How Instagram and Your Smartphone Make Wandering the World Easier than EverPilar Clark
Scotland, England, Italy, Chile, Canada, the Caribbean, Hawaii, California, Florida — all of them and others color the stories that make up our collective family (his)story, and we’re just getting started.
That we’re wanderlusty travelhounds is no secret, and when we’re not traveling we’re either thinking about it or planning our next adventure, be it a solo trip or one we can revel in together. And while documenting each trip with photos was a fun thing to do pre-kids, it’s an absolute priority now that we have two little stowaways.
Capturing moments with the smartphone that’s basically become an extension of my arm is easy. Uploading them to Instagram means not only revisiting those places once we’re back home and playing armchair travelers again, but reminding our children of the sights, smells and sounds they experienced. Like a digital picture book.
Pop onto the photo- and video-sharing social networking site, and you’ll see there’s an entire tribe of nomadic travelers, who like us, are capturing the beauty of faraway places with their smartphones, sharing the most remote corners of the earth in a totally different light. No passport required per heart/like.
Thanks to the “explore” and “photo maps” features on Instagram, as well as videos, you can find users — professional photographers, casual snappers, visual artists and every other kind of phoneographer you can think of — in the most far-flung or close-to-home places, making planning that winter vacation a lot more interesting. Because the days of buying travel guides to plan a trip have pretty much gone of the way of the dodo, in favor of virtual exploration that allows for real-time discoveries; while social media networks bolster cool finds with crowd sourced question-and-answer posts.
If you have a specific destination in mind, start out by seeing if the tourism board for that area has an Instagram account. Then, start checking out hashtags. Everything from food to attractions to off-beat experiences can be found that way, and you may end up stumbling across something you hadn’t even thought to explore on your own.
Once you have it all booked, get everything organized with mobile printing. All you have to do is print your Instagram inspiration, boarding passes, maps, car and hotel reservations, and an itinerary with everyone’s must-sees/dos from your smartphone or tablet to a wireless HP printer, and a few minutes later, you’re ready for globetrotting, roadtripping, trainspotting — you get where I’m going with this.
HP even came up with a way to keep the wanderlust going (like it ever stops) with a program called Instant Ink. It’s basically a new ink subscription service that automatically anticipates low ink stores in your printer and delivers Original HP ink to your doorstep (at 50 percent savings) before you run out.
Now they just need to come up with a suitcase-packing service, because seriously.
Photo credits: Pilar Clark via Instagram