Metaverse and the Future of Flight

Help Airbus imagine the travel experience of the future through the use of the metaverse!

Challenge Overview

As the metaverse grows and matures, it has the potential to change how we interact and experience just about everything - including travel.   In the broadest sense, the metaverse is an embodiment of the internet as a virtual or digital world that is experienced through the use of digital tools, including augmented reality (AR) or virtual reality (VR).  Many people already dabble in the metaverse by playing games and/or socializing.  But businesses are increasingly probing this new space for its potential to enhance our real life experiences.  If you’ve ever wondered how the digital world could improve the travel experience, then this challenge is for you.

Airbus is the manufacturer of some of the world’s most innovative commercial aircraft and is a global leader in the aerospace industry.  They have a long history of experimenting with and adopting new technologies, and they want to hear your ideas for how the metaverse can be used to provide better services and experiences for passengers traveling by air.  

This challenge is open to anyone with a good idea for how Airbus can use the metaverse to improve the passenger experience.  Five winners will share in a $30,000 prize purse for their compelling ideas.  




Challenge Guidelines

The metaverse is suddenly everywhere, and everyone is getting involved!  Like many other new technologies, the possibilities seem endless.  Sometimes it’s hard to get past all the hype to envision the tangible ways that it can impact your industry or specific area.  

Airbus is just starting to explore this new space.  With this challenge, we are tapping into the power of the crowd to understand some of the potential of the metaverse, specifically with respect to the passenger’s door-to-door experience.  We are looking for immersive, experiential ways in which a passenger can interact with the metaverse during the travel process.  Ideally, we would like submitted ideas to be supported by some sort of proof of concept, such as a short executable or a video walkthrough.  If you’re an experienced developer, show us your chops!  But if you’re new to this and have an idea, we also want to hear from you.  In that case, you can help us see your vision through other visualization tools, such as story-boarding or animation.

We are open to anything that improves a passenger’s experience, whether your idea provides a new way to complete a task, increases accessibility, or offers a service that was previously not available .   Examples of ways in which the metaverse could impact the travel process include:

  • Providing passengers with opportunities to pre-select or pre-order things before travel or when purchasing air travel tickets, where VR provides a richer understanding of the selection being made:
    • Seat assignments
    • Meals
    • In-flight entertainment options
  • Helping passengers with accessibility and inclusion concerns by giving them access to a virtual reality (VR) experience that allows them to familiarize themselves with their path to their seats from the moment they arrive at their airport to the moment they are seated.
  • Offering passengers opportunities to enjoy immersive experiences that distract them from the confines of the aircraft cabin during long flights:
    • Gaming or metaverse entertainment
    • Other in-flight experiences, such flight simulation for the aircraft you’re in
  • Helping passengers use their flight time efficiently:
    • Access to collaborative tools for work or social networking
    • Access to educational tools or online classrooms
    • Virtual shopping or running of errands
  • Anything that improves the door-to-door travel experience

These suggested starting points are meant to inspire you and represent just a small glimpse of the possibilities.  Although we don’t expect a fully-built out experience, we do need to see enough detail in your submission to understand its potential feasibility, functionality, and any possible roadblocks.  Your submission should include a description of benefits and advantages provided by your idea, some sort of visualization of your ideas - like a short video walkthrough or a storyboard, and optionally an executable file or a link to your experience.



Airbus will recognize five winners with a total prize purse of $30,000.  The team submitting the most compelling vision for how the metaverse can improve the passenger experience will win $10,000, and four other teams will win $5000 each.  




First place (1 winner)



Second place (4 winners)



Total prize purse




Open to Submissions: April 26, 2022

Submission Deadline: June 14, 2022 @ 5pm ET

Judging: June 14 - July 12, 2022

Winners Announced: July 19, 2022


How do I win?

To be eligible for an award, your submission must, at minimum:

  • Leverage the metaverse,
  • Be applicable to Airbus and aligned with their vision to be a pioneer in the aerospace industry for a better-connected, safer and more prosperous world,
  • Thoughtfully address the submission form questions, and
  • Be scored higher than your competitors!

You may submit up to five unique entries. If you submit more, only the first five entries will be reviewed. Each entry requires a unique proof of concept.


Judging Criteria

SectionDescriptionOverall Weight
User Experience

The approach is easy to understand and intuitive to use.  The intent is well-communicated to Airbus.

It creates a transformative experience for the user:

  • Is powerful
  • Is immersive
  • Is fun and novel
  • Makes the travel experience feel new
  • Is easy to use and compelling
Potential impact on commercial aviation and/or Airbus

The concept improves the travel experience or associated processes for passengers, airline personnel, and/or other stakeholders.  It adds value to the passenger’s experience.

For example, a solution with a strong impact on commercial aviation could improve the flight experience for passengers, increase the efficiency of pilots or flight attendants, or provide a revenue opportunity for airlines or Airbus.


The concept is new or new to commercial aviation.  

It affords a capability that is only possible due to the use of the metaverse.

A novel solution may leverage the metaverse to improve upon existing ways of doing something or propose something entirely unique.

Ease of Implementation

How easy would it be to bring this concept to life? 

Consider if the technology is readily available, if it requires a large investment in hardware, regulatory approval, or other substantial hurdle to implementation.




Participation Eligibility:

The challenge is open to all adult individuals, private teams, public teams, and collegiate teams. Teams may originate from any country, so long as US Federal Sanctions or other Official Sanctions do not prohibit participation. Submissions must be made in English. All challenge-related communication will be in English.  Airbus employees are not eligible.

No specific qualifications or expertise in the field of the metaverse or air travel is required. Prize organizers encourage outside individuals and non-expert teams to compete and propose new solutions. 

