With more information than ever online, travelers have taken to using the Internet as a way to plan their trips on a scale that’s never been seen before. Review sites and websites that offer great discounts and savings are more popular than ever, with travelers now really being able to plan almost every detail of their trip, find out about hidden gems, educate themselves about scams in their destination, and weed out any attraction that’s really not worth the entry fee. Social media is also playing a more important role in travel preparations. However, how can you use social media to help plan your vacation? It’s not as complicated as you might think.
There are literally thousands of travel bloggers out there who, between them, have a whole lot of expertise when it comes to the world of travel. There are bloggers for every style - luxury bloggers, backpackers, family bloggers, people who primarily go on city breaks. If you can think of it, chances are there’s a blog about it. Most bloggers link to their Facebook and Twitter sites on their blogs, so once you find their social media account, don’t be afraid to Tweet at them or send them a message. Bloggers love knowing that people who visit their site are actually reading what they’ve written, and will be more than happy to answer your questions, whether you’re asking about the best hotel to stay at, which bus company to use, or the best place to grab a bite for lunch.
Almost all of the writers on this website have their owntravel blogs. Engage with our travel bloggers by visiting their websites andfollowing them on social media. See the completelist of RoamRight bloggers.
If a travel brand doesn’t represent themselves actively on Twitter or Facebook, then they’re doing something wrong. The people who run brand accounts are knowledgeable about who or what they’re representing, and, of course, they want to put their best foot forward in public. Don’t be afraid to tweet at hotels or local tourism boards asking for recommendations. Have a question about flights? Tweet at the airline that you want to fly with. Brands have staff whose job it is to respond to queries they receive on social media. Another benefit of following brands on social media is that they often run special offers, too, and their followers are the first to find out about them.
A Twitter chat is exactly what it sounds like - a discussion that takes place on Twitter. The various chats usually happen at set times each week, and all follow a pre-designated hashtag. A few questions are asked, people respond, and some pretty useful information that you can utilize in planning your trip is bound to surface. Some handy ones to follow are #TTOT, #ExpediaChat, #WeGoSolo, #TNI, #TripItChat and #NUTS, but there are a whole lot more out there. You can participate in the chats actively if you like, or if you see an answer that piques your curiosity, ask whoever tweeted it for more information - you may have found the source you’ve been looking for regarding the best boutique hotel to stay it in Curacao, or tips for finding a rainforest guide in Sumatra.
What are some ways you use social media to plan your travels?
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Tom has always had the travel bug and, after quitting his call centre job in the UK, he packed up and moved to South Korea to teach English for almost four years. Since moving on from South Korea, he's been travelling the world and loves exploring city streets, trying delicious new food, meeting great people and taking way too many selfies with his phone, although he'll disagree with you on that last point. Read about Tom's adventures on his blog, Waegook Tom, and follow him on Instagram and Twitter.
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