How to Use Technology to Plan a Remarkable Vacation

If you can still remember the Flintstone’s, chances are you are not quite as savvy with some of the newest travel technology as the current generation, but it’s never too late to learn.

Tweet a Twacation

Twitter is a powerful tool for friends and family to help keep track of each other, but it also happens to be a nifty search tool in planning some pretty remarkable vacations. Twitter feeds enable various companies, such as Travelocity and American Airlines, to keep their followers up to the minute on the very latest deals and savings going on.

If you thought that registering for a daily travel newsletter was up to the minute, you’re actually missing out on some of the best “last minute” deals available each day. Many of these bargains are only offered on Twitter (United Airlines calls them, “Twares”), so if your not already Tweeting, it might be a good idea to set up an account. An account is not necessary for the search function, but it will allow you to follow other vacationers and ask questions.

The search feature on Twitter allows visitors the opportunity to type keywords, find great deals (type-in “travel deals”), and locate fun things to do (“Christmas festival”, “water park”, etc). A nifty trick is to use a minus sign in front of your initial keywords, followed by another keyword which expresses content you’d like to extract from your search. For instance, if you type, “ski colorado – durango”, it will eliminate all ski related subjects in Colorado associated with Durango, and so forth.

While you’re at your destination, you can also use Twitter to keep abreast of any special events in the area, such as festivals or new exhibits, while also gathering quick consumer reviews on restaurants and attractions. The easiest way to follow this type of “on the road” update, is through a compatible cell, such as an iPhone.

Traveling Via iPhone

Computers are great, but what limits their practicality while on vacation, is their pure cumbersome size and design. This is where an iPhone makes perfect sense. Using one of the many travel applications available (for various fees), you can literally place the entire world at your fingertips, including packing reminders (your toothbrush), and proof to your friends (via GPS) that you are actually where you say you are.

A few popular, “free”, applications to keep in mind for your next trip are Wikitude, Citysearch, GasFoodLodging.mobi, and OpenTable. Wikitude is a useful travel guide holding over 300,000 points of interest. Citysearch locates your favorite shops, restaurants, and night venues. If you like to take roadtrips, GasFoodLodging.mobi helps locate lodging, food, and gas; while the application, OpenTable, helps discern which restaurants are worth your while. OpenTable works by offering consumer ratings along with a sample menus of the types of food served.

Fred Flintstone only wishes he had this kind of practical, technological convenience!