Facebook Is Actually Good For Travellers

Facebook Is Actually Good For Travellers

Sharing the triumph of our little Honda Civic. It reached 180,000 kms on the El Salvadorean highways.

I know Facebook gets a lot of flak for being a useless activity and everyone online wants you to eschew the time-wasting hours of social media for something more useful, like saving the turtles or working on world peace.

But I believe that Facebook is actually a boon for travellers around the world, in more ways than one.

Here are some of my thoughts on the matter:

  1. Facebook helps travellers feel less homesick. When you have been travelling for a while, you sometimes come to a strange bed in a strange hotel room and you just want a piece of home. Facebook is the ultimate saviour in fending off homesickness. You look at pictures of friends back home doing the same things they did when you were back home. You look at pictures of your family members posting the stuff they posted when you were home. It kind of makes you feel for a moment or two until you look around you that you are home and surrounded by the comforts of home. It is a good delusion while it lasts.
  2. Facebook allows you to keep in touch with all the people that you meet randomly while travelling. It is hard to keep in touch with people from everywhere at the same time, but Facebook makes it easy. You can look at pictures of people you met in India, Australia, and Thailand easily on one page in a few minutes. You can keep in touch and then go meet up with these people in random places around the world. It is especially a boon for a person like me who is generally horrible at keeping in touch.
  3. Facebook motivates you to travel. You look at people on your news feed travelling to cool places, and that motivates you to travel on your own. You are motivated to start saving up instead of spending money on crap. You are motivated to start looking at guide books, instead of cat videos. You are motivated to start talking to people from random countries around the world asking them about their country, rather than chat to the same people in the lunch hall everyday.
  4. Last but not least, Facebook helps you stay in touch with the people back home while you are on your travels. My mother is able to keep an eye on where I am, how I am doing, and how I am feeling, depending on the items I post, the pictures I post and the expressions I post. She can feel like she’s still close to me, no matter where in the world I am. Even though she would rather I be home, this way at least she knows how I am doing while I am in what she believes dangerous countries around the world.

I am sure there are other reasons why Facebook is good for travellers. I know that people want to put Facebook down, but in my opinion, my Facebook account has been a boon. I’m able to feel connected to people back home, to my city Toronto, and to my friends met while travelling, in one go.

Let me know what you think of Facebook and its effect on travellers.

– This post has been published in Nacaome, Honduras.
If you haven’t heard of the Big Trip yet, you are in for a treat. Boom & Thenix are driving a 1998 Honda Civic down to the southern most tip of South America, through the West Coast of the US, Mexico, Central and South America. We left on July 17th for this amazing adventure with the help of our sponsor Wise24. For a map of our trip so far, please click here. If you have questions about costs, visas, or anything else trip-related, please see our post on The Big Trip or check out our Archives. Add us to Google+.
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8 thoughts on “Facebook Is Actually Good For Travellers

  1. Possibly travelling makes us use Facebook as it was intended to be used? For keeping friendships alive and making the world a smaller and closer place instead of to share stupid pictures asking for 100,000 likes or your family will die or something stupid. It means you don’t use it for those stupid attention-seeking statuses, instead kit to share your happiness with your friends and family.. Taking it back to basics and away from boredom posts..

    1. Yes that’s so well put, Iruthnum. I feel like you hit the nail on the head. I am using Facebook to its fullest now and it feels good, not like a waste of time. When I go on Facebook back home just to pass time, I am just being lazy. I am not thinking outside of the box to spend my time, but just plonking down on a couch and scrolling through my newsfeed.

  2. when you scroll through your news feed – regardless of at home or at travel; could you not find yourself seeking to fulfil the same needs? Belonging, understanding, and a sense of community?

    I think the main difference that you wrote about so well is that when travelling, the sense of community can be derived primarily through a source like facebook (and calls, and emails) alone. Whereas when you are not travelling and you seek community through facebook, you should get up off your couch and take advantage of life in front of you!

    As always, another good post. Keep it up.

    1. I agree with your point entirely. When you are at home, you can and should go meet your family and friends in person. It is easy to do so and should be done. While travelling, Facebook pictures and updates are a good reminder of what you have left behind and what you are going to go back to.

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