Infographics are great, and even better when they mix planes and travel together.

As a lead in to the main event below, this graph from Amadeus’ provides an insight into the use of social media for travel related purposes by country. Unsurprisingly, China is on top with a 92% involvement. An increasing number of mainland Chinese are travelling abroad, and the majority of internet users, more than half a billion, use a blog or Weibo.

Social media use for travel related purposes by country. Source: 2010 JD Power’s ‘Global Airline Traveller Survey’ commissioned by Amadeus

Today’s China interacts via social media using the general population to deliver suggestions and advice people wouldn’t trust large companies or the government to provide. Chinese travel companies that harness this, such as DaoDao (到到), whose tagline “get the truth, then go” leverages this divide, are reaping the benefits as people gain trust in their services.

Amadeus missed Australia. Perhaps we don’t travel enough or we aren’t connected? Given Tourism Australia research into the influence of social media on our travel, and the emphasis Australia’s airlines place on mobile self services and connectivity through social media, one would assume we’re likely located somewhere between the UK and Canada.

Comparatively in the United States only 59% of respondents used social media for travel related purposes. This is what makes the infographic by MDG Advertising below intriguing. Why does travel connectivity in the home of social media rank in comparison to, or below developing countries?

While slightly America-centric, the infographic provides a thoughtful insight into how connectivity is influencing our travel behaviour. Specific airline data remains commercial in confidence, but several key figures demonstrate the increasing inter-reliance of personal connectivity for airline travel:

  • 26% of people checked airfare prices, and 18% of people booked flights using mobile devices;
  • 50% of travellers now use a mobile device to check flight status, up from 30% in 2011;
  • 30% of travellers use a mobile device to check-in for their flight, up from 17% in 2011.

How connected are you when you travel?

Vacationing The Social Media Way [infographic by MDG Advertising]