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Appy Holidays: reveals 95% of travelling Hongkongers spend up to two hours daily on social media

June 30, 2016 OTA News No Comments Email Email

On your summer vacation you’ll spend more time glued to your smartphone, showing off your latest adventures, than to your sunbed, according to the™ Mobile Travel Tracker*. This global study of 9,200 travellers across 31 countries, reveals that while away we Hongkongers turn into social media show offs, use mobile to search for the next attraction to visit and have Facebook Face-Offs with our travel companions, or with friends on the other side of the globe.


You’re not really getting a tan unless your friends know about it

With summer season just around the corner, you conjure up the image of spending hours relaxing around the pool, or exploring the sights and attractions of a new city. The reality however is that you will spend 59% more time glued to your smartphone than your sunbed. We spend on average 1.6 hours a day topping up our tan, compared to 2.5 hours a day glaring at our mobile devices. Shockingly, 11% of Hong Kong travellers will even spend more than five hours a day with their smartphone in their hands.

 Because ‘likes’ matter

We’re a bunch of social media show offs, as 42% of Hong Kong travellers admit to uploading photos to social media just to show off and 36% admit to checking into places on social media just to make friends jealous.

Hong Kong travellers typically spend two hours a day on social media channels though more than one-fifth spends over three hours a day on their social feeds. Even when we should be relaxing and enjoying ourselves on vacation, we still have a real case of FOMO (fear of missing out) – nearly half (46%) say they comment on friends’ posts just so they don’t miss out on anything out while they’re away.

And even if you thought you weren’t the competitive type, you may be one of the 9% of Hongkongers who engages in ‘Facebook-Face-Off’ with their travel companions. This is when you check your travel buddy’s social posts to make sure your content is better than theirs!

Exceptional willpower: mind over food

41% of Hongkongers admitted that their mobile device was their primary source of information while away. When it comes to the content we’re searching for, we’re more concerned about the next tourist attraction (67%) to visit than the next eatery to fill our stomach in (65%).  We also seem to enjoy being sober while abroad, as we’re four times as likely to search for a restaurant than to search for a bar while on a trip.

The most popular content we search for while away:

  1. Tourist Attractions – 67%
  2. Restaurants and food markets – 65%
  3. Maps and Directions – 59%
  4. Public Transport – 55%
  5. Translation via an app – 32%

Appy Holidays

40% of people only select a hotel if it offers free Wi-Fi, so being connected is important to today’s modern traveller. It seems when it comes to our app behaviour, we’re either posting on Facebook/ Instagram, getting lost in a destination or searching for the next attraction to go to and have the time of our life. The top five app categories we use while traveling are:

  1. Social Media (61%)
  2. Mapping (55%)
  3. Travel (55%)
  4. Public Transport (52%)
  5. Messaging (39%)

 Maps, keys and concierge – mobile does it all

The smartphone is the ultimate travel companion. It acts as your map, your room key, your concierge and even your translator. Travellers can practically live like locals thanks to mobile, as more than half of people (54%) use the map features on their smartphones to get around and 29% have used it to translate local words or phrases.

Travellers also seem to be embracing the latest in mobile technology developments, with 14% having checked into their hotel through their mobile device and 6% even used their smartphone as a room key. Rather than popping down to the lobby, a tech-savvy 15% of travellers have even used mobile to contact their hotel while in resort and 4% have tried out a mobile concierge service.

Snap-Happy Holidaymakers

You can’t visit the Eiffel Tower or Empire State Building these days without seeing a wave of selfie sticks, so it’s no surprise that 39% of Hong Kong travellers now take pictures of their destination on their smartphone, with almost a third (29%) also using it to take photos of their hotel room.

Jessica Chuang, Regional Marketing Director of Greater China and Emerging Southeast Asia and India for the brand said, “For travellers the mobile effect begins with booking, as 34% of people in our study prefer to book a hotel using a mobile app. It’s therefore no surprise that today’s modern tourist is so reliant on their smartphone, and as technology is advancing it’s becoming a more indispensable travel companion.”

“Our study shows that some travellers, especially millennials, spend more time looking at their screens than enjoying the sun or the sights. However, most Hong Kong travellers are actually using their device to search for local sights or attractions, food only comes second and information on public transit is third. Only 42% of people might have admitted to uploading photos to social media to make friends jealous but we all know you’ve definitely Instagrammed a holiday selfie to show off!”

The mobile app is available for iOS, Android and Amazon Kindle devices, and already has over 50 million downloads worldwide.

Please visit for more insights from the Mobile Travel Tracker.

Mobile developments at

  • Uber Integration – this month integrated Uber into its Android app. Available in 30 languages, it enables customers to book an Uber to take them directly to their hotel at the touch of a button.
  • In-Stay Mobile Features – is continually evolving its in-stay mobile experience and some exciting new features will be revealed in the coming months.

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