According to a report by Hotels.com, 81 percent of respondents said smartphones are their number one travel accessory.
This is important to note, as international travellers (unless they have purchased a local data plan or are willing to pay roaming fees) will be relying on wifi for their smartphone usage.
64 percent also admitted to looking at friends’ social media so they don’t lose touch, while 50 percent admitted to uploading photos on social media just to show off. Men are also three times more likely than women to be competitive Facebookers and compare their travel posts to others
This global study of 9200 travellers across 31 countries, revealed that people like to gloat on social media, use mobile data to search for their next meal and engage in Facebook competitions with travel friends.
Smartphones versus beach chairs
Respondents revealed they spend on average almost two-and-a-half hours a day topping up their tan, compared to three hours a day glaring at mobile devices. In fact, just over six percent of travellers will spend more than seven hours a day with their smartphone in their hands.
Post a pic or it didn’t happen: social show offs
50 percent of travellers admit to uploading photos to social media just to show off and 28 percent do it to check into places on social media to make friends jealous. Over a quarter (28 percent) say they comment on friends’ posts just so they don’t miss out on anything out while they’re away.
Americans channel their inner competition through facebook travel face-offs
This is when you check your travel buddy’s social posts to make sure your content is better than theirs! Interestingly, three times more men compete with their friends than women. Additionally, 20 percent spend their time seeing how many likes and comments their posts have.
The most used social channels while travelling include:
1. Facebook (77 percent)
2. Instagram (32 percent)
3. YouTube (25 percent)
4. Twitter (24 percent)
5. Pinterest (14 percent)
Wifi: amenity or necessity?
31 percent of people only select a hotel if it offers free wifi, and 17 percent of men are willing to pay for wifi access in a hotel but only 12 percent of women are willing to do the same. Women (12 percent) also care less about having access to wifi in general while traveling compared to men (nine percent).
It seems that tech may just be a necessity, as 64 percent admit to looking at friends’ social media updates and 28 percent say they comment on posts so they don’t lose touch. FOMO is real, and it’s evident.
When it comes to app behaviour, travellers are either posting on Instagram, getting lost in a destination or messaging people to say they’re having the time of their lives. The top five app categories used while traveling, according to respondents, are:
1. Social media (66 percent)
2. Messaging (50 percent)
3. Mapping (43 percent)
4. Travel (39 percent)
5. Music (32 percent)
Maps and translators: mobile does it all
More than half of American travellers (51 percent) use the map features on their smartphones to get around. Globally, 30-39 year-olds use language translation apps the most, with 13 percent of Americans in this age group utilising apps that offer these services.
Further local survey data:
- On average, people take three trips a year and spend 11 nights in a hotel
• 43 percent of people have booked a hotel on mobile
• Over half (53 percent) have made a same-day hotel booking
“For travellers the mobile effect begins with booking, as 43 percent of people in our study have booked a hotel on mobile,” said Dan Craig, senior director of mobile of the Hotels.com brand.
“It’s therefore no surprise that today’s modern tourist is so reliant on their smartphone, and as technology is advancing it’s becoming a more indispensable travel companion.”