

Kerala  The Kerala government issued new guidelines for people travelling to the state for short duration stay.  As per the new guidelines, people will only be allowed to come to the state for limited purposes — business, official, trade, medical, court cases, property management and education.  The fresh guidelines make it clear that no individual coming to the state can stay for more than seven days. Such individuals must leave on the eighth day.

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/travel/destinations/kerala-7-day-mandatory-quarantine-no-longer-required-for-short-visits-know-it-all-here/as76405008.cms

Madhya Pradesh re-opens its State Tourism Development Corporation Hotels, Resorts and many private Hotels at tourist destinations for tourists and Hoteliers, promoting domestic tourism allowing in tourists from within the Country. Madhya Pradesh Forest Department has also issued a circular regarding re-opening of National Parks from 15th June 2020. National Park’s Buffer Zone will remain open during monsoon season.

http://bwhotelier.businessworld.in/article/Madhya-Pradesh-re-opens-its-tourist-destinations/13-06-2020-286815/

 

HOTEL UPDATES:

ITC HOTEL GROUP  has launched the WeAssure programme as its  commitment towards health, hygiene and safety, designed in collaboration with medical professionals and disinfection experts to further enhance the existing hygiene and cleaning protocols.

https://www.itchotels.in/content/dam/projects/hotelswebsite/itc-hotels/WeAssure/WeAssure-itc-hotels.pdf?utm_source=General&utm_medium=Email&utm_campaign=WeAssure_wavetwo

AMAN GROUP  is  preparing to safely reopen their doors  by following the various compliance and government mandates, and keeping the expectations and comfort of the guests and staff at the forefront of everything they do.

AMANJIWO, Java in Indonesia  Has reopened check below link for the press release with the hotel’s latest updates and especially its signature experiences with an emphasis on private dining experiences, spiritual and wellness activities.

AMANWANA, Moyo Island in Indonesia  Amanwana is scheduled to re-open on the 1st August with a new positioning and only 12 luxury Guests tents. A natural paradise less than two hours from Bali by plane and boat is to be discovered at Amanwana, the only resort on the beautiful island of Moyo, a nature reserve in the Flores Sea.

https://www.aman.com/covid-19-update

BELMOND GROUP  Belmond is working hard to ensure that they are ready to welcome back  guests from around the world. They continue to closely follow the latest guidance from government and world health authorities and are undertaking a full review of their operations to ensure that extensive health and safety protocols continue to meet the highest of standards. The teams are preparing for the reopening of properties.

Your timeline for Asia

1 July – Belmond Jimbaran Puri, Bali, Indonesia

1 July – Belmond Governor’s Residence, Yangon, Myanmar

1 July – Belmond La Résidence d’Angkor, Siem Reap, Cambodia

1 July – Belmond Napasai, Koh Samui, Thailand

1 July – Belmond La Résidence Phou Vao, Luang Prabang, Laos

29 September – Eastern & Oriental Express, Southeast Asia

https://belmondcdn.azureedge.net/pdfs/BELMOND_OpeningDates_Latest.pdf

The Leading Hotels of the World (LHW) recently announced  Healthy Stays commitment that will enhance global cleanliness procedures and protocols for  their 430 worldwide members.

For more than nine decades, LHW has been at the forefront of creating the highest standards that have set the bar for worldwide luxury hospitality. With great dedication they are elevating their  cleanliness standards and protocols for clients with their  Healthy Stays commitment.

Healthy Stays commitment includes:

Expert Medical Guidance: LHW collaborated with doctors of RemoteMD, ProHealth Environmental and a FEMA Emergency Response Trainer to develop Best Practice Guidelines specifically for member hotels. These guidelines for COVID-19 disinfection ensure LHW members are taking the steps necessary to create the safest possible environment for their guests and employees.

Gold Standard Cleanliness Accreditation: To certify their global portfolio of hotels meet a higher level of cleanliness and safety, LHW partnered with the Global Biorisk Advisory Council (GBAC), a Division of ISSA, the worldwide cleaning industry association, to offer GBAC STAR™ facility accreditation to their members.

https://www.lhw.com/customer-care?utm_medium=email_manual&utm_campaign=0620_REG_Cleanliness_ENG+-+FINAL&utm_content=&utm_source=LHW%20Contact&ext=EB2MDRB2BLHWWORLDWIDE062020BS1

 

AIRLINE UPDATES:

Turkish Airlines  Has  returned to the skies with upgraded health, hygiene and social distancing measures to ensure that you enjoy a safe and healthy flight. Post meticulous work with national and international health authorities the  flights are ready.They are  happy to offer  flexible travel opportunities  to plan in advance.

https://www.turkishairlines.com/en-int/announcements/coronavirus-outbreak/current-flight-plan/

GoAir  Web check in is mandatory now. Check in on their website  or app to obtain your boarding pass  72 hours to 1 hour prior to flight departure. GoAir’s safety measures are regular deep cleaning of aircrafts, Hepa filters, contactless travel, safety gear for crew and passengers.

https://www.goair.in/

KLM is gradually and carefully restarting its network. In July, KLM operates 5,000 European flights. The forecast for August is 11,000. Intercontinental numbers are around 1,900 in July and 2,100 in August. KLM hopes that – if worldwide travel restrictions are relaxed – an increasing number of intercontinental flights will be allowed to carry passengers again from July onwards.

https://news.klm.com/klm-gradually-rebuilds-network/

EasyJet to resume flights in UK, France and four other European airports. Passengers and crew must wear masks but middle seats will not be blocked

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2020/may/21/easyjet-to-resume-domestic-flights-across-england-and-france

