Here’s What Vacations of the Future Will Look (and Smell and Taste and Feel) Like

Hold onto your sun hats, folks. It's going to be a wild ride!

Vacations are supposed to be about relaxation and rejuvenation, but anyone who has stood in the crowded lines at an amusement park or waded through the hordes of people at Disneyland knows that this is not always the case. In this episode of Futuropolis—the 12th and final episode of season 1—we set out to see how technology might help shape better vacations in the future.

Transportation will inevitably get faster and cheaper, but we also hope it will be without jet lag. Hotels might transform their own furniture to make your room just the way you like it. And don’t worry—the good ol’ postcard isn’t going anywhere (aside from your Grandma’s mailbox).

With our look back at the Popular Science archives, you can join us in the cockpit of the Concorde in 1973, before the supersonic plane would first carry its commercial passengers.


Beyond these basic improvements, we want to know about some of the loftier goals. We talk space tourism with Phil McAlister, who works with commercial spaceflight at NASA. Virtual reality executive producer Christine Cattano explains how technology can entice and enhance our experiences of a place. And futurist Thomas Frey describes machines that could enable you to relax on a beach, from the comfort of your couch.

But vacations aren’t just about relaxation, they’re also about status, says Greg Lindsay, a researcher, futurist and journalist. He says we’ll soon be inventing destinations with deeper and more authentic experiences than we can even imagine today.

Buckle your seatbelts, loyal listeners.

What impossible vacation destination do you dream of visiting in the future? Let us know on Twitter or Facebook, or email us at And be sure to subscribe on iTunes, SoundCloud, or search for Futuropolis on your favorite podcast app.

Futuropolis is a biweekly podcast on the Panoply network. Tune in every other Wednesday for more sneak peeks at the future.