People stay connected even when on holiday

People wish to stay in contact with their friends and families even when they are thousands of miles away on holiday. This is according to new findings to be published in the journal Annals of Tourism Research, which showed individuals stay up-to-date with social goings-on despite vacations traditionally being perceived as an opportunity to relax and escape normal life.

Investigators from Michigan State University (MSU) discovered tourists now check their phones, tablets and laptops as much as they apply sunscreen, resulting in the digital divide no longer being a factor when people head overseas.

Christine Vogt, Professor of Community Agriculture, Recreation and Resource Studies at MSU, noted: "Not that long ago, travellers would need to find a payphone or send postcards to brag about their vacations. Now they just log on and send photos and text."

Professor Vogt observed the study highlights just how much information technology is influencing everyday behaviour.

She explained individuals are also using their devices for a number of other purposes, such as checking local weather forecasts, restaurant recommendations and transport schedules.

Professor Gail Kinman, CPsychol, commented: "The findings of this research highlight the increasing use of electronic communication devices to maintain regular contact with friends and family and a continued presence on social networking sites, as well as obtaining local information.

"Nonetheless, it is important to make sure that you spend enough quality time with the people you are actually on holiday with without too many distractions.

"Moreover, checking work emails on a regular basis is likely to interfere with relaxation and recovery from the stressors and strains of working life, which many people go on holiday to escape."