Social media has become a way for people to share their joys and triumphs with the people they care about worldwide. Graduating from high school, getting a law degree, marrying someone, and so many more of life’s highlights are celebrated on the internet.
Although some folks use online apps to make others jealous and try to frame their lives in a deceiving way, that is not the main drawback of social media obsession. You can also give too much information away to strangers, hackers, bosses, and others.
Home insurance and social media can be unlikely enemies if the policyholder doesn’t pay keen attention to detail. The same thing applies to auto insurance and life insurance policies.
We’ll cover some of the surprising ways you can sabotage your insurance policies on vacation, how you can avoid putting yourself in compromising positions with the people who surround you, and whether social media helps or hinders the vacation experience in the long run.
Social Media Exposes Your Location
Nobody should ever be able to tell where you are every single day of your life from your Instagram profile. Taking a picture of yourself and your spouse on your wedding day? Understandable. Going to Starbucks for a latte in the morning? No need to show that to the world. It’s just not that interesting.
Besides being completely self-indulgent, telegraphing your every move for the internet to see allows stalkers and potential burglars to memorize your schedule. The same thing applies to going on a vacation for weeks on end and putting your coordinates on the map out in the open for everyone to remember.
Insurance companies will be hesitant to give you a good quote following a home break-in if they see you perpetually announcing every time you go to the bathroom and walk your dog.
Insurance companies want to make money. In this quest to turn a profit, they have no desire to work with someone who makes it easy for criminals to gain entry into an insured property.
Make it easier for everyone involved by keeping some things between you and the people in your tangible reach. At least turn off your geotagging device if you still have to show off your entire life.
Consider What Social Media Reveals About You
Fearing for the fate of your home insurance is not the only item you should be worried about when going on vacation. Other little things you do and post can trigger your insurance agent’s paranoia.
If you are middle-aged or older and have life insurance, try not to repeatedly post pics of you smoking exotic cigars. Don’t bar-hop through Ireland if you said that you are sober. These red flags will put your insurance at risk of being dropped because you are making your health vulnerable.
Try to keep the photos as personally ambiguous as possible. Going the scenic route instead of the selfie one will eliminate the threat of spreading too much information about yourself. It also puts the focus on the vacation and the beauty of the world around you rather than the activities that you normally do at home.
Does social media ruin the experience?
We aren’t trying to scare you off from using social media entirely during your trip. But what you decide to post has consequences, and you should at least be aware of these potential threats every time you fire up a selfie for Instagram. Social media should always be used in moderation, just like any other form of technology.
You may also realize that social media detracts from the natural experience of vacationing. People used to be able to enjoy the tastes of Napa Valley without rubbing their friend’s virtual noses in the grapes. Showing off what is happening in foreign places takes you out of the present and shoves you back into the daily grind.
Forget about everyone back home and think of traveling as your personalized form of self-care. This doesn’t mean you have to skip taking pictures, but wait to share them with your pals until the journey has ended. This separates your everyday life from the break you are supposedly taking.
The benefits of a vacation are boundless. Staying in the moment instead of posting online will protect you from stalkers, hackers, bosses, and insurance agents who are eager to jack up your rates. Overall, social media is best left out when looking for the best experience out of town.
There Are Alternatives
Believe it or not, people weren’t able to use Facebook or Twitter a couple of decades ago when they hit the airport and exported to a new place. This doesn’t mean that old school travelers lacked the desire to capture the fleeting moments, though.
Think about going back to these times by taking pictures with an old Polaroid camera. This stylistic choice is a popular time machine simulator for the senses and gets you in touch with your relative’s habits.
If you’d like something a bit more modern, perhaps you can buy a special camera that is designed specifically for high-end photography. Take this piece of equipment with you only on special occasions and you’ll feel like an Oscar-winning director.
You might even discover that ignoring social media for a bit during your vacations will get you to appreciate your environment and the nature around you a lot more than you were doing before. Happiness comes from memories imprinted in the mind.
Enjoy Your Travels Without Worrying
Stay in the moment instead of attempting to maintain an image of the vacation. Your mind is the most powerful camera in the world. Staying present will create vivid memories that your iPhone is unable to capture, no matter how many pixels it can copy on your screen.
These options allow you to satisfy the urge to capture vacation tidbits overzealously without the home insurance agents or the house robbers seeing your comings and goings. This peace of mind adds to the fun of your trip and encourages you to take more in the future.
About the Author
Shawn Laib writes and researches for the insurance comparison site, USInsuranceAgents.com. He enjoys helping families determine the best ways to enjoy traveling without risking insurance issues once they return home.