GROUP CHAT: It’s meant to be a relaxing time away to connect with friends, but a new report has shed light on the number of text messages it takes to plan a simple weekend getaway.
Researchers from the University of Melbourne interviewed people from 100 different friend groups who have attempted to plan a weekend trip within Australia in the past two years.
“It took the average group 2,509 text messages to agree on a broad travel plan, and then implement it,” says lead researcher Ethan Sterling.
“First, there’s a flurry of passionate discussion about a holiday location, as well as transport and accomodation options.”
“Then, away from the main chat group, there are also hundreds of private messages about who should share a room with who.”
The report also noted a spike in text message activity shortly before the trip is due to begin, as participants pull out at the last moment.
“Many blame health issues for the late withdrawal, but our research shows most of them never really wanted to go in the first place.”
The study also found 71% of planned trips were cancelled completely.
“Covid as well as recent floods have skewed the data significantly,” says Ethan Sterling. “But even before the pandemic, the average rate of trip cancellation was well over 50%.”
Researchers say their report confirms the long-held view that it’s not worth all the effort to go away on the weekend with friends.
“We recommend people save themselves hours of text messaging by going away alone, or even better, just stay home and watch TV and surf the internet.”