Wednesday, September 23, 2009
One of the best parts about traveling—or living overseas—is sharing your experiences with friends and family around the globe. Whether it’s telling a funny story, offering tips on where to eat, or showing off a new favorite photo, recounting your travels is half the fun. Fortunately for you there’s Where I’ve Been, the ultimate social networking site for travelers. I stumbled upon the website just the other day, while researching hotels for an upcoming story. Had I been one of the millions of Americans using Facebook however, I probably would’ve heard about it sooner. After all, Where I’ve Been has consistently clocked in as Facebook’s most popular travel application since its creation in 2007. Now with nine million users and counting, the wildly popular application has morphed into a wildly popular online community—and after a few simple clicks I’ve quickly figured out why. Take its maps for example, which are clearly the site’s coolest feature. Once you sign up (free and painless, by the way) you can create one of Where I’ve Been’s interactive maps, basically a personalized color-coded atlas that lists where you’ve been, where you’ve lived, and where you’d like to visit—a mixed bag of worldly optimism and bragging rights. Even better are its user-generated profiles with photos, video, and honest-to-goodness reviews of popular cities, hotels, and attractions worldwide. You can even pose questions to other users. For example, if Jane Q. Traveler stayed at the hotel you just booked, you can find out just how comfy those beds really are by sending her a direct message. How about that? Finally for last-minute deals and worldwide news, be sure to sign up for Where I've Been's Twitter feed, useful travel bits 140 characters at a time. So what are you waiting for? Go check it out. Because your trip doesn’t have to end once you get off the plane.