I admit it. When I was living at home, I didn’t “get” foursquare. If twitter felt like it had very little value, foursquare felt like it had none. Why on earth would I want to “check in” somewhere that I went every workday? What’s the point there? While I still don’t think Foursquare has a lot of value to me as a local, as a traveller and travel blogger, I have to say that I have seen the light.
Foursquare is probably my most used platform. I instagram, I tweet but I really check in. I check in a lot. Mostly so I can share and document my experience, but also so I can see what others are saying about a place. When I arrive at a new location, I’ll browse foursquare lists and sometimes spend a day just knocking down some random guys foursquare “must do” list. Usually they are obvious places but sometimes you hit a real gem that would never have come to mind. Usually food lists are really great. They are usually lists created by locals. Look for lists like “great places near me” or something similar and you’ll be sure to hit on something fun.
I also use it as documentation. I’m a huge fan of ifttt and every checking creates a post on my blog which contains the date I checked in as well as a photo and map of the place. I’ll use this as a starting point for other posts if I’m going to create a blog post about the venue for a guide or something similar. Lastly, every hostel or hotel category I check into creates a special post which updates my newsletter, telling people where I am automatically.
Foursquare doesn’t have a lot of use for me as a local back home in toronto. It really doesn’t. But as a traveller, I have found it super useful and a great way to initiate a little adventure that you would otherwise not have taken. Try it out next time you are in a new town and have a few days to fumble around and try some random wanderings. I think you might just enjoy it as much as I have.