I used to use all tools at my disposal to do my travel research: books, internet, apps, social media and also simply asking people. However, I never gave them anything in return! So, I started to share my feedback with other travelers. Here is how I did it and how you can do it, too!
One of the best tools for travelers, in my opinion, to search for hotels, flights, tours and sightseeing, is definitely TripAdvisor. Be it the desktop version or the mobile one, it has never let me down. One of the reasons that make it an excellent resource for travelers is that it is full of updated feedback!
I used to read all the other travelers' opinions and that was it, thanks. Nowadays, I am also a contributor, I have a badge and everything! I share my feedback, pictures and also click on the like button if another traveler's feedback has helped me. I try to share what would be nice for the other visitor to know. "Beautiful", is not the feedback I need, "Beautiful place to relax and low budget cafeteria nearby but don't forget to bring a jacket because it can be a little chilly up there", this is helpful feedback! So, please, do share your feedback, I need to know if it's chilly so I can bring my purple jacket. :)
What about Youtube videos, huh? I'm sure you have already checked on "how to" something. Taking the subway in NYC, packing for Ryanair, ferry to Ireland, the list is huge!
Maybe now you're thinking: no, no, no, I'm too shy, I'm not going to do videos! But, here's the thing, if you simply click on the like button, you're already helping other travelers, because then we'll all know that it's a helpful video with good content just by the number of likes. And if you keep watching the videos from the same channel, what about subscribing to it? You'll be sending positive feedback to the vlogger and to her/his subscribers. That way everybody will try to keep doing a good job, it's a win-win situation. Maybe later, you'll decide to have your own travel channel on Youtube, sharing your own experieces, you never know...
In the world of selfies, sometimes there's just too much ego for such a breathtaking scenery. Try taking pictures from different angles. All kinds of pictures: landscapes, what's in front of you, behind you, between trees, the reflection on a pond, the possibilities are infinite. Even selfies nowadays, travelwise, are broadening the angles: eyes, arms and feet are just some of the selfies we've been seeing around.
Wanna help the traveler's community? Go after the secret spots! Find the photographer in you! Maybe it's Mickey's reflection on your sunglasses, the Statue of Liberty seen by a tourist cell phone, not to mention those beautiful sunrays going through a famous monument. All I am saying is: explore!
Ultimately, your traveling experience can lead you to what I am doing right now: blogging! If you are anything like me, before traveling you make a ton of research, which is also exciting, you check tripadvisor, you watch youtube videos, check some online pictures, read articles and posts. So, why not also write your own post afterwards? Well, this is what I'm doing, giving back to the community all the free and wonderful advice other travelers have shared and which have helped me prepare a more informative travel project.
Once I saw a phrase on the internet, sorry I don't know the author, which described the whole traveling feeling in one single short sentence, and this is the one I chose to end this post with: "Traveling makes you speechless, then turns you into a story teller". Do tell!