To be eligible to compete, you must comply with all the terms of the challenge as defined in the Challenge-Specific Agreement.

Registration and Submissions:

Submissions must be made online (only), via upload to the website, on or before 5:00 PM EDT on June 14, 2022. No late submissions will be accepted.

This challenge allows up to five submission per individual/team. You are not required to submit multiple entries. Should you have multiple entries to submit to this challenge, they will be considered separately. Whether or not multiple entries from the same individual or team may be chosen for a prize is up to the discretion of the Challenge Sponsor. 

Intellectual Property Rights:

As detailed in the Challenge-Specific Agreement – All intellectual property rights, if any, and all inventions, patents, patent applications, designs, copyrights, trademarks, trade secrets, software, source code, object code, processes, formulae, ideas, methods, know-how, techniques, devices, creative works, works of authorship, publications, and/or other intellectual property (“Intellectual Property”) developed by Innovator as part of the Submission will remain with Innovator, subject to the following condition:
If Challenge Sponsor notifies Innovator that Submission is eligible for a Prize, Innovator will be considered qualified as a finalist (“Finalist”). Finalist must agree to grant to the Challenge Sponsor a royalty free, non-exclusive license in respect of all such intellectual property rights, if any, for the purposes of commercial exploitation of the idea or concept demonstrated by the Submission. Notwithstanding granting the Challenge Sponsor a perpetual, non-exclusive license for the submission, Finalist retains ownership of the submission.

Awarding of the Prize:

The Individual Submitter or Team Captain is automatically designated as the Recipient of the prize monies. The Individual’s or Captain’s name must also match the Authorized Person on the receiving Bank Account. No changes are permitted to the prize Recipient after the Submission Deadline date. If you wish to change who would receive the prize monies, those changes must be completed prior to the Submission Deadline. View our Knowledge Base article here for how to change Team Captains.

Judging Panel:

The determination of the winners will be made by a group of people as determined by Airbus.

Additional Information

  • By participating in the challenge, each competitor agrees to adhere to the HeroX Intellectual Integrity Policy and promises to submit only their original idea. Any indication of "copying" amongst competitors is grounds for disqualification.
  • All applications will go through a process of due diligence; any application found to be misrepresentative, plagiarized, or sharing an idea that is not their own will be automatically disqualified.
  • All ineligible applicants will be automatically removed from the competition with no recourse or reimbursement.
  • No purchase or payment of any kind is necessary to enter or win the competition.
  • Void wherever restricted or prohibited by law. 

Challenge Updates

2 more days to submit your questions and topics for the Q&A webinar!

May 24, 2022, 9 a.m. PDT by Natalie York

A reminder to all challenge participants that on June 1st @ 11:00 AM Eastern Time, HeroX and Airbus will be hosting a live Q&A webinar for the Metaverse and the Future of Flight challenge. 

Questions and topics must be submitted ahead of time during webinar registration, or posted in the challenge forum. No live questions will be accepted. Submit your questions by May 26th to have them answered in the webinar! 

Register and submit your questions below.

Click here to register

Have Questions? We have answers!

May 20, 2022, 2 a.m. PDT by Lulu

You won't want to miss this! Join the Metaverse and the Future of Flight Q&A Webinar on June 1st @ 11:00 AM Eastern Time.

You will learn exactly why Airbus launched the Metaverse and the Future of Flight challenge, how you can participate, and what you can win. PLUS Airbus will adress the questions and topics submitted by you! 

Please submit your questions and topics of interest while registering. If you have additional questions arise that you would like addressed, please post them in the challenge forum. Questions/topics will be accepted until May 26th.

See you there!

Click here to register

Let's take it from the top...

May 19, 2022, 12:06 p.m. PDT by Despina Maliaka

Dear Innovators,

We are sure you are already hard at work with your submissions and we wanted to send a bit of extra information your way. Check out our latest blog using the link below - we hope it gets those creative juices flowing even more!


What is the Metaverse?


1 Month Remains!

May 14, 2022, 6 a.m. PDT by Lulu

We are just 1 month away from our submission deadline for the Metaverse and the Future of Flight!

This message is to remind you to complete and finalize your submission before the deadline on June 14, 2022 5pm Eastern Time (New York/USA). The HeroX platform is automated so your submission must be finalized before that date and time for it to be considered for the judging stage.

View a how-to video on completing your submission here.

If you have any questions regarding the competition, please don’t hesitate to ask us directly or leave a comment on the forum. 

If you encounter any technical issues, please contact


Working from Home

May 13, 2022, noon PDT by Lulu

If you’re used to working in an office environment, the process of working on a crowdsourced project can be daunting. Luckily we’ve been doing this for a while, and we’d like to share with you the tips that we’ve learned along the way.

Here are three tips to optimize your work from home experience:

1. Focus on results, not time spent working

In an office environment, we’re often led to think that we should be working eight hours a day, five days a week. In reality, not all of these hours are productive. When you’re able to control your own time at home, it’s a good idea to structure your day around specific tasks and goals.

2. Find the tools that work for you

If you’re working on your project with a team, you’ll need to find a way to connect with them remotely. Your team members may be from all around the world, and it’s important to figure out an effective communication strategy. Slack is a great tool for instant messaging, group chats, document sharing and reminders. For video calls, Zoom is a good go-to.

3. Boost your team’s morale

It’s easy to feel isolated while you’re working remotely. If you’re working with a team, it’s a good idea to schedule regular check-ins to connect with each other and boost morale. Zoom meetings don’t have to be all work, all the time. Take the time to connect with your team and find ways to support one another.