Emirates adds new cities and brings its  network to over 50 cities in July.  Cairo (from 1 July), Tunis (from 1 July), Glasgow (from 15 July) and Malé (from 16 July).Khartoum (from 03 July), Amman (from 05 July), Osaka (from 07 July), Narita (from 08 July), Athens (from 15 July), Larnaca (from 15 July) and Rome (from 15 July). Colombo, Auckland, Beirut, Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City (all from 1 July); and Barcelona, Brussels, Munich and Washington DC (all from 15 July).  These will bring Emirates’ offering flights for passengers from Dubai to 52 cities, including existing flights to London Heathrow, Frankfurt, Paris, Milan, Madrid, Chicago, Toronto, Sydney, Melbourne, Manila, Kabul, Dhaka, Bahrain, Manchester, Zurich, Vienna, Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Dublin, New York JFK, Seoul, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Jakarta, Taipei, Hong Kong, Perth and Brisbane.

https://www.emirates.com/in/english/help/travel-updates/

Picture ©Tourismus Salzburg, Foto: Breitegger Günter

 

For any further information do get in touch with us at askus@thewanderers.co.in

Team Wanderers

 

What Will The Future Of Travel Be Like ? (Short listed Stories)

 

A huge thank you to ALL our contestants , we really appreciate everyone writing in with such amazing super ideas for our Contest!

Here are your stories on what the future holds…….  

 

1. Garav Bachhawat story – Future of Travel

 

Homo sapiens have ever since been surrounded by disruptions. Earlier, the perception of that respective term was limited to products, services and a given industry but who knew that disruption could also extend to the holistic functioning of the human brain. The catastrophic pandemic has brought significant setbacks to various businesses, especially the travel and tourism industry, but has parallelly delivered manifold perspectives of how we can look upon the same thing with astonishingly different frames of reference. Comprehended below are some of my personal opinions about how the future of travel is going to look like in the upcoming decade and beyond. Some of the disruptions mentioned below may come across as impractical and unrealistic, but ironically, even a pandemic was believed to be non-viable before it actually broke out in such a short span of time.

Business Caravans 
All this while, the term caravan has been associated with a vehicle which is well equipped for living and is used for holidays. A major disruption is expected to occur in the way we experience travel and tourism through these vehicles. The futuristic caravans may have even more to offer in terms of a compact conference room for managing the digital elements of the owner’s business. It may also be equipped with a compact professional theatre system, so that the travelers can enjoy their favourite movie, when they do not wish to enter the crowded
cinema halls. Such caravans will not only reduce the number of travelers travelling together but will also keep them in close proximity with each other, therefore ensuring social distancing with the rest of the host country community present around them.

Private Jets & Yachts
Private jets have been around for a while and this form of uber luxury has only been experienced by the ultra-rich. If analysed appropriately, the travel industry has not been disturbed majorly due to the commutation involved in the same, but actually due to the number of people who had to travel together packed into one big flying body. Aircraft manufacturers like Lockheed Martin, Airbus, Boeing, Bombardier etc. may make significant investments into manufacturing cost effective private and business jets which would bring a significant surge in the concept of
private travel. Private travel in private and business jets would eventually keep a check on the number of travelers travelling together at any given point of time and this would consequentially mean smaller groups of people travelling and exploring places together. A similar demand for private yachts can arise as a replacement for sailing in dream liner cruise ships.

Flying Cars
We have lately been hearing of high technology driven automobiles which are capable of self driving. Imagine a car without a steering wheel, which in today’s world serves to be the most essential piece of hardware – be it in a low end or an uber luxury vehicle. The time is not far away when roads will be used exclusively for emergency or health care vehicles whereas all other vehicles might start using aerodynamics to make travelling not just faster but also more technologically controlled. Terraces might transform into parking spaces for the flying fleet while
the underground parking lots might be converted into isolation centers, in case another pandemic breaks out in the world. It may sound unrealistic, but in the coming few months or years, architects and interior designers will start incorporating isolation rooms in all residential and commercial projects just to be prepared for the next such communicable disaster.

Flying Restaurants
We have all heard about the concept of floating food being served in the middle of a swimming pool. This very concept has been very appealing and fraught with the essence of luxury. However, a massive disruption in this space is also expected in the coming few years and it may well be connected with the travel and tourism industry. All these years, travel and tourism has been defined by a group of people moving from place A to place B, spending a few days exploring and enjoying place B and then going back to their home in place A. However, this might
not hold true for the upcoming decade. Imagine people getting on a flight, which has been completely revamped into cubical based fine dining restaurants, where each cubical serves a different cuisine and caters to a different theme setting. The flight takes off, the self sanitising cubical structures ensure social distancing from other guests and the grand dining experience breaks all borders to reach a new peak. The future may also see the application of
this concept inside helicopters and other newly invented flying machines. Other modes of travel and transportation may also enter such segments in order to redefine monotonous and repetitive experiences which have been a part of our usual lives for quite a long time now. This means that travelling in the future may not be for months or weeks, but may also be a quick luxurious get away for a few hours.

Space Travel
A lot of travel and transport has already been happening on earth and also in the skies. The future might be the correct time to explore the space as well, thanks to the efforts of visionary billionaires like Elon Musk, Sir Richard Branson and Jeff Bezos. The time is not far away when the number of days spent in exploring Europe or Japan is replaced with the number of days being spent on exploring the moon and probably eating in a black atmosphere surrounded with white jewels. Apart from Sir Richard Branson and Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk has already invested heavily into commercializing the space industry for travel and exploration purpose. These are just some of my takes out of a plethora of expected disruptions within the travel industry. Submarines might get transformed into city like structures and replace sailing on dreamliner cruises. The very concept of continents, countries and cities might just remain a theoretical reference and people might start travelling through virtual reality without having to leave their home or office. The work breaks which currently mean taking a nap or sipping coffee might get replaced with a 20 minute virtual travel agenda. People talk about consuming different meals in different parts of the world but imagine a future where an enthusiast could bathe in one country, eat in another city, swim in another hotel and party in another continent. Technologies like virtual reality, augmented reality and artificial intelligence will not suffice for this revolution, but such evolutions are bound to happen, soon or later.

