Virgin Holidays dips a toe in virtual reality and brings Google Cardboard in store

Virgin Holidays is set to introduce Google Cardboard technology in its retail stores alongside an online Disney MyMagic+ tool to let customers test out holidays before making a purchase.

From 26 December, 50 Virgin Holidays stores will feature Google’s technology, which uses a mobile device inside a Virgin Holidays branded mask that works as a simple virtual reality headset, playing footage of the Riviera Maya in Mexico.

The project will extend into 2015, when footage of Miami and Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando will also be available to view.

Virgin Holidays has also integrated MyMagic+ into its online platform meaning consumers can pre-plan their trip, including rides and experiences, to Walt Disney World.

Lee Haslett, director of sales trading at Virgin Holidays said: “We are thrilled that we will be able to inspire our customers to choose their next holiday by going beyond brochure pages and giving them an immersive experience like no one else on the high street, making holiday planning easier than ever.”

Meanwhile a ‘Try on a Holiday’ booth will tour the country to give customers the chance to experience Cancun, Barbados and Walt Disney World Orlando before they book.

Touring UK cities including London, Manchester and Birmingham during January, the booth will allow would-be holiday makers to get dressed up in summer clothes and take a selfie to share across social media.

The initiative comes as other holiday companies, such as Thomas Cook, introduce virtual experiences in-store to drive engagement and sales.

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