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Digital Connection Essential for Many Vacationers

Digital Connection Important for VacationsRather than taking a vacation to get away from email, cell phones and computers, new research suggests having easy online access is now a prerequisite for many travelers.

Michigan State University researchers say the digital divide appears to have disappeared given the proliferation of personal information devices. And technology provides new ways to share memorable vacation events.

“Not that long ago, travelers would need to find a payphone or send postcards to brag about their vacations. Now they just log on and send photos and text,” said Christine Vogt, Ph.D., MSU professor of community agriculture, recreation and resource studies, and a co-authored of the study.

“Our results show clearly how the changing nature of IT behavior in everyday life is spilling over into our vacations.”

The study showed that people using smart phones have tripled. The study also revealed that wireless use was higher on vacation (40 percent) than at home (25 percent).

Also telling, were figures that show that people used the Web more to plan vacations (80 percent) than for work (70 percent).

“Travelers are using their laptops and phones more often, and not just to plan vacations,” Vogt said.

“Since Wi-Fi is available at most destinations, tourists are checking local weather forecasts, transportation schedules, restaurant recommendations, fishing reports, safe bicycling routes and much more.”

Some researchers say the use of computers, iPads and smartphones is addictive. It looks like the habit doesn’t take a vacation, either, says Vogt. Future research will give the tourism industry insight on the best ways to serve vacationers’ online needs.

“We hope to conduct more research across the various stages of vacations,” Vogt said. “This will help vacation service providers better understand what information travelers are looking for during trip planning and how it differs from the details they’re searching for after arrival.”

The study results will appear in the forthcoming issue of Annals of Tourism Research.

Source: Michigan State University

Digital Connection Essential for Many Vacationers

Rick Nauert PhD

Rick Nauert, PhDDr. Rick Nauert has over 25 years experience in clinical, administrative and academic healthcare. He is currently an associate professor for Rocky Mountain University of Health Professionals doctoral program in health promotion and wellness. Dr. Nauert began his career as a clinical physical therapist and served as a regional manager for a publicly traded multidisciplinary rehabilitation agency for 12 years. He has masters degrees in health-fitness management and healthcare administration and a doctoral degree from The University of Texas at Austin focused on health care informatics, health administration, health education and health policy. His research efforts included the area of telehealth with a specialty in disease management.

APA Reference
Nauert PhD, R. (2015). Digital Connection Essential for Many Vacationers. Psych Central. Retrieved on September 20, 2018, from https://psychcentral.com/news/2012/06/11/digital-connection-essential-for-many-vacationers/39959.html

 

Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 6 Oct 2015
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 6 Oct 2015
Published on PsychCentral.com. All rights reserved.