Throwback Thursday: Travel Before The Internet

Ever wondered how did people travel before the internet happened? I can’t even fathom how troublesome and frustrating booking hotels and flights must be. I mean how can you book without any reviews? How would you know if the place had terrible service, thin walls, dirty beds or not? Man, you people who lived before the Internet have my utmost respect.

  1. Booking flights was long process. It meant calling the airline/travel agent, waiting for them to check the availability and price since everything wasn’t fully-automated yet, and then either picking up your tickets at the counter or waiting for them to mail it
  2. There was no way to find out the cheapest alternative, everyone had to go through tour agencies/operators to book hotels
  3. You had to lug guidebooks around for information
  4. Keeping track of finances involved jotting down every single expense along the way
  5. Letters were the only form of communication with your family and friends back home
  6. Keeping in touch with fellow travellers wasn’t as easy as ‘friending’ them on Facebook
  7. Taking photos were way more expensive (film cameras) so you couldn’t take a hundred shots of the sunset in Italy, you had ONE CHANCE

I for one am grateful for the way the internet has changed travel. Mostly for the convenience and for having the cheapest flights at my fingertips. Having more responsibility over my trip and the ease of planning as I go is definitely another major perk. I can’t imagine heading to the airline office/tour operator every time my plans changes *shudders* what a hassle it must’ve been!

If I had to pick one con about travel after the internet it would be the lack of the element of surprise. In the past all you had was guidebooks, and if you’re travelling to a really off-the-beaten-path destination, there would be almost no information on it. But now, wherever you plan to go, even to the most obscure parts of the world, someone has definitely been there and information is widely available and free. I guess in some ways, travel was more adventurous in the past.


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