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Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 18 December 2018

Holidaymakers spend four hours a day on their mobiles, survey says

Millennials’ addiction to social media and selfies make hotel bookings based around free WiFi

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Co-operation has warned residents and citizens not to post information or photos about their holidays while travelling to ensure criminals do not target their homes. Getty
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Co-operation has warned residents and citizens not to post information or photos about their holidays while travelling to ensure criminals do not target their homes. Getty

A picture-perfect moment is nothing without the ability to share on social media, according to a survey commissioned by Hotels.com.

One Poll surveyed 9,000 people across 30 countries and discovered that 44 per cent admitted to spending more than four hours a day on their mobile devices while traveling.

“With 50 per cent of travellers refusing to book a hotel that doesn’t offer free WiFi, there is a clear demand for travellers to be connected at all times,” said Daniel Craig, mobile vice president at Hotels.com.

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The rise in internet users worldwide has nearly doubled over the past decade, according to figures from data analytical site, Statistica. Social media penetration has increased 75 per cent over the past five years with 2.46 billion users.

“At Hotels.com we know that 51 per cent of people wouldn’t enjoy their holiday without their smartphone in their hand - how could they possibly capture the best selfie or show off to their friends at home without it,” Mr Craig said.

Source Smart Insights
Source Smart Insights

And while food garners the most in the travel bragging category, there is a pause for concern for relationships and connectivity.

Romance may be replaced by the virtual thrill as 20 per cent of the respondents admitted that they would prefer traveling with their smartphone rather than their partner.

This has spiralled to destinations tapping social media for further marketing and branding. Smart Insights revealed that social media significantly impacts travel plans with 52 per cent of Facebook users reporting that their inspiration comes from friends’ photos.

One in five travellers use social media for inspiration when researching ahead of holidays.

The lesson: more and more people are living life through their mobile devices. While connectivity may be increasing, real world connections are slowing.