How social media is changing the way we travel
So with the Canada Germany game on, and all these different countries watching in for the Olympics and all the money that has been invested to promote Canada as a tourist destination I thought I would cover the subject of travel and social media.
I am heading over to the UK for a week to visit family and hopefully know a fair amount about the country. However I thought if I was heading over to a place like Germany to watch lets say the the Away game of Canada vs Germany could I use Social Media to help me?
Demonstrate how we can spend pre-trip time investigating our holidays or trips
We have probably changed the way we book a holiday dramatically over the years. The travel agent and the travel magazine are probably the last things we may consider. Sites like Expedia.com and Travelocicity are some of the most visited websites on the Internet. People are spending hours perhaps days reviewing destinations.
So what about the likes of Facebook, Youtube, and Flicker
The one thing we have to realize is the amount of imagery that is getting uploaded to the sites.
The increase of mini digital video cameras and better quality pictures and easy uploads to the social media workhorse have seen an ever increasing amount of content uploads for us to review.
When I looked this morning
- 6,174 uploads in the last minute ·
- 558,832 things tagged with urban ·
- 2.4 million things geotagged this month
it provides an explore function with a map that groups all photos of that area in one location for you to check out and also suggests more images you may want to see. I typed in such terms as Munich (keeping on the Germany theme) and found 725 thousand images of Munich. And also typed in Cozumel and got 225 thousand images and yes they show exactly what you will be seeing if you go.
The site proclaims that in fact, every minute, 20 hours of video is uploaded to YouTube. Again many of these videos are people’ vacations experiences. Under Munich tourism videos I got a list of 166 (some official and lots not so official) videos of places and events to check out while visiting the country.
You cannot go on to Facebook and not see someone’s last holiday experience, with all the great captions that go with it. We personally these days are doing more to promote tourism destinations that some of the tourism organizations.
Other social media helps
The other day we talked about such smart phone applications such as yelp and urbanspoon that can help in the reviewing of locations and restaurants etc.. Both Blackberry and Apple have dedicated categories towards Travel, and most of them are free. These applications can range from packing guides, flight times updates, train schedules, currency, language translators, cheapest gas in town. The list is extensive….For Germany I found a complete guide to the Frankfurt Airport, how to get from check in to check out!!
Save you money
Other things to consider while over in the country is to use such items like Skype or WatsApp to talk or text with out incurring any long distance roaming charges by using wifi hookups
Before going places, login to some of the social media big players and type in your destination. You may be surprised how much information is being shared.
You also get some very honest reviews, and people are quite willing to answer any questions that you may have add # (hashtag destination search) to you twitter and see whom you may find and question away.
Most of what you get will be consumer generated and may show or talk about some of the things in a much more honest way than the official hotel site !!!!