 

2. Aarav Tater’s  story – New York or Mars (Class 6 )

 

Bon Voyage! Travel was, is and will be a concept forever. From animal’s back to faster than sound Jet Planes, we have come a long way as travelling has been an essential part of our life. Without it will be like ‘a bird without wings’. We now all know about traveling and we enjoy it.  However, the point is ‘till now’ but what about beyond?

Today we think about travel 10 years into the future. Traveling even after 10 years after 2030 will still be created in many ways. Maybe we will see BloodHoundSSC(s) in every direction? Maybe there would not be pilots for airplanes? Just saying. The big question is ‘What will Travel be like after 10 years?’ Travel will still be a concept even after 10 years, only the modes will change. Will it be New York or Mars?? Will it be New York for board meeting and Mars for adventure holidays ??  With supersonic planes, rockets and space tourism the options of visiting new places will also be more. New places on the list will be Moon, Mars, other space ventures, some resort in certain space stations. Let me tell you that how I think we will travel in 2030.

Speed and Time will certainly be the major criteria for

I think that almost everything would change except the concept of time travel. Speed and time will be the most important aspect of choosing the travel mode. Air travel will be the most common method of travelling. Rockets, supersonic planes, flying cars, Travel pods, you name them and they will be in the air, only the destination will be different. Today a trip to New York from Mumbai takes about 24 hours. I think that after 10 years, it might take only 4 hours as those airplanes might cross the sound barrier. The way isolation and personalization of things are going on travel pods will be in fashion. With advance technology and new systems the faster travelling mode will not have sonic booms.  But do not worry; they will not cause a sonic boom as scientists have found out airplane designs that prevent it. They will be Supersonic Planes with adjustable beds and voice activated TV. So where can we reach in 24 hours.  Will it be Mars, many research are going on currently in space travelling and I think soon it will be a reality. Rockets will not need much separation process codes as that will be done by Robots in the satellite. There will be no lives at stake for reaching the further outer space as those will also be done by Robot Probes controlled by scientists on earth.

Thinking about travelling from train? Be ready for a superfast magnetic trains. Already scientist has announced that Super Maglav trains can go up to 1800 mph. So Kolkata to Dubai will be about 2 hour trip in train. There will be tracks under the ocean for easy access to people to travel.

What about cars? You may ask. Cars will be driven by AI. They will be electric. They will come with another mode in which you can drive yourself but if you do not want to, just sit back and relax by watching the movie you want to watch. Taxis for sure will be driven by robots in most of the places and they may have Mini-Vending Machines in them. The place where the steering wheel will be, it will compress and the steering wheel will be pulled in AI mode to display a LED Screen. The doors will open by your facelocks and fingerprints. There would be cheap car-repairs done by Robots also. 

Water maybe? Boats will become seaplanes whose designs will only allow them to fly only above water. They will carry the weight of 3 tons each and some will carry only passengers. This may allow it to be easier to reach Antarctica and land.

These are my ideas about how we will travel in 2030 because TRAVEL IS ESSENTIAL FOR LIFE.

 

3. Dr Tejaswani Kole’s story – Future of Travel 

 

Never ever did I dream of writing about the future of travel than penning down travelogues!!!

But then life throws many unwanted surprises too.   

NOT ALL THOSE WHO WANDER ARE LOST—-J.R.R.TOLKIEN

Wandering is a passion, hobby, a get away from daily routine.

They say the world is a book and those who do not travel read only a page.

But right now this planet of ours is facing the invisible enemy which has brought all things big and small to a stand still.

Nonetheless we human are very resilient.

We will travel again with a new mindset.

Health for me and you as well –will be the new mantra.

The physical distancing ,masks, sanitisers will be a new normal.

We all will get accustomed to travel without frills.

If the traveller will be bold enough to catch bargains thrown at him he will emerge as the biggest gainer.

Our planet is turning a new leaf in this period.

Better civic sense, better personal hygiene will lead to a cleaner environment which all will aide towards travel.

Although the past few months were dark for  the traveller there is always sunshine ahead for the wanderlust soul to travel, to make memories and to leave behind footprints for others to follow.  

 

   4. Sharanya Sankar’s story – Ramblings of a Gallivanter              

                                                        

Every morning I wake up,make myself a frothy cup of filter coffee and gather my thoughts for the day.This is my time-my few precious moments to think before chaos in the form of chores and children take over.I think of the hours ahead,the meal plan for the day, chalk out a schedule for the kids (which usually ends up with me being the follower of theirs) thoughts on the movies I’ve watched,discussions with family and friends and of course the beautiful places that I’ve travelled to.In fact in all these minutes of tranquility,voyages near and far occupy a special space in my mind.With wonderful memories of trips taken with family and friends flooding my thoughts,I also feel a sense of unrest and inquietude.Would travel as we know it ever be the same again? Has the Covid Pandemic quelled the spark of exploration?What would the face of travel look like in the future? As I sit engrossed ,I remember snippets of conversation that I’ve had over the course of the summer with my kids.

All moms will get this.Our offspring treat us like mecanised robots who churn out magical codes to conquer boredom,hunger,irritation and yes,ennui again. During one of these endless robotic mom cycles both ends were sick of each other.In exasperation my son said “Amma ,wish I could just open the door and go to Madras to see the beach now! My daughter,never one to be outdone ,claimed “Can I also open a door and go to Bangalore?Sahana akka’s apartment is way more fun!” As I sat back lamenting at the unfairness of being termed “less fun ,I found myself thinking “ Now wouldn’t that be nice!”.We’ve all heard of the figurative opening of doors that lead to opportunities and success or literally to welcome people into our homes. But opening a door into another city? I found myself drifting away ( Yes I’m a dreamer and while I chide my son for the same,I now know how genetics work!)

