18+ Statistics on How Social Media Affects Travel [2024]

Statistics on how social media affects travel
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Welcome to our curated and vetted 2024 list of 18+ statistics on how social media affects travel.

Here’s a quick breakdown of what we’ll cover:

Top Social Media vs. Travel Statistics

  • A significant 78% of Americans admit that social media influencers prompted them to explore new destinations, restaurants, or attractions.
  • Globally, 35% of consumers turn to social media for travel inspiration.
Globally, 35% of consumers turn to social media for travel inspiration
  • About 38% of Gen Zers and 28% of Millennials claim social media made them overspend on travel after seeing other users’ vacations.
  • Nearly half (48%) of travelers visit places to flaunt them on social media.

Consumption Patterns and Preferences in Travel Content on Social Media

01. A majority of Americans choose Instagram (37%) as their top social platform for their travel needs.

What’s Your Preferred Social Media Platform for Travel?In %
Instagram37
YouTube26
Facebook23

02. Activities and attractions (19%) is the type of travel information Americans typically search for on social media.

What Travel Information Do You Typically Seek on Social Media?In %
Activities and attractions19.13
Transportation17.62
Restaurants and dining17.08
Reviews and recommendations from fellow travelers16.39
Destination inspiration15.57
Lodging8.2

03. The primary reason why social media users engage with travel content is for entertainment and vicarious experiences (42%).

Reasons to Consume Travel Content on Social Media (in %)AverageWomenMen
Entertainment and vicarious travel41.5040.6642.33
Cultural insights and understanding21.4519.2323.66
Practical advice (e.g., where to stay, what to do)19.9121.1518.67
Inspiration14.6617.3112.01

04. A full 89% of Americans go on social media while on vacation.

05. People on vacation usually dedicate 1–2 hours to social media every day.

How Much Time Do You Spend Daily on Social Media When on Vacation?In %
1–2 hours31
30–60 minutes24
2–3 hours20
Less than 30 minutes14
3–4 hours6
4–5 hours3
6 hours or more2

06. A majority of Americans (58%) lament their latest vacation was marred by excessive social media usage.

Sources: ePassportPhoto, Passport Photo Online #1, Passport Photo Online #2

Influence and Trust in Travel Influencers

07. A significant 78% of Americans admit that social media influencers prompted them to explore new destinations, restaurants, or attractions.

08. Most people (45%) have only moderate trust in content creators on social media.

Social Media Users’ Trust Levels in Travel Influencers (in %)AverageGen ZersMillennialsGen XersBaby Boomers
Trust to some extent45.4964.7754.835.6135.61
Neutral / Neither trust nor distrust23.5816.489.962542.86
Complete trust20.1918.1830.44257.14
Limited trust7.550.573.699.8516.07
No trust at all301.114.557.14

09. Roughly 59% of social media users have felt duped by a blogger’s travel advice at least once.

10. Information accuracy (25%) is Americans’ primary concern when considering travel recommendations from influencers on social media.

What’s Your Top Concern about Influencer Travel Recommendations?In %
Accuracy of information24.94
Financial misrepresentation of costs18.32
Lack of authenticity or filtered reality13.13
Bias from sponsored content12.91
Potential for a standardized or cookie-cutter experience12.69
Omission of travel challenges or logistical details11.92

Sources: Passport Photo Online

Impact of Social Media on Travel Decisions and Experiences

11. Globally, 35% of consumers turn to social media for travel inspiration. For Gen Zers, this number jumps to 53%.

12. More people find travel inspiration from social media (35%) than from travel agents (29%), newspapers/magazines (26%), and TV shows/movies (25%).

13. Social media (75%) has the greatest influence on travel destination choices, ahead of TV/news/movies (64%) and family and friends (47%).

Share of Respondents Influenced to Travel to a Destination by ChannelIn %
Social media75
TV, news, or movie64
Family and friends47

14. The “travel” hashtag on TikTok has amassed over 27.2M posts and 223.1B views.

15. Six in 10 TikTok users have grown interested in visiting new places (e.g., parks, beaches, cities) after watching a video about them.

16. About 32% of people have booked stays at hotels or resorts they saw on TikTok.

Travel Decisions and Activities?In %
Booked a stay at a new resort or hotel32
Visited an attraction (e.g., waterpark, amusement park, aquarium)28
Traveled to a new city18
Traveled to a new beach18
Visited a new state park, lake, or nature reserve15
Attended a festival or state fair12

17. About 38% of Gen Zers and 28% of Millennials claim social media made them overspend on travel after seeing other users’ vacations.

18. Nearly half (48%) of travelers visit places to flaunt them on social media.

Sources: Credit Karma, Expedia, MGH, Statista, TikTok Hashtags

Stacking It All Up

That concludes our deep dive into how social media affects travel.

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