Virtual Tourism & VR Trip from First Airlines in Japan

Virtual Reality, VR, Immersive Technology & Simulated Environment

Virtual Tourism & VR Trip from First Airlines in Japan

First Airlines Virtual Tourism
Credit: First Airlines

Recently, there is a new model of virtual tourism taking place in Japan. The company called First Airlines offer the experience of travelling inside a plane. Instead of the normal flight simulation where you are the pilot or the co-pilot, but here you’ll be the normal passenger on the flight.

How the Virtual Tourism Works?

Located in Ikebukuro, the central of Tokyo, the plane will never never takeoff. At this moment, they are offering up until four locations for the VR trip which are New York, Rome, Hawaii and Paris. How the journey will looks like? Well, it is the same as when you are taking normal flight where you need to go through the basic process such as reservation, boarding, listen to the take-off announcement, in-flight meals, on-board sales and arrival. The whole duration of the session is 110 minutes or nearly two hours.

Inside the plane, there will be video at the wall that will show how the scenery looks like when the flight is taking off during departure and arrival. From the picture, it looks like most part of the plane will consist of the display panel. Looks kinda cool…

The interesting part is during the session, the passenger will be provided with the VR headset for them to experience the VR trip in the country that they selected earlier. It will show the 360-degree virtual reality tours of the location they choose. It seems they are using the Samsung Gear VR for the journey…

First Airlines VR Trip
Credit: First Airlines

At this moment, the number of take up rate is very positive where it is now fully booked since it is opened in 2016. And based on the demographic, it is popular among the elders or old Japanese folks. Beside the old people with the health issue to travel abroad, we think this is also a good market for those having fear of flying or also known as aerophobia or aviophobia. At least, it can reduce their anxiety when one day they need to travel using real flight.

For your info, the ticket price for the First Class is 5980 Japanese Yen which is nearly equivalent to USD 56. Our worry is if the two hours experience is too long until it become boring. Perhaps, the various activities during the journey can overcome the boredom. Perhaps, in the future they can extend the location to moon, ISS (International Space Station) or Mars.

What do you think of it? Are you willing to spend your money and time for this kind of virtual tourism experience? For more info, you can read it at:
1) The First Airlines Official Site.
2) “Flight to nowhere: Japan airline introduces VR trips without ever leaving the ground” from The National.


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