06/27/09

Some people don’t know what twitter is or maybe they do but they don’t understand why anyone would want to post everything they are doing or read what everyone else is doing. Some people just don’t “get it”. I usually try to explain it to someone only to hear “why would anyone do that?” or “I don’t have time for that”.

Well, this post will show you why twitter rocks.

I’ve been looking to take a trip back to Hawaii with my bride since there have been some great deals on hotels and such down there with the down economy. The only thing there hasn’t been great deals on is airfare. From Atlanta, the tickets usually hover around $850 per person roundtrip. So that would be about $1,700 just in airfare! Ouch!

That’s where twitter came in…and boy did it pay off! Here’s how I snagged 2 roundtrip tickets to Hawaii for LESS than the cost of a single ticket!


First of all, I use a desktop app called Seesmic to track twitter and facebook status updates from people I follow. The cool thing about Seesmic is that you can creates “groups” of people that you want to track. So I have a group called “travel” as you can see below, which contains only the twitter users that post travel deals and updates. This allows me to see the best deals as soon as they are announced (deals almost always show up on twitter before any website has time to make a post about it). Trust me…twitter is the fastest way to find out about deals and jump on them!

seesmic_desktop

So one night I was about to go to bed, when I noticed a tweet from beatofhawaii (a twitter user who also has a great website about Hawaii) that said United Airlines was having a crazy sale for $250 roundtrip to Honolulu. Well, we had been planning to go to Kauai and Maui, but I figured I’d see if the deal worked for those…and it did! The price jumped to $376 a person since an extra flight was required (from Honolulu to Kauai and then from Maui to Honolulu), but I jumped on the deal and snagged 2 roundtrip tickets for a total of $752! That’s less than it normally costs for 1 ticket! So with taxes and fees I ended up saving right at $1,000! Within 24 hours the entire deal disappeared. If I hadn’t seen the post on twitter I would have completely missed the deal.

So…why do I use twitter? Well, for many reasons, but this is a big part of it! If you have an interest in just about anything then there are people “tweeting” about it on twitter. You don’t even have to be following them to see their posts…I use the search feature in Seesmic to search for a word and it automatically updates any time someone posts a tweet with that word included. For example, if I was interested in smoothie recipes, I could do a search for “smoothie recipe” and it would show me anyone tweeting about smoothie recipes…very nifty.

So getting back to how I setup a travel group, I actually follow a specific set of people…here are the twitter users I currently follow in my “travel” group…some of them are specific to Hawaii. If you’re looking for great travel deals (especially to Hawaii) then this is a great list of people to follow on twitter:

Conclusion
So basically, you can dive deep into just about anything that interests you using twitter (in this case, I was looking for the best deals for a trip to Hawaii). To do this, here’s what I suggest:

  1. Signup for twitter.
  2. Download Seesmic Desktop and set it up using your twitter account info
  3. Setup groups of people you want to follow or do a “search” for a keyword or phrase in Seesmic and leave that window pane open to see live updates as people post about what you’re looking for

It really is that simple.

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About Shane

Shane Eubanks
Internet Marketing Specialist
North Georgia

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