Guest Author - Christine Wilcox
For several years now, I've become a collector of emails from various traveler organizations. Some are review sites, some are what could best be called agencies, others are airlines and hotel chains while some just aggregate deals and tell me when they've found a fare that's worth noting.
Do they all let me know about deals in a timely fashion (if that's their purpose)? Yes. And that's usually where it stops for me.
Honestly, in all my years of solo travel, I can think of 3 times that I jumped at a deal I got via email. If I'm looking for a specific vacation, I'm on Kayak.com.
When I want to travel on a whim, I go to the place that currently has the most whimsy: Twitter.
If you don't have a Twitter account out of fear that you'll be inundated with the drudge of "OMG I'm wearing 1 blu sock & 1 blck sock - #Ineedhelp" tweets, fear not - you have a choice who you follow and depending on how you set up your account, who will follow you. It's simple to set up an account and it's even easier to start getting tweets for travel deals.
If you don't know where to start with Twitter before or after you've set up your account, you can start here: SoloTravelTips from BellaOnline.com on Twitter. Now, what you're going to do next is look to the right hand side of the screen where it says "Following." Click there to begin exploring the world of Traveling Twitter Accounts (and a few others, thrown in for balance).
My FAVORITE Twitter accounts for Traveling, in no particular order.
1. KAYAK. I've extolled the virtues of using KAYAK.com before - follow them on Twitter for instant deals!
2. State Department Travel website - just chock full of good information for travelers.
3. TrazzlerTrazzler finds deals around the globe and publishes them.
4. Air Fare Watchdog - if you're looking for cheap flights, you owe it to yourself to follow them.
5. AAA Travel The official site of the largest leisure travel agency in the US. I like AAA Travel because it's not a one-trick pony. They have great info, and a really cool travel app for Androids to find the cheapest gas prices.
And don't forget to follow your favorite airline! @SouthwestAir, @JetBlueCheeps and @UnitedAirlines, just to name a few. Go search for them. If they're not out there, there will certainly be other travelers talking about them.