“Amma I’m bored,Can I go to Madras now?” “Of course,but make sure you are back in time for dinner” “Today,let us do something productive. Shall we learn about wildlife? Put on you hats and shoes. We are going to Serengeti…. Far?? Not at all! Can you see that arch at the end of the road? We need to go through that” “But Mom I don’t want to see animals ! You promised me that we are playing in the snow!” “Fine,maybe we can first go to Serengeti and then reach Srinagar by lunch. Sounds good to you?” “Hmmm ok but do you know how to get there?”  “Of course , your mom knows everything! Just walk through those plains and go behind the wilderbeests.” “Ok,while we are at it,could we also stop once again at Maldives? That restaurant at the beach serves yummy food” “We have our hands full already ! Let’s take it as it comes.Besides,it will be hide tide then.The rock  on the beach that we need to step on to get back home may be immersed in water at that time.” 

“So let us get there fast!”…………. And then just like that,I was rudely awakened from my reverie and brough back to reality with the all too familiar trivialities of who spilt the milk first on the couch! But could my hallucinations ever take shape? The world is figuratively getting smaller .With a click of a button,we are able to witness events that are taking place all over the planet.We converse with people thousands of miles away like they are seated next to us.We climb the educational ladder through virtual learning.Men have even landed on the moon and co-habited in space in snazzy rockets But can physical boundaries ever compromise their spaces to allow humans to live within touching distance with each other in the literal sense?

Again my son’s voice dominates the recesses of my mind. “Listen kids,you can’t just open a door and go wherever you desire.There is something called travel time.” “That’s so boring’’ ( yes, that “boring” word again!) “Takes so long to get to these places!”

“One hour by flight isn’t long my dear”!  “It is. Planes are still kind of slow. Wish there were UFO’s or at least teleporting facilities”( Steven Spielberg and JK Rowling,could you please help with that now!) 

What if divine intervention and scientific forethought enabled us to access people and places with just a walk through the door or a press of a button? Would the lack of distance make our hearts grow any less fonder?Would the excitement and thrill of an anticipated journey cease to exist? Food for thought.As I ponder away, my next immediate wish is another Wanderers-curated trip with family which I hope will happen sooner rather than later!

 

5. Viraf Hansotia’s story – Future of Travel   

 

Travelling leaves you speechless and then eventually turns you into a story teller. Well, this is based on how we have travelled until now , but the future of travel may tell its own story. A story like…ange. A story will be like “Once Upon a time…I traveled in an Air plane ”…..

Well…if not soooo bad, it’s definitely going to be a while till we see travel in its “earlier” avatar or in full swing – and I dare say I really think the FUTURE OF TRAVEL lies, visibly in its PAST.
Travel as a Need, Travel as a comfort and Travel as an indulgence are what will really define the future of travelling.
While the “Need” to travel for work I suspect will take a little time and will surge sooner than later, it’s the sector of comforts and indulgences that will need the longer end of the timeline, to come back to life.

So – even if someone FINALLY decides to loosen their purse strings I have no doubt that the spender will need a ‘real good deal’ and something worth it. This is the challenge ahead that will differentiate a good travel advisor from a regular ticketing agent of website. Suggesting Destinations that address several types of requirements – combination if Urban with ease of access to nature – Business and Pleasure friendly places so on and so forth.

One should not rule out the possibility of “Virtual Travel” as an option. 3D games that allow you to travel using technology available today – and imagine a 4 hour virtual tour with an actual dinner based on the theme of there the tour takes a virtual tour….So a Virtual tour in 3D in Switzerland – follow3d by Risottos, cheese and Beer and Fondu…..(So on and so forth for different destinations and its cuisine) – Fortunately. (Now is that not an idea worth selling …) 

At the end of the day, I’ll admit nothing compares to the real touch and feel experience of physically visiting a place. Travel will be back, cautiously, slowly but steadily, and what is needed for its immediate future is the ingenuity on what to offer the human desire to start that journey of a thousand miles once again.

 

6. Shabnam Anis’s story – Foot to Go 

 

It is Monday, 1st January, 2070 in India. The weather is sunny and in the air is some excitement. Men, women and children, all seem to discuss over the same topic. All are waiting for the hour, the hour 1600 for at 1600 some important news is going to be broadcast. A young enthusiastic scientist named Siraat claims to have invented a completely new and very useful mode of transport named ‘Foot to Go’. He is going to give a live interview on television and radio and will be telling the story behind the invention, its name, its features and other necessary details.  

Naemat is hurrying through the streets desperately in order to reach home in time and not miss the news. She is returning from school and is running late, as the school has been dispersed half an hour late than its usual time of 1430 due to the sports event preparation. Just 15 minutes are left for the programme to start.
“Mom has the interview begun?” Naemat asked.
“You have reached just in the nick of time. The interview is going to begin in 15 minutes. Go, change your clothes and come fast.”

Naemat being a travel fanatic is always in search of opportunities to explore new places and is interested in anything and everything that has the potential to increase her opportunities of travelling better and faster.
All are glued to their television sets and radios and Siraat is answering questions such as; how he came up with the idea, who all are involved in its creation, what are the sources of funds etc. After all this, it is that part of the interview when he is explaining about the features and the working of his special travel gadget.
He is explaining that the gadget is basically a pair of thin films which have to be worn by the user under his feet. The films help the user move in the air, in any direction, at variable speeds and up to a very high altitude. This mechanism is based on the effect of air pressure on the movement of an object. In other words air pressure is used to alleviate in air and to initiate and direct motion of the user. Each film has millions of very fine holes which eject powerful jets of air upon being started, which direct motion.

He adds that the films come with some buttons which have to be fixed in the fingers of the user. The Index fingers of both the hands has a button which can be used to go up and down. However,at any given time the buttons of any one hand can be used for the above mentioned uses. Similarly the thumb of both the hands, has a button which can be used to start and stop moving. However at any given point of time the buttons of any one hand can be used for the above mentioned uses. It also comes with a small led screen which can display a map of the surroundings up to 100 kilometers distance around,on being pressed, which can be referred to when and where required. The map is controlled through a satellite. The directions of movement can be changed through the tilt of the body and the speed can be changed through forward and backward inclination of the body. It also comes with a compressible luggage box!

