Face it, most of us are connected wherever we are and no matter what we’re doing. Be it through a smart phone, computer, or a tablet, we’re emailing, searching the net, or just playing around on Twitter every day. This is true even when we’re away from home, be it for work or pleasure, which is how we came up with the February #TripItChat topic.
What is a Twitter chat? For those not familiar, TripIt holds a chat over Twitter on the third Thursday of each month from 2-3 pm Pacific Time under the hashtag #TripItChat. Every month, there’s a new travel topic where we encourage participants to share advice with one another. To learn more, please see: http://landlopers.com/2013/05/01/tripitchat/
Here are some of the key takeaways from our last #TripItChat on Connected Travel.
How Much is too Much?
We wanted to know what our followers do when they travel, so we asked them if they stay connected on the road and how they set the right balance of connectivity.
- @BrooksCruiseSvc said that staying connected is important as it allows her to travel more than she could otherwise.
- Many of our participants said they usually stay connected when they travel, but like co-host @LeeAbbamonte, they also like the occasional digital detox.
- The travel industry even got involved on this question with the luxury property @FSMaui saying they provide their guests with everything they need to stay connected—or not—and it’s up to them to choose.
- We can never seem to get away from work though; especially, for digital entrepreneurs like @SmashFlare who depend on tech when they travel.
Especially for first time international travelers, how to best be online and make the most efficient use of one’s limited time is important. So, we asked everyone to share their tips and favorite apps that help them be more productive on the road—other than TripIt, of course!
- For chat co-host @SandiMcKenna, staying in touch with friends and family is important. She relies on the apps like Skype, Twitter, Facebook and Facetime.
- It’s a fact of life that we’ll always need to find the nearest restroom and @RickGriffin swears by the Sit or Squat app.
- Many people are now amateur or professional mobile photographers like chat participant @Colleen_PNW who loves to use Instagram when she travels. Some great apps to edit those photos include Snapseed, Camera+ and VSCOCam.
- Cruise line and chat participant @AzamaraVoyages tweeted a great list of travel apps they share with their guests and can be found on their site.
Twitter chats are all about learning something AND having fun, so we thought it’d be neat to ask the participants if they could only take ONE gadget other than their phone on a trip, what would it be and why? The answers were just as entertaining as we had hoped.
- Documenting our travels is important and many people said they’d bring their camera, including @mcnuttsc who loves his Canon Digital SLR Rebel 3ti.
- Tablets were another popular answer, including @justacbusmom who said she never leaves home without her iPad.
- As we’d hoped, a lot of folks had fun with this question listing bottle openers, corkscrews, or even a mojito fountain, like @CharlesMcCool named.
- The more practical minded @SashasHandler listed the always-crucial gadgets of a spare battery or power source for the phone and an international power convertor.
As a tech company, we’re always looking at the latest trends coming up and we were curious as to what other folks thought the important trends in tech and travel are.
- Smart luggage, bags you can track, are a brand new thing and hopefully will mean no more lost bags. Cruises may be the first to adopt this new tech though.
- Chat co-host @OrlandoChris says he’s seeing more and more people taking the time to research destinations before leaving home, thanks to social media and travel blogs.
- Travel pro and TripIt friend @JohnnyJet brought up another great trend, keyless hotel rooms! Instead of a key, guests just use their smart phones in get into their rooms.
- On the heels of the @Qantas announcement about offering First Class passengers entertainment via virtual reality, chat participant @VoyagerVicki wondered what role augmented and virtual reality devices will play in the future of not just air travel, but travel in general.
It came up earlier in the chat, but thanks to smart phones and other mobile devices suddenly everyone is a photographer. How you process and edit those pics matters though, so we asked folks to share their favorite mobile photography apps.
- You have to share those impressive photos, and most of our followers prefer Instagram, but Snapchat, Twitter, and Facebook were other popular places to share prized vacation snaps.
- According to @hovelstay, using both VSCO Cam and Photogrid are the best ways to enhance any photo.
- Chatter @marinigh likes to keep things simple saying that she prefers to use the built in software on the phone, along with the apps InstaFit and PicStitch.
- Other popular apps mentioned include: Snapseed, Camera+, NightCap Pro, Instasize, and Instagram’s Hyperlapse for cool videos.
How do you stay connected on the road? Comment your input below!
Don’t forget to join us for the next #TripItChat on March 12th at 2:00 pm Pacific/5:00 pm Eastern when we’ll be talking about Spring Travel!