Are you planning your next cruise or other travel adventure?
We always like to have at least one “next trip” in the planning stages. It gives us something to look forward to, and new destinations to focus on for pre-trip research. We like “getting in the know” before we go.
According to Dutch research, planning a vacation boosted happiness for some people even more than the trip itself. While we love our travels, we also enjoy researching travel destinations before our trips. (Check out this list of Fun Facts we’ve learned about destinations around the world.)
This summer I have embraced another tool to help with our travel planning. My newest travel planning resource is Pinterest.
For those of you who are not yet among its 100 million users, Pinterest is an online pinboard, where users share visual content —known as pins—to their “boards” or collections of images around a topic. Anyone can set up a free Pinterest account, and “pin” from a desktop computer, a tablet or your mobile smartphone. There are more than 50 billion “pins” on Pinterest.
- Create a new board in your Pinterest account for an upcoming trip. For example, for a cruise to Canada and New England this summer, we set up a Canada and New England Cruise board. For a trip to Ghent and Antwerp in Belgium, set up this board named Belgium. For a trip to Belfast in Northern Ireland, we created this board: Belfast, Northern Ireland.
Our next trip is a transatlantic cruise from Barcelona, Spain to Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, and we’ve just started pinning to our board for this adventure ever-so-creatively named Transatlantic Cruise.
2. Search in Pinterest Using Your Destinations and Other Key Words. For our trip to Belfast in Northern Ireland, I generally entered “Belfast” and Northern Ireland in the search box. For cruises, I search each port destination. If we are looking for something specific, such as the best lobster rolls in Prince Edward Island, I would search “Prince Edward Island”, “PEI” and “lobster rolls.” Or, for finding good tapas in Alicante, Spain during our transatlantic cruise, I would search “Alicante”, “Spain” and “best tapas”. I also might try “Alicante”, “Spain”, and “things to do”.
3. Pin Images of Interest to your Pinterest Trip Board. It’s just like tearing pages out of a travel magazine, only easier and less messy. Pin whatever catches your interest. If you just have a few minutes, pin a couple of things. You can go back at any time to study them closer.
4. Continue New Searches as Your Trip Gets Closer to Departure. With 100 million people pinning, there is significant new content on Pinterest every day. Once you have a board set up, and have search terms in mind, it’s easy to do a quick search for new pins on your destinations whenever you have a few minutes.
5. Take Time to Click Through to the Source of Your Favorite Pins. Many journalists, bloggers, and other destination experts create “Pins” as a way to promote their content. If the image topic is of interest, Pinterest makes it easy to click “Visit Site” or just “Visit” on the mobile app to be redirected to the original place the photo was used, which is likely a travel article, blog, website or company that can provide more details on the subject of the image that you pinned.
6. Have the Pinterest App on Your Tablet and/or Smartphone for Reference When Traveling. When you are traveling, and want to find that tapas bar in Alicante, Spain that you pinned, just find Wi-Fi and pull out your phone. The Pinterest mobile app makes it easy to review your pins even when you are exploring your destination, as long as you have data or Wi-Fi.
7. Upload Your Favorite Photos/Videos to Your Board When You Return From Your Travels. Adding your favorite images to your board will give you an easy place to look back on your trip. When friends ask for your recommendations from your trip, you can refer them to your Pinterest Board. Plus, you will provide valuable content for others who are planning their trip to the same destinations that you just visited.
Do you use Pinterest for travel planning? What tips do you have to add? Please share in comments below.