I recently stumbled across a newly formed website called ‘Where I’ve Been,’ and was surprised to find that a lot of my friends were already on it! The site was just created in 2010 and already has 9.7 million members! If you’ve never heard of it, it’s simply a great way to record and share your travels with others. And when I say simply, I do mean that it is extremely simple to use. ‘Where I’ve Been’ automatically connects you with your Facebook account, making it easy to locate your friends and fill in your personal and travel information. The whole site is awesome (and FREE), but here are the some of the features that I found especially worthwhile!
Create a Map
- This is one of my favorite features, mostly because it is both visual and interactive. Everything is color coded and can also be made ‘city-specific’ rather than just ‘country-specific.’ Here on your own personal map, you are able to do three different actions:
- After you’ve completed your map, ‘Where I’ve Been’ then generates percentages showing you how much of the world you’ve already traveled to and also how much of the world you one day hope to see. You can also compare your own map to your friends’ maps, it’s interesting and sometimes surprising to see where others have been!
- Don’t worry, you aren’t asked to enter your real passport information! Your ‘passport’ includes your name, current location, hometown, local airport, local currency, languages you speak/wish to learn, travel interests, etc. Your ‘passport’ is basically your profile, allowing others to learn a little more about you and connect with you based on interests.
- ‘Where I’ve Been’ includes a section specifically for ‘Travel Talk’ where members can have conversations with each other. These conversations could be based on interests or geographic location, but mostly members use these forums to ask travel-specific questions and build off each others’ responses. It’s no surprise that Abroad101 knows/appreciates the value of peer advice and LOVES the idea of using that insight to help out one another!
- Categorized by continents, these guides link you to information and advice from other members on the site. Everything is well organized and easily accessible, and all in one place!
- If you have pictures from your trip (which I’m SURE you do!), ‘Where I’ve Been’ allows you to create virtual scrapbooks to organize them. You can include a picture, a location on a map, and a detailed caption to tell others and remind yourself about the scene. These scrapbooks can be made available for everyone to see so you can visually share your experience with your friends and other travelers!
- Every day there is a new trivia question testing your travel knowledge. These questions range from random fun facts to interesting cultural queries. What do you get for answering these questions, you ask? That leads me to the next feature!
- For every trivia question that you answer correctly, you are awarded 20 travel bucks (if incorrect, you are still given 1 travel buck for trying!). You can also gain travel bucks by interacting with different parts of the website. Now, although these travel bucks aren’t real money, you can still use them to do some good! The more you earn, the more you can do! Here are some options for your contributions:
- Save 1 square foot of rainforest
- Clean water for Mozambique
- Feed a child in Mali
- Adopt a manatee
- Education for a child in India
- Plant a tree
- Education for a child in Darfur
- Health care for females in Afghanistan
All in all, ‘Where I’ve Been‘ is a unique, interactive, and informative website that has had and will continue to have a positive effect on the traveler community and help others to gain global perspective through each other 🙂