When getting away means staying in touch

Fri Aug 27, 2010 12:24pm EDT
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By Dorene Internicola

NEW YORK (Reuters Life!) - People used to go on holiday to unplug. Now they're demanding to be plugged in.

That secluded, desert island-type getaway may soon be as dated as the post-vacation slide show as more travelers use e-mails, Facebook and Twitter to nurture the ties that bind even while they get away from it all.

"For many travelers figuring out how to stay connected is as integral to the travel process as packing sun lotion and swimwear," said Amelie Hurst of travel website TripAdvisor.

"In times gone by this just wasn't an option. Traveling went hand in hand with being disconnected," she said.

Hurst said clients planning their trips routinely factor in the best means of staying in contact.

"Travelers ask the quality of cell phone service, international data plans. Staying connected can offer travelers a real comfort," she explained.

A recent survey of 2000 travelers by American Express found that 77 per cent of Americans intend to stay connected while on vacation via Internet, phone, social media and other channels.

The motivation is social, not business. Only 14 per cent said they would stay connected for work.   Continued...

<p>A passenger makes a phone call in front of the information board at Sofia airport, April 16, 2010. REUTERS/Stoyan Nenov</p>