Social media use for travel planning

Summer vacation season is just around the corner so why not let your friends help you plan your next trip.  While research finds that it is after the holiday trip that people primarily use social media, it also suggests that in terms of social media influence on holiday plans there is a strong correlation between perceived level of influence from social media and changes made in holiday plans prior to final decision. Most trusted holiday-related information sources:

1.  Friends and relatives
2.  Information provided by other travellers in various websites
3.  Social media
4.  Official tourism websites (state/government owned)
5.  Shows or documentaries in TV, in radio, articles in newspapers and magazines
6.  Travel agents
7.  Advertisements in TV, radio, newspapers and magazines

If the plethora of “social travel” apps, sites, and services is any indication, the days of user reviews from strangers on sites like TripAdvisor and Expedia may be numbered. The mini boom of  Gtrot, Gogobot, Afar, Trippy, Tripped Off, and Tripl, etc. are all aiming to become your go-to resource for sharing travel tips on Facebook. They’re pitching themselves as crowd-sourced alternatives to purportedly planted or inaccurate reviews on the established travel portals. Who better to trust than people you know, right? 

Our favorite integration of social media: the vacation-rental service AirBnB has a useful feature highlighting your Facebook friends’ (and their friends’) available apartments.

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