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Travel Tip: Plan Travel Through Photo Sharing

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maps_overviewThe latest social-media news is the new feature on Pinterest: Place Pins. Now, the site can be used for more than just posting pretty pictures. You can actually plot your trip on an interactive map so anyone can follow the same route. Or, you can build a map by theme: like East Coast beaches or street markets around the world…and, yes, they still come with pretty pictures.

Starwood Hotels and Resorts is now using Instagram on all of its websites. More than 1,500 property websites—including Westin and Sheraton—showcase photos and videos posted by guests themselves.

Plus, you can actually get some useful information from these photo sharing tools. HotelTonight, which lets you book hotels at the last minute, has a review feature called “Snap Your Stay.” These are real photos from actual guests, so you can make an informed decision based on their experiences.  When it comes to hotel reviews, it’s true that a picture—an undoctored one, anyway—is worth a thousand words.

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