He further tells that this mode can be used not only for travelling, but many more things such as playing games like air soccer, hockey; for research such as on volcanoes, oceans; to avoid overcrowding, as people could travel at various altitudes etc.

He also tells about the advantages of this mode such as, it does not require any fuel as it uses wind energy to function and secondly it is a onetime investment as it requires minimum maintenance.
He has informed that the product will be launched on 15th January. He has paired up with the government of India for its sale and the government has heavily subsidized it as it has the potential to prove very useful. It has reduced its price to half its actual cost which is 5000 rupees per kit. People can order it on its website www.foottogo.com and it will be delivered after 1 month of its launch. Siraat ends his interview giving a tagline to his product, ‘Journey and destination considered equal’.

Naemat is marveled by the product and requests her mother to buy them for the whole family.
Her mother also feels that the product is useful and orders four kits for her family.
The kit will truly make travelling fast, fun and easy for all in the times to come.

7. Veera Khambatta’s  – Future of Travel 

Wanderlust is one of the primal needs of human nature featuring soon after the basic necessities of food, clothing and shelter.

Humans have wandered all over the planet and discovered new lands. In fact the planet is no longer the limit any more as plans are afoot to reach far beyond this planet and adventurous travellers have even signed up for the first flight of Virgin Galactic !!

So Armchair travel is not an option any more except for those with limitations. Travel we must and we will by hook or by crook !

Of Course we may stay put for a few days or months. However soon we will venture out again. Leaving the comfort of our couches, starting perhaps on foot and then soon by bicycle, moving on to cars, trains, planes, ships and even more new and exciting modes of travel like flying drone cars.
Epidemics and Pandemics are not new to humans. They surface every few years and drive us back to our cages. However this forced imprisonment is unnatural, not just for humans but in fact all living beings. Have wings will fly, have fins will swim, have feet will wander and if we don’t have our own independent modes of transport then will even hitch a ride, just like the Corona Virus which is our current nemesis.

It may take a few adjustments in the beginning, like wearing masks and maintaining social distance but adapt or die is the law of nature and humans have so far showed remarkable resilience.
Therefore the future of travel as I see it is even brighter than ever before !

Soon we will dust ourselves off, pack our bags and set forth again with renewed vigour to make up for the lost last few months, expanding our boundaries even further and determined that though my home may be my oyster in times of need, my wanderlust will always take over eventually.

Have wanderlust, will travel !

8. Rashid Hamza’s story – Esoteric Escapade 

 

The year is 2052 and I want to contact my travel agent Wondrous Wanderers (WW; previously known as The Wanderers) to fix my travel plans. I snap my fingers and a virtual screen comes before me. My digital friend, Brainy, has a brain-computer interface and can understand my commands by the movements of the neurons in my brain. Immediately, I am connected to the reception desk of the agent.
‘Hello’, I say.

‘Yes, Sir’, says the lady on the screen. (Actually she is a robot dressed like a pretty girl!)
‘Please update me on my plan for lunar travel’ (Even though it is a robot, I have to use words like please, sorry etc!).
‘Sir, you are booked on the flight to the moon from Greenhorn Space Centre on the 20th of January, 2053; exactly 12 months and 10 days from today. You have to reach Greenhorn two weeks in advance to complete the acclimatization formalities, including getting accustomed to special food, so that you can withstand the grueling space travel gravitational forces and you are able stay in the reduced gravity and rarefied atmosphere on the moon for 6 months.

Before that, you have to attend a local specialized gym for slow assimilation. To this end I have arranged special fast transport from your residence to the gym and back on all days. I have already booked you in these local and Greenhorn programs, the details of which you will find on your communicator device. Switch it on, Sir, and the communicator will install the program on to your brain. You can save and it will appear in front of you whenever required’.

I am pretty excited about this trip as it is my first one. I am a part of the research team some of whose members are already on the job. A large greenhouse has been built on the moon over the years. Initially algae and mushrooms were cultivated and now tomatoes, potatoes are grown.

My first day to reach the special gym, which is 200 kms away in the hills, is interesting. I first have a short and fun-filled 3 kms jet-propulsion flight to the Wide Monorail Train (WMT) station. It is fun riding on WMT. It moves above the road traffic and so is immune to jams. I reach the Hyperloop station on the outskirts of the city and board the fast Hyperloop train which takes just 15 minutes to reach its destination. This train travels at 1200 kms per hour, within a vacuum tube and levitates between magnets. It gets propelled by induction motors. Finally, I get a lift by means of another jet-propulsion kit to reach the gym on a hill. This routine continues over the year.

At the gym, I am familiarized with the harsh conditions encountered during space travel and the long stay on the moon. I am subjected to high gravitational forces in machines and also experience prolonged weightlessness on other equipment. Besides, I work on the normal gym gadgets to increase muscles and reduce fat. I follow a strict diet regime.

Now it is getting closer to my momentous lunar trip. With a snap of my fingers and with the help of Brainy, I get into a video conference with the pretty lady at WW.

‘Hello! Please give an update on my lunar trip’
‘Yes, Sir! You are booked on the supersonic flight from the international airport on 6th January, 2053 departing at 12 noon. A special helicopter will land on the helipad at the top of your building exactly at 11.15 am. All immigration and customs procedures will be completed there only by means of a special device and your helicopter will land directly near the supersonic aeroplane. You will travel at 3 times the speed of sound and will cover 12,000 kms in less than 6 hours. You will reach your destination on the same day at 6 am, thus gaining 6 hours! There you are booked at the Thereton 7 Star hotel.
‘Thank you, lady!’

As the red letter day approaches, my excitement increases manifold. The supersonic flying experience is wonderful. The view from the window is amazing, literally out of this world!

At Greenhorn airport, I am whisked away to the Thereton Hotel in a helicopter. I dictate to Brainy a thank you note to WW for all the precise arrangements they have made for my lunar program.

