If you’re a traveler who’s not using Twitter, you need to change that.
I know, I know. You already have too many information streams dumping data at you — recipes on Pinterest, baby pictures on Facebook, spam in your email, the ads on TV and radio, the entire internet vying for your attention.
Me too. And then there’s the cellphone.
So why should every traveler be on Twitter? Because it can help you travel better. Whether you’re a business road warrior or a once-a-year leisure traveler, Twitter is a great tool. Its mobile-perfect format fits travel advice into your pocket. The constant stream of changing content can help while away long delays. The quick-hit platform means you can check in on world events without surfing all over the Web — vital when you’re in roaming territory or paying for Wi-Fi by the minute overseas.
But mostly, it’s because Twitter really can help. Most major airlines have customer service Twitter accounts that get rave reviews — Tweet them and get help, usually faster than calling. Need road condition information during a snowstorm in Wyoming? Follow the State Patrol there. Want a pub recommendation? Just ask the Twitterverse.
To get the most out of Twitter, you’ll need to explore a bit, joining conversations that interest you and following the people who make your day.
But here’s a starter list of a few helpful, inspiring or entertaining Twitter travelers that I enjoy or find informative — check them out:
@airfarewatchdog: Twitter face of the website with the same name. It’s unbeatable for bargain fare alerts.
@cjmcginnis: Chris McGinnis, a travel consultant associated with www.travelskills.com
@flygirl737700: A pilot with an opinion. She actively retweets useful (and funny) stuff from other travel tweeters.
@jaunted: From Conde Nast’s hipper younger website, Jaunted.com.CQ This is a flood of interesting, approachable-but-not-obvious things to see and do all over the place.
@NYCAviation: Contrary to the name, this one has a focus on airline and airport info far beyond New York City. It was among the few to get it right about Boston’s airport NOT being closed during the hunt for the marathon bombers.
@friendlystew: This is a spot-on handle. He’s a member of the cabin crew who’s just conversational, nice and — yes — friendly to travelers all over Twitter.
Check out who I follow (you can see on my Twitter page, @lisasschwarz) for lots more. Have a great one I missed? Send it in and I’ll spread the word.Get travel news daily at www.sctimes.com/travel, on Twitter @lisasschwarz, and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/sctimeslisa. Send questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.