When most people think of the future, they think about strange new modes of transportation. Flying cars, jet packs, and personal submarines have all been painted as the transports of the future but none have quite made it to consumers. Even more realistic individuals, though, must admit that the future of transportation will look far different than today. With 2020 unfurling before our eyes, it’s time to think about how technology will change travel in the next decade.

Autonomous Drivers

The future of transportation is almost certainly in automation. While it’s unlikely that truly driverless cars will really be ready for the road in the very near future, they will get here sooner than some think. There are already driverless Ubers and other autonomous vehicles, though for right now it’s safest to have a human driver in case things go wrong. Until then, drivers should expect to see more automated features like parking and lane-change assist, as well as refinements of some simple hands-free driving modes in consumer vehicles.

Focus on Green Technologies

Almost every transportation company is looking for ways to be more environmentally friendly. As green movements catch on, expect new breakthroughs in everything from battery life to what’s in stock at your local marine maintenance parts supply. Some of the biggest changes will come thanks to those companies that are looking to stay ahead of the green technology curve. Marine vehicles are becoming sleeker, faster, cheaper, and more environmentally friendly. Car parts are also moving towards solar power, and even air travel is becoming a green reality for more and more consumers

Augmented Reality Experiences

The way that drivers look at the road is also very likely to change in the near future. A few car companies are already experimenting with AR windshields and there’s little to suggest that this won’t catch on. Having things like maps, speed, and traffic information displayed directly in front of drivers is a great way to keep their eyes focused on the road and to reduce the accidents caused by inattention. The real struggle will come from finding a way to integrate AR in a way that won’t be a distraction.

Changing Mass Transit

While individual drivers are going to see changes, the really big changes are going to come in the field of mass transit. Cities around the world are already looking for new ways to deal with increasing populations and failing infrastructure, so it’s not much of a stretch to imagine big changes coming to this part of the industry. Whether it’s more feasible versions of the hyperloop or faster trains, expect to see big things in the world of mass transit. Of course, the biggest advancement that makes mass transit feasible is timely and reliable schedules, stops, and accommodations for disabled patrons. Sometimes, it’s the simple things that change travel the most.

Travel is definitely going to change in the next decade, and no necessarily in the ways that many might expect. It will become more sophisticated, greener, and certainly more advanced than what’s available today. What shape it will take is hard to tell, but for now the future of transportation looks very interesting.

Brooke Chaplan is a freelance writer and blogger. She lives and works out of her home in Los Lunas, New Mexico. She recommends looking into marine maintenance parts supply. She loves the outdoors and spends most of her time hiking, biking, and gardening. For more information, contact Brooke via Facebook at facebook.com/brooke.chaplan or Twitter @BrookeChaplan

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