On the appointed day, we four travelers assemble on site, dressed as astronauts, have our final briefing and are guided to our places in the Dragon capsule which will be our temporary abode for the next two days. Then the countdown begins and we hear noises below us as the various equipment operates and then with a big thud the spacecraft is off and we go speeding 45,000 kms per hour to escape the earth’s gravity and move onto the earth orbit. The spacecraft can achieve this because the engines do not have compressors but depend on shock waves to heat the fuel and ignite it. From gravitational forces of more than 4g, we suddenly find ourselves in zero gravity weightlessness! Then we move onwards to the moon. A Lander takes us down to the moon’s surface. A Lunar Rover Vehicle transports us to our research complex. The overall experience of space travel and the ride in the “lunar buggy” is something which I will never forget in my life. Very sensational to say the least!

I am being taken to our barracks when I experience breathing problems; probably something wrong with my special apparel, I think. I start to choke badly and shout for help…..when suddenly I see my mom waking me up. ‘What is wrong, beta? Why are you screaming?’ Then I realize that I was reading this book “Future Space Travel” and fell asleep. It seems I had choked on the blanket. Whew! Back to life with Covid19 – Stay at Home!

9. D Jagadisham’s story – Speed Capsule Machine

 

This is 2071 a.d., May the 5th. A call from my sister to attend her daughter’s birthday, which falls on 10th of this month, at their residence which is in Corda City of Penta Province of Bonta-Hay Planet in the Roxan-II Solar System, just 250 light years away. It takes just 2 days and 4 hours to reach their home, if I catch the Grey Capsule Cab Service, which is the fastest. I made a call to my travel plan manager, Mr Van Ketan, to make 4 seats available in the Grey Capsule Cab Service, heading to Corda City on 7th, I.e.day after tomorrow, to enable us reach well in advance.

My son, my daughter and my pet cat Alex are coming along with me, ofcourse, my ex husband, is in Ronway planetary system, which is 460 light years away and he is not in touch with us for the past 6 years. Court has given possession of my son and daughter to me along with our family pet cat Alex. My son Revan and my sisters’s daughter Radhe, have a common interest in the field of Quantum Dynamic Travel in Capsule, as both of them are in their online Travel Engineering Final year and the topic for their project is *100 light years travel in 1 hour* and they keep exchange of ideas on the same. My daughter Komal is in fine arts and her performance of Padmavati in the *Kalyana Srinivasam* dance ballet is scheduled at Sonawon fine arts theatre, in Fangsho province of Bendongo planetary system, just 150 light years away, on the 24th of this month. So, finally, we came to the Space capsule launch station, early by 6.30 am by Speedo Car Cab, from our home at Karimnagar, just in 1 hour at a speed of 450 km/hr to the launch station.

We had our breakfast in the restaurant of the launch station and around 7.30am, boarded the Grey Capsule. The journey started, and within few hours, my kids were busy with poker and Alex the cat was busy with spa. I was watching 3d movie. Then we had lunch and we had the spectacular view of T357milky way view from the side windows. Later we took some rest and in the evening, dance floor was the highlight of the Grey Capsule. My children had a nice dancing evening. Then we had our dinner with all the delicacies of fruits and sea foods and also had beautiful view of Sangomona Galaxy from our side windows. Some how we managed another day and reached my sister’s home. The entire day we had lot of fun and partying, though the birthday was the next day. My sister and myself had a wonderful evening with all our memories rolling and rolling, till midnight we were talking to each other, we almost forgot time. Then, we rested. Birthday bash was such a gala event, and all our friends and our relatives from all the solar systems attended. Music, Dance floor, Magic shows, Food stalls, fun at its peak. The party went on till dawn.

Then, we took some rest and got ready for our return journey. We took leave of everyone and boarded the Grey Capsule, and came back to Karimnagar. The times of travel have changed, and now it is just hours travel to cross hundreds of light years. When my son’s project results come out, we may end up in much speeder Capsules of travel. The galaxies, the milky ways, and the far off planets which can be inhabited, are already identified. Human brain can materialize its dreams by inventing speed machines,time machines, to travel in light years speed and reach out to new vistas. After the birthday party and memorable Grey Capsule trip, we fell back into our routine groove and Alex too slipped into restful days watching Tom and Jerry on cartoon network.

 

10. Tarana Fazal’s  story – Reliving The English Summer

 

It has always been a great experience visiting United Kingdom. Since 2016, there has not been a single year that we have missed our travel to the U.K . This is because my husband is a professional cricketer, and we visit there every summer to be part of the English cricket season there. We have a wonderful time visiting different parts of the kingdom, enjoying the popular and exploring the not so popular tourist places! But of course we couldn’t travel this year due to this “corrosive Corona” outbreak!

Just imagine with me, 10 years from now! Neither Covid-19 nor any other pandemic coming in our way to tourism!

FLASHBACK
The year 2020 was passing with trial and error in invention of Covid-19 vaccinations, and the people waiting desperately to resume their regular life.
Travel is considered to be the first priority as far as the regular life is considered for 90% of the individuals. Scientists around the world were predicting the corona thing to last for few more years to come. Business and other work institutions were getting permissions to start with different rules to prevent corona spread. This was because of people’s wants and needs, that can never come to an end. People were badly missing their travels and holidays. But traveling was on a standstill, as crowd witnessed during travels was the main reason for the spread of virus. Also the concept of “social distancing “ was promoted worldwide. All professions and businesses were resuming gradually, causing a real big worry for the Travel industry!
So some scientists started thinking in this aspect as well—
• How to make people travel to distant places with the usual modes of transport?
• Can there be any safer mode which can assure safety during travel from various viruses and diseases?
• What if after corona some other deadly pandemic come into being, leading to further trouble to travel and tourism?….. and “n” number of questions started to arise.
So after years of research and experimentations, some great scientists of India came up with an exclusive invention!

Wouldn’t it be so wonderful to be,
At a choicest place in a minute or two?

You must have traveled in a bus, train or plane,
In spring, snow , hot sun and in rain!

