The rise of the Tweetup

Tweetups are a great way to meet fellow travellers

Definition of a Tweetup: A tweetup is when a group of people who have spoken via Twitter or social networking sites meet in person. It isn't as creepy as it sounds, we promise!

If the words 'tweetup' or 'internet-meetup' make you cringe and conjure images of geeky teenagers gossiping about World of Warcraft then you wouldn't be alone.

It's true that there was once something nerdy about meeting friends on the internet through chat rooms, forums and twitter and it would be even nerdier (that's a word, right?) to meet them in 'real-life'. But times are changing and these once geeky encounters are starting to become the norm.

We're seeing more and more people using the gapyear.com message boards to find travel mates and meet up with them before they leave or while they're away.

It can be scary arriving in a new country where you don't know anyone so arranging to meet people before hand is a great way to ease those pre-travel nerves and make sure you've got a travel buddy once you arrive. Even if you don't travel together, it can be nice to meet in person and swap travel stories, tips and advice.

Tweetups within the travel industry are also on the rise and we attended #Travtweetup last night, organised by our friends RTW Experts and G Adventures. This was a chance for travel writers, journalists and bloggers to get together and share their experiences.

If you're on Twitter, you can take a look at the #Travtweetup hashtag stream to see all the news and photos from the night. Hashtags are used to categorise tweets and makes it easier to search for topics on Twitter.

There were great giveaways including and 8 day trip from LA to San Francisco with G Adventures, £750 towards flights from Round the World Experts and everyone who attended received a £100 gift voucher for Round the World Experts. Not bad for an evening of meeting new people, networking and chatting about what we all love the most; travel.

If you're planning a gap year and you want to find people to travel with or you just want to meet up with like-minded travel obsessives to chat about your plans then get on the message boards and say hello.

Have any of you met travel buddies through the internet? If you have, we'd love to hear your stories.