Photograph By: Dennis Spelt
Commuting and travel are among the most consistently stressful parts of modern daily life. Psychology Today writes that commuting is “a major cause of stress due to the unpredictability and a sense of loss of control.”
Music has often been used as an aid to pass travel-time more quickly, from car radios to portable music devices.
Eurostar and Sony have teamed up to help eliminate the stress associated with travel as best they can, with psychologically informed travel playlists, catering to specific needs of frequent travelers with the Sound Menu.
Sound Menu applies boundary pushing sound-cancellation technology and auditory psychology to help solve the inherent problems with travel. They offer playlists for focus, energy, and relaxation.
The project appears to orient toward those who have to frequently travel for work purposes, as many of the playlists describe their functionality in a work-based context. For example, the playlists “getting the job done” which is suggested for passengers trying to focus on work, and “a job well done” which encourages relaxation after a day of work.
Music has had a good track record of aiding travelers and workers. It can help drown out noises caused by other passengers, it provides entertainment, and can have calming effects on the listener.
Eurostar describe it as a tool "helping passengers get the most out of their journey, with carefully curated, music psychologist-led playlist".
The psychological and practical effects of music create countless benefits. The Sound Menu has taken advantage of these benefits, and applied them to the intersection of technology and travel, helping create a stress-free world.