Social media-centric apps and devices provide new travel tools

These days there are apps to help youth become experts on everything from shopping ethically to trading in the stock market. Young people also desire to be experts on travel, as Ys strive to be cultural diplomats and Zs grow up as global citizens. New offerings are providing tools for these young travelers, leveraging their propensity for social media to help them make the most of their journeys.


The Sherpa app curates travel recommendations by collecting photos from Instagram micro-influencers to appeal to travelers of all types who want guided inspiration from real people. Zs are much more likely to buy a product if an influencer endorses it than if a celebrity does (61% vs. 39%), and brands are increasingly utilizing influencers and experts of all levels to reach their younger consumers. Sherpa currently displays more than 500,000 geotagged photos from 2,000 travel photographers. The photos and guides can be saved to a user’s profile to build a custom trip plan.


Although 34% of Ys have taken a solo vacation and 37% are interested in doing so in the future, they’re still looking for ways to connect with others during their travels. Instead of relying on the luck of finding compatible strangers IRL, the Jetzy app provides a Tinder-like interface for users to swipe through profiles of fellow travelers and local residents who are interested in meeting up. Users list their travel interests so they can connect with others who want to partake in the same activities, such as explore museums or try the local grub.


Approximately two thirds of Trendsetters (63% in the U.S. and 70% in the UK) have shared a photo or video on social media of a place they’ve traveled. The Instasnap camera makes this even easier because travelers don’t need to carry their smartphone or digital camera to capture and upload images of their trip. The small device is waterproof up to 10 meters, and the photos and videos captured can be uploaded directly to a user’s Instagram account with Bluetooth or Wifi connectivity.