Go-Lo.net, a new travel social network that breaks down the traditional barriers that have stood between travelers and travel journalists, publicists, agents, vendors, and anyone else with good, actionable info, was launched today.
David Paul Appell, president and co-founder of EnLinea, LLC, a Miami-based developer of innovative social networks, a longtime travel journalist, and former magazine editor, explained: “Go-Lo offers travelers who are overwhelmed by information from too many travel sites a chance to ‘hang out’ online with industry insiders, asking questions and getting tips that will help them travel better ̶ and save a buck. Meanwhile, the insiders get a chance to put their fingers on the pulse of what the traveling public wants and pick up a few tips of their own. Everybody wins.” Co-founder and travel writer José Balido added with a smile: “I myself just stayed at an amazing property in Tampa this past weekend for under a hundred bucks, thanks to a Go-Lo member expert. It might have taken me hours to find it on my own.”
With a user-friendly, Facebook-style interface, Go-Lo combines fun content ̶ destination spotlights, user-generated photo and video galleries, travel news feeds, an events calendar, weekly polls, world music videos with commentary, and a far-ranging weekly travel blog ̶ with an eclectic and ever-expanding network of members from around the world, so far including Argentina, Aruba, Australia, the Bahamas, Brazil, Canada, Costa Rica, the Czech Republic, Dubai, France, India, Israel, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, the Philippines, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Turkey, the United Kingdom, and the United States. They’re all travel enthusiasts, but many are also travel journalists, travel agents, tour operators, hoteliers, and marketers.
Members participate in more than 230 groups dedicated to all 50 US states and hundreds of countries around the world, as well as travel topics including eco/sustainable tourism, family travel, honeymoons/weddings, gay/lesbian, movies and travel, travel with pets, wine, foreign-language clubs, history/archaeology, singles travel, and much more. Most of these groups even list specific members qualified to advise on that destination or topic. What could be cooler than getting up-to-date info from an Auckland journalist about your upcoming trip to New Zealand, a couple of tips from a fellow traveler, and a rundown of fare options from a Kiwi-specialist travel agent, all in one place? And you might even make a friend or two along the way!
Go-Lo.net also has dedicated groups for travel media, travel agents, tour operators, and travel publicists, and a random sampling of other members includes representatives from Colombia Tourism, Finnair, German National Tourist Office, Kimpton, Lufthansa, Mandarin Oriental, Minnesota Tourism, Mississippi Tourism, NYC & Company, Portugal Tourism, Ritz-Carlton, SAS, South Carolina Tourism, Visit Britain, and Visit Florida, among others. All are ready and willing to help fellow members upon request.
Said Appell, “In an age when both travel and the print media are facing enormous pressures, we hope to create new outreach opportunities for both ̶ and help people keep exploring their world.”