Today I would like to talk about how technology and social media is changing the travel industry and people's travel behavior.
Let's take Instagram for instance.
331 Million posts are shared worldwide with the hashtag #travel
70% of people share their own travel photos
67% look for inspiration of new places to travel
62% build excitement for upcoming trips
Long gone is the time when you had to book and schedule everything from start to the end on your own going through travel magazines or via a travel agency.
Everything can be done online.
Nowadays, you just need a return ticket, speak a bit of English, financial flexibility, a smartphone, and an internet connection to be able to travel to foreign countries and experience it as a local! Or you could just stay in the comfort of your home and travel to the other part of the world by scrolling through your feed! #staycation
This is so powerful!
And I even find myself doing that more and more. The more I travel, the less I plan my trips ahead.
I like to have an itinerary idea of what to see and what to do, but otherwise, I just go with the flow. It is not made for everyone, and other people might find it stressful!
BUT I believe it is more enjoyable to experience a country this way rather than being on a schedule from the beginning to the end.
After all, you are going on holidays to switch off from your busy schedule right? So why bring it with you on holidays!
That is one of the reasons why Millennials seem to make the best travelers. They are spontaneous and travel with a purpose.
Technology is a big part of every millennial's life. We all carry everywhere we go this piece of technology that fits into our pockets and allows us to be exposed constantly to content that we like, follow or subscribe to.
We are in this continuous loop of information being provided via different mediums like blog posts, vlogs, youtube channel, Facebook posts, tweets or Instagram posts. It has become easier today to follow your passion for traveling and be inspired on daily basis by scrolling your social media feed.
Traveling has become accessible to everyone owning a device connected to internet and millennials today do not want to fall into the tourist traps and spend their holidays in hotels or big resorts.
They want authenticity, they want to experience traveling to a foreign country and experience it like a local. They would rather stay in a cheap hostel and taste the local street food to save on a budget and get to know the locals and other travelers rather than staying in a hotel room on their own and eating in fancy restaurants.
They are looking to learn something from their trips.
And that is exactly what applications and online services are offering today. The flexibility to book everything on the go and experience your journey at your own pace.
You can get inspired from travel influencers via social media networks like Instagram, Facebook, twitter, youtube
You can book your flights with the best fares using websites or applications like Skyscanner, Google flights or Momondo.
You can book your accommodation and live like a local using Airbnb or Couchsurfing.
You can get around a foreign city not speaking the local language and not being scared of being ripped off by using applications like UBER, Lyft or Grab.
You can connect with locals or traveler communities by posting a question on travel Facebook groups, twitter or quora and they will be able to provide you with their best tips and personal experiences.
You can keep in touch with your friends and family and let them know that you are ok by using applications like Messenger, Viber, Skype or whatsapp.
You can take photos and videos of your holidays directly from your smartphone and don't need to look for an honest looking person to take a photo for you! (thank you selfie sticks)
Who could imagine doing this 10 years ago?
We live today at an exciting time where technology is breaking the countries borders, but also empowering people to follow their passion for travel and be able to share it with the world in a matter of minutes. And the best thing about it is that it is moving fast and is far from stopping soon!
So, if you are not exploiting all these resources today, now is the time to do it. Whether you can afford to travel to other countries or stay home, there will always be a way to discover new things about the city you live in or new cultures from different countries around the world just a couple tap away.
All you need is a smartphone, an internet connection and a passion for traveling!
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