But have you ever given a thought to it,
To travel with just a watch on your wrist?

And yes! They came up with a “travel watch”.

TODAY in 2030
Have you seen or heard about the “chamatkari”(magical) watch in the movie “Mr. India”? It made the person wearing it disappear by clicking a button. And reappear by pressing the button again.
But now, the “travel watch” is one step ahead of Mr. India. It allows one to travel from one place to another in just few minutes.
Now you must be wondering how does it function? It is just similar to a smart watch. You just need to recharge it with the visa details of the country you are visiting, and recharge it just like our mobile network. Isn’t it amazing! So the working of the watch is—
• Fill in your name and visa details
• Recharge with amount according to the distance (lesser for nearer places and more for distant ones)
• Validity of the recharge according to the visa duration
• Scan your face for correct identification

So after filling all these details, you just need to press the button in the watch, and there you go!
This saves your time of travel compared to normal modes of transport. In addition, as soon as you feel the place toured enough, you can visit the unplanned place in the same day as well.
So here I am, in this year 2030, ready with my visa for UK and the “travel watch” on my wrist! Again I’ll have a gala time with my family, travelling from one place to another in just a few minutes. But this is not going to make my stay any shorter, because I love to stay there in English summer, away from the scorching sun of Nagpur. Exploring the unexplored, reliving those lost years, and relishing the places we built some wonderful memorable moments!

This is the time we all were waiting for,
Living life to the fullest & travelling more!

11. Abhidi Chatterjee’s  story – Wacky Travel

February 2025,

Dear Diary,

Today is the day I have been waiting for! It is my 18th birthday.
Happy Birthday to Me!
As a special treat my parents gifted me a holiday on the WanderPod.
Hurrah!

Can you imagine what that means? I get an entire pod all to myself.
Oh Diary! you cannot imagine how excited I am. The ‘WanderPod’ is the only good thing that happened in 2021 after the horrible pandemic left the world shattered. It helps you reach your preferred destination in just a jiffy. No flight or train delays anymore. Isn’t that amazing?

So, we got ready and left for the Pod station. Even that is a timesaver. All you need is to be dressed appropriately depending on the place you wish to visit since the Pod is so fast you will hardly have time to change once you reach your destination.

Echo, my little puppy was with me of course. You know I never go anywhere without him.
The nearest WanderPod station to our house is only a few hours away. So, we took a bullet train from the nearest station and reached our destination on time. Echo was so excited that he broke the leash and ran into the milieu of tourists. I ran after him frantically calling his name only to find him standing with his back towards me, wagging his tail. I looked towards the group of people who were queuing up behind a black line drawn with paint on the floor and there it was!

The WanderPod!
It stood gleaming gloriously as its golden globe reflected the station lights . Its sparkling glass doors stood slightly ajar waiting to welcome its occupant. Two broad golden wings attached to each side made it look like an owl perched on a bronze pedestal. The circular pod stood on a trolley track in the middle of the platform like a showstopper. As each passenger boarded the Pod, the track moved forward pushing the occupied pod ahead. An empty one soon moved in to take in the next passenger.

Finally, it was my turn. I picked up Echo and stepped forward. The instructor explained the rules of travel. I showed her my WanderPod travel card which she used to punch in some code that made the door swing open. I gingerly stepped inside the plush comfortable interiors. As soon as I entered, a spray of sanitizer covered me in a cloud of ether. It smelt good. Echo sat on my lap as I fastened the seat belt. The interiors were squeaky clean and smelt so good.

Soon I heard a crisp voice greet me
“ Hello and Welcome to WanderPod! I am WanderRobo, your travel guide. Please choose your destination.”
A flat screen appeared in front of me. I entered my destination.
“Please enter the currency” the voice instructed.
I entered the currency of the country. In a time when we are opting for touchless transactions, everything I spend while travelling will be deducted from my bank account in the current rate of exchange. Isn’t that convenient?
Then I was advised to put on the headphones and my eye cover that lay in a little pouch in front of me. I put them on and held on tight. Suddenly, the glass cover above me darkened. I had the feeling you get when you drop from a high altitude. I felt light and slightly giddy. Though I hardly felt the pod move, I knew we had reached our destination.
Soon I heard a low ‘clink’ sound, just like glass hitting metal and the door swung open. I stepped out with Echo and immediately the doors swung shut again. Before me lay one of the most beautiful sights I had ever seen. The colours of the Aurora Borealis lay splattered across the night sky. It was absolutely surreal. My parents appeared beside me. They had travelled in a different pod. I had one of the best birthday celebrations ever. We returned the same way we had come, in the WanderPod.

Oh Diary! Even now whenever I shut my eyes, I can still see the beautiful Aurora Borealis and a crisp metallic voice crooning “ Welcome to WanderPod”.

 

12. C. Suresh’s   story – “Don’t forget the oxygen cylinder and…”

 

The vacuum door hissed shut cutting off Sneha’s voice. Ajit opened the locker and pulled out his ERA suit, irritably. If only Sneha had shown proper foresight, this journey wouldn’t be necessary.  He pulled the suit on, even as he bathed in the mist of chemicals. After drying under the UV, with pine scented hot air blowing all over him, he walked to the exit door of the airlock. 

The light above stayed red. What had he forgotten? Or was the airlock malfunctioning? He checked his suit. Perfect. So, what was the…ah, the gloves! Cursing, he went back to the locker. Now, he would have to do the whole rigmarole of disinfecting again. “What’s taking him so long?” Sneha said to herself. “Hope he is safe. Travel these days is so risky.” Pacing between the kitchen and the door of the airlock nervously, she waited, her mind full of possible  disasters that could have happened to Ajit.

The door of the airlock hissed. Ajit entered, wafting in the smell of pine and disinfectant, sweating from the journey in the Extra-Residential Activity suit. Sneha heaved a sigh of relief. 

“Thank God you are safe.”

