The wired-world of the internet seems to be intrinsically linked with the lives of typical travellers because in this day and age we go online to organise just about every last aspect of every trip. From booking your plane ticket to booking your accommodation well in advance. Heck, we even hunt bargains online and one just has to wonder how people travelled before we had the internet.
You look at what Google Maps does for the traveller with all the features it has, from locating your destination to the integrated route planner and you could perhaps resign to the fact that we had physical maps, but it just couldn’t have been the same, could it? We also go online to read reviews of places we want to sleep at and of some of the places we want to visit, so it’s safe to say that the internet makes for a huge part of the modern day traveller’s life.
As with so many other things though, to get the most out of what the internet has to offer travellers, you need to have more than just basic Googling skills. At the end of the day it’s about connecting with those people on the “other side” — connecting with those publishers who share their reviews and recommendations and those service providers who post their services online with the hope of attracting travellers such as yourself.
This is where the importance of networking comes into play. You need to establish relationships with other fellow travellers if you’re to make the most out of all your travels. I mean simply firing off an email to someone who’s been to where you plan to go could save you loads of cash or even save your life in some instances, so even if you’re a shy and reclusive solo traveller (quite the paradox really), you simply need to make connections with other travellers.
Fortunately though, connecting with fellow travellers is actually much easier than you think. There’s kind of like an unwritten law amongst travellers that we just help each other out whenever we can, even if just by way of advice. One of my own fellow travelling buddies who lives in South Africa told me all about how when he went to Brazil, a stranger who’d previously been to his own country could immediately tell that he was a million miles from home and needed some guidance as to how to get to where he was to be accommodated and what to watch out for. The Brazilian local even offered to hook him up with a SIM card so that he could get his Uber set up and travel much easier in that way.
That’s just one example of this unwritten honour amongst travellers that we just help each other out whenever and however we can. It’s ultimately a matter of sharing experiences so that there’s a common knowledgebase of sorts which every traveller can draw on to get the very best out of each next trip you take.