Travel’s gone social: the travel industry in the age of social media

The world just isn’t as big as it used to be.

Traveling was once a hobby that required time, patience, and not-a-little elbow grease. Vacation preparations often had to be made via a travel agent, tickets had to be purchased in-person or over the phone, and you had to actually buy travel books before leaving home. Maps were pieces of paper, not points of light on a screen, and gate agents could be as mean as they wanted to be without ever being reprimanded. The effect of social media on travel has been profound. Truly, travel’s gone social, with apps for online dictionaries and hotel recommendations popping up every day. The Internet has been inundated with information on travel crazes and annoying family vacation photos.

But is it all bad?

travel's gone social; photo via

Sure, there will always be nostalgia surrounding the time it took to plan out a vacation to Cinque Terre, and the photographs from the family road trip will always be special precisely because they are so few. But there is certainly something good to be said about the way things are done now.

Now that travel’s gone social, a world of tips lies at your disposal. Need a romantic getaway? Check Pinterest; she’s got plenty. Craving a vintage-looking suitcase to tote around on adventures? Etsy’s got you covered. Need to make sure your hotel is up to health code standards? TripAdvisor is your new best friend. Facebook isn’t only a repository for annoying vacation photos, but also a source of check-ins, reviews and ideas that can ultimately change how your plan your time off.

Besides having all the recommendations you could ever need at your fingertips, it’s easier to be a tourist now that travel’s gone social. Companies that previously paid no attention to their customer experience are now forced to face their problems if they want to be competitive. You can talk to a company in real time via their Twitter or Facebook pages rather than holding for hours on the phone.

So, yes, travel’s gone social: travel is now friendlier than ever.

Travel with Pinterest Using Place Pins

Place Pins

Pinterest announced a new tool yesterday, called Place Pins. Place Pins is a product that can feature local spots that might interest users as well as help users plan vacations.

Place Pins can be found on a new pin board that features a map where users can pin locations such as restaurants, bars, tourist sites or different hot spots around a city and add descriptions about them. With partners such as Trulia, and OpenTable, these new Place Pins include a brief description of each location. Not only can users create their own Place Pins board for trip ideas or places to go, but they can also share their entire board with their friends.

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Plan Your Next Trip With Hipmunk

hipmunk In 2010, Hipmunk a travel planning start-up was created as website and mobile app. Hipmunk caters to spontaneous traveling as well as being a full-service travel site that takes the agony out of travel planning with an easy to use site and low fares. If that doesn’t lure you in maybe the cute little chipmunk in an aviation outfit will.  Continue reading