Is Twitter useful for travel?
comment 4 Written by on February 4, 2009 – 2:00 pm

Like many people, I didn’t get Twitter at first. “Bit limited, isn’t it?” I thought. “Why would I want to use that site to tell people what I’m doing or where I am. Might as well just update my status on Facebook.”

Ah, poor misguided fool that I was.

But although it’s proved its worth for following the exploits of celebs, like Twitter legend Stephen Fry, or reporting breaking news. Is it really any good for travellers?

The aspect that I totally overlooked about Twitter is the interactivity. It’s not just about telling the world where you are or what you’re doing; it’s about their reactions. This is great news for travellers.

Imagine you’re in an unfamiliar city, in a rather lame bar. Your guidebook only gives you options for places right across town. There’s nothing obvious on the doorstep. What do you do?

A quick tweet from your mobile saying “Vicky is looking for a cool bar near so-and-so street.” Next thing you know you have a reply from a friend who used to live there. “There’s a great speakeasy with live music and cheap cocktails, two blocks down,” they say and pass on an address. Bingo.

Guardian Travel has gone Twitter mad in the past week. First news of Benji Lanyado’s Twitter Trip to Paris (where he’ll be guided around the city by people’s tweets), then they got Twitchhiker on board, a guy who plans to travel for 30 days relying solely on the hospitality and advice of the Twitter community.

Will Twitter Trips catch on? I can certainly see people gleaning advice from time to time, if not for every move.

I’d love to give it more of a trial myself, however my mobile phone is from the dark ages and can’t even cope with sending a text back to the UK, let alone access the net. Best to follow Benji, who is in the middle of his Parisian jaunt right now.

Photo: Benji Lanyado arrives in Paris. (Reproduced with permission.)

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4 Responses to “Is Twitter useful for travel?”

  1. Twitter is a fantastic resource, but you’re right that it takes time to get your head round the concept.

    140 characters forces you to really think about what you want to say, which of course is no bad thing…

    There is a fab travel community on there, both industry players and travellers alike, sharing info and ideas as well as breaking news.

    Any negatives? There is a lot of information to sift that you don’t use , and it’s addictive – so expect work productivity to take a hit!

    By Sally B on Feb 5, 2009 | Reply
  2. p.s. !

    By Sally B on Feb 5, 2009 | Reply
  3. yeah its good for travel community. will it sustain ? good post

    By Kishore Choudhary on Feb 5, 2009 | Reply
  4. Thanks guys. I’m on

    By Vicky Baker on Feb 6, 2009 | Reply

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