January 8, 2017 - Dubois, WY. - It was recently stated somewhere that, "Children born from this time forward will grow up in a world that will have always had the internet available." Profound and accurate.
The first technology boom in the mid to late 1990's saw many visionaries conceive of the ideas and products commonly in use today. However, the technology structure had not been built out. Once the initial technology crash of 2000 came and went, the remaining companies could learn where their place in the world was.
Fast forward to now. With the internet cloud available anywhere there is internet access the idea of purchasing, owning and maintaining local hardware and software is not as necessary. River Pilot notes, "Life As A Service (LaaS) is the desire and opportunity for a person to pay for and use only the items they need, at the time they need them, shared amongst a larger group of like minded people." There is a growing group of people that can really see this as a viable alternative in the digital age.
Millenialls have grown up and shaped this digital realm and are valuing different life experiences than before. For them having a balanced work life, surviving in a gig economy as a Digital Nomad, an "everything social" structure, global consciousness, using only what they need, interactive rather than concrete relationships and lack of permanent ownership has been, and will be, the norm. The injection of travel gives millenials the connectivity and intimacy with others that has been reported as lacking in a purely digital world.
The travel and tourism industry will need to adjust with a segment created, curated and dedicated to this group of traveller. While constant travel is well known to be physically and mentally stressful, quarterly, bi-annual or annual travel is not as "against type" as it used to be. Travel agencies should have a division that offers mentoring and resources to this lithe traveller in order to stay relevant, profitable and assist in a segment that is growing into a new model.
Resources and even conferences are now extant to select components from. For the traveller just starting out, research, support, wisdom and technical assistance can break down the confusion and allow for a quick and easy ramp up to a global existence. Working with a company that "get's it" and can bridge the current travel style to the cutting edge new "alternative normal" will be a necessary partner in the digital travel age.