Facebook Doubles As Unofficial Travel Agent

How does the modern traveler find inspiration for their next adventure? Well, it’s not likely through direct advertising.

In fact, a full 40% people planning a trip ignore tourism ads, according to fresh findings from Crowdtap.

By contrast, a full 65% of people find their next destination through friends and family on Facebook. To that end, no fewer than 70% of travelers share photos to Facebook and Instagram, while about 60% will post stories and statuses about their travels.

What’s more, 75% of millennials -- ages 18-to-34 -- look to reviews, blog posts, status updates and in-person conversations from “real people” to make travel decisions more than travel ads.

Yet, there are things brands go do to stand out. In particular, many travelers are seeking loyalty perks and exclusive deals to help guide their vacation plans. In fact, 62% of people decide where to go based on points, Crowdtap finds.

“Travel brands and marketers need to keep their ears to the streets, or in this case, the Web, to best engage today’s travelers,” according to Peter Storck, SVP of research and analytics  at Crowdtap.

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More broadly, 63% of people turn to word-of-mouth (WOM) recommendations from others who have previously visited a destination.

Would be travelers also prefer to explore local sites independently versus relying on ride-sharing apps with most renting cars (39%) or walking or biking around (22%).

As for desirable trips, 65% of people want adventurous outdoor activities, 63% seek local shopping, and 60% hunt for renowned food.

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