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How to Use Social Media While on Vacation

July 22, 2011 by Blair Stover

Whether you’re an entrepreneur or simply someone who can’t disconnect from technology and social media, even when on vacation, you can put your obsession to good use. We caution you to take time away from the computer screens, Smartphones and from social media because being “constantly connected” online keeps you “disconnected” while you’re with your family and friends.

If you simply can’t bring yourself to disconnect from social media, however, you should find a way to use it to enhance your vacation experience with some of the apps that are available. When you’re new to an area use apps that are location-based, like Foursquare, to find attractions, restaurants, coffee shops and more that are close to where you are. You can search out the sites, read what previous visitors have said and make up your mind as to whether you’d like to visit. If you are using Foursquare, simply tap the Explore Tab and ask for recommendations on everything from shopping to nightlife to museum suggestions.

If you’re the kind who is always wanting to meet up with new people, check out some of the new group messaging services such as GroupMe or Fast Society. With these apps you can communicate with other people who are in the vicinity, message them and make plans to meet up. These apps are also useful if you’re traveling with a group and you’ve gone your separate ways for the afternoon but plan to meet up later – simply plug the information in and voila, everyone in the group message knows what’s going on.

Use social media to check out the hotels before you make a reservation. YouTube offers information and virtual tours of hotels. There is also a concierge service you can sign up for through Twitter. Check the hotel you plan to stay in and see if they offer Twitter concierge services; many Hyatt and Intercontinental Hotels participate. Followers of these hotels can also be privy to special “follower only” deals.

Use status updates and post photos sparingly to your social media sites, i.e. Facebook and LinkedIn or even Twitter. Individuals have been known to scour the social media sites for those individuals who are vacationing because they assume the traveler’s home is vacant. Don’t make yourself a victim of a potential crime by announcing, “The Smith family is going on vacation for two weeks!” Save the family vacation photos for when you return and share them with your friends and family once you’re back in your house.

Used wisely, social media can enhance your vacation experience.

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