50 years ago it was 1968, the year synonymous with Martin Luther King Jr. and when protests against the situation in Vietnam were widespread across America. This was also the year Boeing rolled out their famous 747 jumbo jets, completely changing how we fly across the globe.

Looking back, it’s hard to believe how much has changed around the world since the 1960s. With the invention of the internet and cell phones, travel has become much faster and convenient. As a species, we are consistently coming up with new ways to decrease some of the stresses associated with not only our everyday lives but also with traveling. Today, we now have access to powerful technology, social media, and new travel products that make navigating new countries much easier.

Reading about the past 50 years in regards to travel not only gives you an idea of how far we’ve come, but it also lets your mind fill with wonder about the future. If we can achieve this much in 50 years, how much will we have achieved by the year 2068?

Let’s take a look at 20 ways travel has changed in the last 50 years.

20 20. You Can Now Blog About Your Adventures

Back in the day, you could write a book about your many travel adventures, but it wasn't easy. Now with the internet right at our fingertips at all times, we're able to share our many stories with whoever we want.

Thanks to websites such as this one, we're able to write about topics such as travel tips, best destinations, and food recommendations all from a laptop or even smartphone. Our ancestors would be rolling in their grave if they realized their great, great granddaughters could take a photo of the Pacific Ocean and send it to thousands of people across the globe!

19 19. E-Tickets Make Flying Easier

It's hard to believe that just ten to fifteen years ago, every single person at the airport would need to check in at a desk to get their ticket printed before boarding a flight. Now thanks to technology, we can download our airline's mobile app and walk up to a small kiosk to get our boarding pass!

Not only that, but many trains around the world operate through a similar system. Instead of paying upfront with cash on a train bound for New York from Connecticut, you're able to buy your tickets in advance via your phone. This takes a lot of stress out of traveling!

18 5. Hitchhiking Isn't As Prominent

When I hit the road nowadays, I rarely see hitchhikers out and about anymore. Back before ride-sharing companies became popular, hitchhiking was a lot more well known, especially in certain states.

People who were traveling to get from point A to point B would hang out on the side of the road and stick their thumb out, which signals to passing cars that they're looking for a ride. Of course, we have heard of twisted stories associated with hitchhiking, but for the most part, it was just a great way for teens and younger adults to travel the world and meet new people.

17 4. Neither Are Postcards

When was the last time you remember receiving a postcard from a relative in the mail? Postcards used to be a great way to let loved ones know what you're up to, but nowadays, it's much easier to let them know via social media or through text messages.

Of course, there was something charming about receiving a postcard in the mail. It was always a nice surprise and something to collect and show off to your friends and families.

Thankfully you can still find postcards in many gift shops and airports, making it a great and cheap souvenir to remember all of the places you've been!

16 3. It's Easier Than Ever to Work or Volunteer Abroad

Did you know that you have the option right at this very moment to volunteer in different parts of the world for a small fee?

With programs such as WWOOF (World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms), you can offer your time and services to thousands of farms across the globe. It's a wonderful way to meet new people, lend a helping hand, and learn the skills associated with farming.

If getting dirt under your nails isn't your thing, luckily nowadays it's also easy to take your work abroad with you. Whether you are a freelancer or working remotely for a big company, it's now easier than ever to contribute to a business from wherever you are.

15 18. Smart Phones (More Specifically, Mobile Apps)

You'll notice that a lot of the entries on this list have a common theme: technology. Thanks to individuals such as Steve Jobs and Bill Gates, we're able to greatly cut down the time it takes to plan a trip. We can now use our small mobile decides to book hotels, grab an Uber, and make reservations at our favorite restaurants.

Not only that, but smartphones make it a breeze to communicate with anyone in the world. If you need to reach a relative while you're on vacation in Aruba, you can do it. Want to send your significant other a photo of the meal you just purchased at the ramen shop in Tokyo? No problem!

14 17. Google Maps

I personally still remember the days where my father would have me print out directions from websites such as Mapquest.com to use during our various trips. Even before that, my older relatives needed to rely on physical maps to get from point A to point B. And before that? Compasses.

It's crazy to think that we have the whole world in our hands; literally. By using Google Maps, we're able to quickly search for routes to wherever our heart desires, all while a robotic voice tells us step-by-step how to get to our destination. Long gone are the days of having to hold a giant map out in front of us, telling the driver that their next turn should be coming up in half a mile.

13 16. The Rise of Airbnb

Even though hotels are still an excellent option and aren't going anywhere anytime soon, Airbnb has officially taken the world by storm in the past few years.

If you've ever wanted to live in a treehouse during your stay in Tennessee, you can do it. How about a home with a beautiful kitchen and outdoor pool? You got it. Thanks to Airbnb, you can now enjoy a home away from home. Even if the nearby hotels are booked out or you aren't digging their numerous fees, you can easily jump onto the Airbnb website (or app!) to book a vacation rental that will have you jumping for joy.

12 15. Ride-Sharing

Ever since 2011 when Uber launched across major U.S, cities, we've been able to use our mobile devices to grab a ride. Ride-sharing apps such as Uber and Lyft have given us an alternative to trying to hail a taxi on busy NYC streets or sitting crammed on a Boston subway.

Using an app like Uber or Lyft can also be a cheap alternative to renting a car, especially if you're with a group of friends and plan on splitting the cost of each ride. Both apps also allow you to review your driver, see where they are in relation to your pick-up spot, and even see what type of music they play inside their vehicle.

