Social media became a huge part of our lives in the last decade, with it playing an important role in our everyday activities, such as reading the news or talking to our friends and family. However, when it comes to booking holidays, most of us don’t think about social media as the place to look for our next vacation, but why not? Many platforms, such as Instagram or WhatsApp offer users the option of making reservations and purchases directly through their apps. It’s easy and it’s convenient but is it a safe way of booking your next vacation? Take a look at our list of pros and cons to find out!
What are the Advantages?
1. You can get some inspiration on travel destinations
When scrolling through different pics on your favourite social media channel, on a rainy Monday morning, you might actually come up with an idea for your next desired destination! Don’t underestimate the power of suggestion and stay open to any proposals, even if they seem far-fetched at first. Who knows? Maybe your favourite travel inspiration page will remind you how much you’ve always wanted to see the Taj Mahal or the Sydney Opera House.
2. You can contact the businesses directly
If you are considering booking your next holiday, social media is a great option as you can contact the businesses directly. According to The Independent, Instagram is committed to linking businesses and clients together in a ways that improves customer experience by introducing “New action buttons on business profiles, that will allow users to “book”, “get tickets”, “reserve” or “start order”, all without leaving the platform.” Instagram also stated: “Whether through the recent expansion of shopping on Instagram, introduction of action buttons or updates to Instagram Direct, business have more opportunities to connect and communicate with their customers.”
3. You can get some ideas on what you can do at your destination
Doing some research before going to a foreign location is always a good idea, wherever you decide to go. But how about learning about what you can do at your chosen destination on the same platform on which you book your tickets? This means you can save time and there’s less faffing about. Whether you’re the adventurous type or you just want to relax on a quiet beach with a mojito, social platforms can provide you with endless options and there is bound to be something for everyone. And, after all, what advice is better to take, than that of people who have already been to your desired destination? They have basically done all the hard work for you!
4. You can easily compare different offers
Due to the easy and direct access social media offers to clients looking to book their next vacation, it is noticeably simpler to compare different offers from similar providers on the same destinations. We can guarantee that it is far less complicated and more pleasant than wasting your time to surf the web for hours in the search for the best deal. Work smart, not hard!
What are the Disadvantages?
1. It could be more expensive than other booking methods
Having everything you need in one place is great because it can save you a lot of time and it is obviously much more convenient from all points of view. However, keep in mind that being comfortable comes at a price! Some of the offers you get could be a bit pricier than what you could find on other travel websites. When it comes to price vs. convenience it’s up to you to decide how you would rather do things but remember that there’s always a trade-off!
2. You could be missing some hidden gems
Seeing all of the beautiful places advertised on travel inspiration pages is a really good place to start if you have no idea where you want to go. But, as you already know, the most popular locations are not always the best ones! This world is filled with hidden gems when it comes to travelling and experiencing foreign cultures and sometimes it could be more beneficial if you do some research on forums or ask locals for advice, to get a more authentic experience. After all, you might just not be the kind of person who is looking to prioritise the ‘instagrammability’ of a tourist location and instead, want to go somewhere that not everyone else has been.
3. Your chosen destination might not look like it does in the Instagram pictures
Social media is very good at exclusively promoting the glamorous aspects of a destination and it can raise expectations up to the point that they are not connected to reality at all. According to The Independent, “one in five millennials and Gen X-ers have been disappointed by a destination when comparing it to what they saw on Instagram - especially iconic landmarks.” So, whenever you’re looking at all the pretty pictures on your feed and sighing at the thought of the wonderful sights, keep in mind that appearances can play a very significant role in shaping your perception and that things are not always what they seem to be!
4. Some offers could be scams
When booking a holiday on social media, like anywhere else on the internet, there is a chance you could stumble upon an offer that is in fact a scam! Try to avoid anything that looks fishy and stick to providers that you or someone you know has tried before. Another strategy that could work to manage the risk of getting scammed is sticking to the big names and remember, if a deal looks too good to be true, it probably is. Be careful when booking holidays on social media. After all, it’s better to be safe than sorry!
After reading the pros and cons of booking your holidays on social media, the decision is up to you. If you feel that the benefits outweigh the costs, you can open your phone apps right now and start looking! If you feel that you’re not so sure about it yet, perhaps it’s better to stick to the old-fashioned way. Whatever you decide, keep in mind that social media is becoming an increasingly big part of our lives whether we want it or not and that in the future, this is probably going to be something that everyone is doing. In the end, social platforms are here to stay and only becoming increasingly important aspects in our everyday lives.