Several tourism destinations are using social media (SM) marketing more than traditional marketing in the developed countries. The increasing use of technology has replaced the role of travel intermediary. Most of the travellers in developed countries are no longer using travel agencies for their services. Many bookings are done online using electronic devices either at office or home. It is, therefore, a fact that SM has come to stay. However, the situation is contrary to some developing countries due to several reasons; for example, unreliable source of energy, communication, poor infrastructure and lack of competition. Most of developing countries depend on tourists from developed nations to consume their tourism destination products. Moreover, the modern travellers are no longer travelling in the dark. They want to have prior knowledge about their destinations. They check online product offerings, certification and destination labels. A modern tourist is becoming a more responsible traveller. SM plays a big role by providing information about many tourism destinations. Nevertheless, there are ongoing debates regarding the usefulness, future and survival of traditional travel agents despite the fact that there are threats from online travel agents and the increasing use of SM. This chapter is a case study of Malawi as a tourist destination. It critically discusses and analyses the impact of SM as a marketing tool. It also analyses the benefits and challenges of the travel agents, and finally confirms that there is a need to embrace technological change in travel and tourism industry in the developing nations.
Chilembwe, J.M. and Mweiwa, V.R. (2020), "The Future of Our Planet is Technology: Is it OK to Embrace the Change in Travel and Tourism Industry in the Developing World?", Hassan, A. and Sharma, A. (Ed.) The Emerald Handbook of ICT in Tourism and Hospitality, Emerald Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 489-507. https://doi.org/10.1108/978-1-83982-688-720201031
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