Crowd-sourcing for travel advice

Three guys looking at a smartphone.

Three guys looking at a smartphone. Photo: Dave Fayram / Flickr

Many of my best travel experiences have come about through recommendations from friends. The Taiwanese guy who took me to a stylish lounge bar in Taipei with the hidden entrance; the Australian expat who showed me his favorite ramen restaurant in Tokyo; and the list goes on.

Thanks to the Internet , old-fashioned word-of-mouth is now exponentially more powerful. Instead of being limited to our own circle of friends, we can tap a website’s entire community for good information.  Many of these new websites were featured in this article in The New York Times: Crowd-sourcing for travel advice.

The sites themselves have varying business models. Some are independent social networks, while others are add-ons to Facebook and existing platforms.  So you might end up getting advice from strangers, or from your own friends.

How do you feel about using these tools? I prefer to reach out to friends I’ve met on previous trips, since I’m more likely to get a good response.  These friends know me and my travel tastes, so their advice is more likely to be a suitable fit.  But it’s hard to pass up on accessing the collective knowledge of a bigger community.

On a related note, the social media news website produced a great video on how to use Twitter Advanced Search to mine tweets for travel information.  The trip-planning section starts at 1:14 minutes in:


What websites do you use to research for trips? Please share your tips in the comments.

Posted by | Comments Off on Crowd-sourcing for travel advice  | August 26, 2011
Category: Notes from the collective travel mind, Travel Tech

Comments are closed.