11 14. Being Able to Research Anything Your Heart Desires

Although guidebooks and maps are still available to buy from bookstores, they are becoming a thing of the past. Nowadays we can use the internet to Google anything. 

Before the rise of the internet and smart devices, you would need to ask relatives for travel tips or purchase a few guidebooks to gather all of the information you need. Does anybody else remember the giant Yellow Pages phone books? Those are definitely a thing of the past and we don't miss having them take up space on our coffee tables!

10 13. Groupon

Groupon is a great website to use if you're looking for nearby deals, especially in regards to restaurants and activities such as exercise classes and massages. It can be a wonderful way to explore cities on a budget as there are tons of options available, especially in the warmer months.

Before Groupon, you would need to research all individual places to see if they were offering any special deals or coupons. Now, Groupon curates all local deals into one easy-to-use website and mobile app! If you're looking to purchase a one-time yoga class or a skydiving trip, Groupon is your best friend!

9 12. Tighter Airport Security

Even though this can be seen as a good or bad thing and constantly sparks a lot of controversies, it definitely deserves a spot on this list. Ever since the events of September 2001, airport security has gotten a lot tighter to prevent future attacks.

Back before the WTC attacks in 2001, your loved ones would be able to walk with you all the way to your gate before you had to get on your plane. Now, the furthest your friends and family can go to see you off is right before security. There are also a lot more restrictions in terms of what you can and cannot bring with you.

Although it can be a pain to deal with, at least there is a sense of safety involved with strict security.

8 11. You Can Take Photos Anywhere & Share Them Immediately

Thanks to both social media and smartphones, we're able to take photos with just a single tap of a button. Not only that, but they can be uploaded in the blink of an eye to sites such as Instagram or Twitter.

Before phone cameras got more advanced, you would need to rely on stand-alone cameras which were expensive and required a lot of care. Now, we're able to keep all of our amazing photos in one single place and can choose when and where we share them with other people.

Although, we can't say technology is always a one-way street as Polaroid cameras are becoming popular once again!

7 10. Innovative Travel Essentials

Nowadays, you can solve practically any common travel problem by just browsing your local department stores.

There are so many gadgets on the market today that make traveling a breeze. For instance, portable steam irons like the one pictured above that make ironing your clothes on the go quick and easy. Hitting the beach? Now you can buy beach towels that repel sand thanks to advancements in engineering.

With so many options available, it can be tempting to buy them all. Just make sure to try and stick with the ones you know you absolutely need!

6 9. Digital Music

The evolution of music has certainly been an interesting one. Remember the days of having to carry around a walkman CD player if you wanted to listen to tunes on the go? Before that, people would rely on cassette tapes to hear their favorite songs.

Now, we're able to use our phones or other small audio devices to listen to whatever we want, whenever we want. Instead of having to listen to that baby a few aisles down crying or that one couple behind you arguing, you're able to instantly plug in and zone out completely.

5 8. Better Luggage Options

To go along with our last point, luggage itself has also changed a lot throughout the last 50 years. For example, most suitcases nowadays have wheels that can turn in any direction, making it easy for travelers to walk side-by-side with their bags instead of dragging it behind them.

Travelers also have a lot more options in regards to luggage styles, colors, and luggage tags. Some carry-ons even have USB ports where you can charge your phone while waiting in the airport, a problem that many people commonly run into when traveling.

4 7. No More Smoking on Flights

1990 marks the year that smoking was banned on all domestic flights, according to Forbes.com. By 1995, Delta would also ban smoking on all international flights. Many airliners would then follow suit, and now no matter which aircraft you board, you will most likely find a no smoking sign above your head.

It can be hard to believe that just 30 years ago, people were able to smoke cigarettes on airplanes. Today if you were to perform the same act, you could face a hefty fine for doing so.

3 6. You Can Experience the World Anywhere Thanks To Social Media

Because of websites such as Instagram and Tumblr, we're able to experience the world from our own living room. Even though being able to physically travel to certain locations is the best way to gain valuable experiences, sometimes it isn't possible.

Now we're able to share photos and videos to anywhere around the world and talk about the amazing meal we had in Berlin, or the skydiving adventure we went on in Ireland. This also gives ambitious travelers a way to research certain resorts, restaurants, or activities without being limited to just what's presented on the company websites.

2 2. Televisions in Planes

Depending on how long your particular flight is, the aircraft you board may have TVs on the back of each seat, making it easy for each individual person to watch what they want, when they want.

According to Virgin.com, the first individual TVs were introduced on Virgin Atlantic flights back in 1991, and have recently evolved to offer more than just TV channels. Now, travelers can choose from a variety of movies to watch while on board a long flight.

1 1. Don't Want to Watch a Movie? You Can Buy Wifi

Watching a movie you've already seen dozens of times can get boring, so why not use your electronic devices while 30,000 feet in the air?

Many airlines today now offer wifi for their customers to use, as long as you're willing to pay for it (which depending on how long your flight is, can be absolutely worth it!). This can be extremely beneficial to people who travel for work and still want to stay in touch with their colleagues. It can also be handy for those who want to read articles on their favorites sites or watch Netflix during their trip.

It really is crazy to think how far technology has evolved in the past 50 years!

References: Forbes.com, WWOOF.net, TravelandLeisure.com