“I’ll be safer if you planned the online purchases properly. I would not need to make this hazardous journey to the neighborhood stores because you forgot the cumin or the turmeric or…” Ajit grumbled. “Sorry”, said Sneha, even as she grabbed the grocery bag and rushed into the kitchen. 

13. Radhika Bhatia’s   story –Spill The Tea 

 

A group of 5 friends, seated at a café were reminiscing their old days over a cup Oolong tea. The Wandering Hippies, they had entitled themselves, recollected the Ladakh trip that got them together on first place. By the year 2020, they were nonchalant millennials who had climbed the Kheerganga, sighted fireflies at Bhandardara and had taken a dip in the Godavari. Luxury was the least they cared about and they pride themselves in being responsible travellers. There was an abrupt remorse on their face when one of them spoke about the nationwide pandemic in 2020. They remembered being caged in their homes for months not being able to reconnect with the nature. They regretted all the trip they had cancelled and their future travel saving which only came handy in buying medicines and face masks.

After the lockdown ended they had cohesively accepted their fate. They knew travelling would not be affordable or prudent like before, but they could not have never imagined what the future held for them. Kajal recalled how she despised staying in Mumbai and Aman missed not coughing when he was quarantined at his parent’s house in Delhi. Sahil had been saving up for a holiday home in Dehradun. The other two, missed their friends they had made around the country.

Kabir finished his tea and said, “ Guys, I honestly doubted that we would stay friends till 2050”.They collectively chuckled in awe of Kabir’s short and inspiring speech. They looked around to see how the world around them had changed. Soon after the pandemic threat ended, people from different countries around the world had a sudden spark of realisation. The breathable air and wandering wildlife was a gift they never asked for. Kajal realised that she could enjoy her beach life in Mumbai and Sahil realised that he could make his own house holiday worthy. All they had to do was BE MORE REPONSIBLE.

Subsequently after a trillion tweets, hashtags and socially distant protests around the world, the Indian government and superpowers around the world finally gave up. They shut down polluting factories, banned plastics completely and freed the water bodies. Private vehicles were cut down by 70% and public transport was the new normal. By the year 2030, fossil fuels were just history. Cities were greener and people, happier.

Historian and aristocrats would call this move regressive, but India was now one of the most advanced nations. Long-distance buses, once boarded by only a few Wandering kinds, were now the new-hype. Trains were fasters than ever and air travel was only a business perk. Saniya, the tech geek of the group, was surprised by how technology and sustainability had come together. The 5 hippies now travelled whenever they wanted and every weekend was a getaway. Kajal emailed the rest an itinerary of their next wanderlust trip. Afterall, they had to go back to where it all started.

14. Aanya Grover’s   story –The Future of Travel (Age 12) 

 

My name is Aanya Grover, and today, for the first time, I have breathed fresh air. I understand what you may be thinking- “That’s impossible!”- but let me assure you, we have very little idea of what is possible, or even what is imminent, as you will see if you take a trip a few centuries down the timeline. I have come today to tell you, you have been living a lie. You have been focussing too much on your flying cars and inter-dimensional holidays to notice the difference between what has happened and what we wrongly believe has happened. Let me clarify this by citing history.  At first, there were strange animals called dinosaurs and mammoths- they minded their own business eating plants (and each other) and mostly just lived lives of peace. Then along came a mix of two ancient species- the fish and the reptile- to form animals called amphibians. After this came the Dark Age as we have been taught by things left behind by our earliest clan members. We have been taught that this was an age of monotone, of nothingness. We have been taught wrong, or rather, we have interpreted wrong.

What I am about to tell you will shock you. In the Dark Age emerged a new species- the earliest form of man, in other words, our own ancestors. Our clan goes much farther back than the 400 years of history we have been taught. You can wonder, then why was the period called the Dark Age? These men, even though they had very few of our commodities, laid the base for one of our most basic inventions, the GreenMobile- your run-of-the-mill flying car-house with the platinum wheel, herb diesel, and obviously, the multiplex helmets to protect us from the foul air of the outside world. To us this invention may seem elementary, but this was a time where people did not even speak our Language of Love. They did not listen, they only heard; and they did not notice, they only saw. This period was called so because of the ignorance of the people. They did not have flying cars like us, they had big metal boxes called aeroplanes and their cars, which were fuelled by a toxic substance called petrol, ran only on land. Yet they considered themselves to be the greatest of all- exploiting other helpless animals for their meat, hide and produce. The things they travelled with polluted the environment- the air, water and soil- and they did not take notice of the warnings Mother Nature was giving them. Their cars and aeroplanes, ships and jets let out huge amounts of foul air every day. Mother Nature was choking- her land was being tainted and her waters, poisoned. After some time, there began to be huge natural disasters, but still they ignored. They sat up and took notice only when they started dying by the millions- their sensitive lungs pumping until all that was left to pump was smoke and poisonous gas. But by then it was too late. Only around 200 men survived and went on to form our clan. It was these people’s actions that have cost us our freedom, their fault that none of us have ever taken off our helmets or even seen a sunrise.

Their choices in travel caused Mother Nature to suffer so much that she didn’t trust us anymore- that’s why, till about three days ago the air was still black. But that’s all over now. The GreenMobile has saved us all! The herbs in its fuel resupplied the air with oxygen, the force field it helped us cast has repopulated the Earth with green plants and now there is no reason to keep your helmets on anymore. “The Wanderers” have started organising tours in GreenMobiles so that we can all be safe- the people and the planet. So fling open your car doors and roll down the windows to take a breath of that wonderful thing that we need. It is monsoon now- the Earth smells of new mud and jasmine flowers. Tonight we stay up to watch our first sunrise and the beginning of a new era- we shall keep in mind our ancestors and learn from their mistakes. We shall breathe the air they once breathed and walk on the land they once walked on. We shall do what they could not- we shall cease to just exist and start living. Every single member of this clan is important and we can all make a difference. In fact, we already have .You just have to believe in it to be able to see it.

 

 

Thank you  for participating. We enjoyed your futuristic visions  !!