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How much of an Internet traveller are you?

Travel Forums General Talk How much of an Internet traveller are you?

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1. Posted by me.da (Full Member, 96 posts) 21 May '06 21:02

My last trip could never have happened without the internet-

i used it for plane/train/bus tickets, got most my jobs on it, hitched lifts, found yachts to jump aboard and WWOOF farms to go to, used it as guidebook/phrasebook, booked accommodation, stored my photos on it, and of course used TP for info and inspiration - i would have got nowhere without internet.

is anyone else this much of an internet traveller or is doing these things in the real world part of the experience?

2. Posted by Peter (Admin, 5355 posts) 21 May '06 22:14

Hey Mida,

We plan to publish the results of our member survey at the beginning of next month, which includes a question very similar to this one. Of course, the kind of person who frequents sites like Travellerspoint is probably much more likely to use the internet for planning their trip, so the results are pretty heavily leaning towards organising things online.

Me personally, I use it to do almost everything, though I still largely book my flights through a travel agent (not the short hop ones though).

3. Posted by MelesMeles (Full Member, 137 posts) 22 May '06 04:58

I try to do as much as possible over the internet as well. Bigger things like buying plane/ship tickets and booking accommodation, I'll do online for sure. And find out as much as I can about my destination, and transportation options.

4. Posted by moutallica (Respected Member, 122 posts) 22 May '06 08:50

I tend to do most of my research and booking online before I go. However, I don't like to research or book too much before I leave. I prefer getting to a place without already knowing everything about it, as to me that sort of ruins it. I don't like the feeling that I already know the place before I've been there. I like the surprise, and not having to think "oh, the website said I should go here, then here, and then there". If I haven't made any plans, then I am free to do whatever depending on what happens. Also, if you have no expectations, then you can't be disappointed.

For my upcoming trip, my girlfriend and I decided we should start our trip in Latvia in the spur of a moment. We both had barely heard anything about the country, but we saw a cheap flight online, read the one introduction paragraph to it from the Lonely Planet Europe book, and decided that it would be perfect. It took less than 20 minutes from the first "where should we go?" (although, we already knew we wanted to go to Europe) to having the flight all booked. Of course, this wouldn't be possible without the ease of looking for flights online.

5. Posted by t_maia (Moderator, 3291 posts) 22 May '06 14:25

I'm not much of an internet traveller. I love books, and while I try to find out as much as possible over the 'net, it is just a supplimentary source to a decent guide book.

When I'm in a foreign country lying in my hostel bed and trying to decide what I want to do tomorrow, I refuse to go to an internet cafe and look for the info online. (There are better ways to spent a holiday than in an internet cafe.) No, I rather crack open my guide book and pick from there.

That said, I do book hostels and flights online. Or at least use the prices I get online for reference when I check out what my travel agency has on offer.

6. Posted by Namaste (Budding Member, 46 posts) 23 May '06 01:10

Hello,
Well, I guess I'm a real internet traveller. It all depends on the sort of trip I'm planning... Booking online through an travel agency is of course the quickiest and most simple way. But when I decide to do a trip 'à la carte' and book everything seperatly, then I spent houuuuurs, days, weeks choosing a destination, searching for info about that country/place/time to go and itinerary, comparing prices/quality, checking for transport and accomodation, booking flights, transport, accom, even tickets for museums if needed.... I also always check for things to do/to see, to be sure that I won't miss a thing. But I do not really read the details about the sites online. During the trip I consult a travelbook where I can read about each site when I'm actually seeing it. (I like reading and could not really miss books either). These travelbooks have also great value when you need to look for accomodation or when you (are forced to) change your itinerary during travelling.
And, when I have no trip to plan.... then I still surf on travelsites , getting info and idees to add to my 'Travels to do'list (it's getting damned long! ). As a matter of fact, I spent most of my my free time travelling virtually around the world.... It's one way to keep on dreaming while at home....
Grz,

7. Posted by moutallica (Respected Member, 122 posts) 23 May '06 10:20

Quoting t_maia

When I'm in a foreign country lying in my hostel bed and trying to decide what I want to do tomorrow, I refuse to go to an internet cafe and look for the info online. (There are better ways to spent a holiday than in an internet cafe.) No, I rather crack open my guide book and pick from there.

I completely agree with you there. I use the internet to plan, but once I'm on my trip, internet cafes are used mainly for e-mail contact with friends. I try to get in and out as fast as possible.

Guide books are great (and I usually have one), but the best advice comes from talking to other people. Either other travellers that have just come from where you are going, or, even better, from some locals that you might meet along the way. Always take a real person's advice (as long as they aren't on crack) over a guide book.

8. Posted by dgonzal4 (Budding Member, 2 posts) 25 May '06 03:09

well, I would say I do EVERYTHING on the internet, when I finally leave out home to star the trip, I have until the last detail in my agenda, the only problem is when travelling to countries where info is not much available ( like some african ones ), then you have to rely on advices from others or the few info you can find in the different sites...

cheers
David

[ Edit: Sorry, no promos please... ]

9. Posted by Clanger (Respected Member, 202 posts) 25 May '06 06:13

I usually read local pamphlets and books and chat to people and get advice from someone I meet. I did do a bit of forward planning on the internet, like when I went to a couple of cities for only a few days I booked the accommodation online. But I have been stung twice. Both were Travellerspoint places, but after arriving I find out they have lied about both price and facilities.

I would much rather turn up and find somewhere (from seeing it, sitting on the bed, listening to the fan etc.) before parting with my money.

Although that said, two times I turned up in Bangkok late at night I found no room at the inn (anywhere!) and ended up on a hotel lobby sofa (which I had begged for).

I think the planning and reading and chatting makes for part of the fun, sitting tappetty tapping on a keyboard for many hours isnt my idea of seeing a country or meeting people.

It makes me think of those travellers pre-internet.....they were a hell of a lot braver than us lot!

10. Posted by TravelMc (Respected Member, 91 posts) 25 May '06 09:17

I'm a mix - I book almost all my tickets online because its much cheaper and I have the control. I like finding out about the must see things in a new destination which is really easy to do at work during lunch. Then when I have arrived I like to just get out there and see/do/experience stuff. Often I only have a couple of days in a place so I have to be a bit more organised but if I have longer I prefer to just have a general idea of why I have decided to go to a place and do everything else 'on site'. As a sgl female I feel I need to be a bit more prepared than any of my male friends have been and I have had some horrors when I've not had accommodation booked already so on the whole I really appreciate the internet and the ways its made things so much more accessible. I don't feel the internet has taken the adventure out of travel or made us any less brave - possibly a little better informed but if you can get all you need from the internet why would you bother forking out hundreds or thousands of pounds going to see/experience something for yourself? Surely just getting on the road to adventure is an admirable, brave thing to do no matter what method you used to get it sorted.:)