Exploring the role of social media platforms in informing trip planning: Case of Yelp.com

Lama Bou Mjahed, Archak Mittal, Amr Elfar, Hani S. Mahmassani*, Ying Chen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

8 Scopus citations


Understanding how travelers make mobility decisions has always been central to transportation studies. The growing availability of information and communication technologies in everyday life and their role in conveying more recent, relevant, and customized information have substantially changed the context within which trip decisions are made. Whether travelers are actively seeking pretrip information or merely surfing the web, they have access through social media to user-generated information that may affect their mobility decisions. This study forms an exploratory step in understanding how one such social media platform, Yelp.com, designed to allow users to review and rate their experiences at any visited business, can serve as an information source for activity and trip planning in the pretrip process. In particular, the study explored (a) the relative depth, (b) the sentiment associated with, and (c) the type of information in transport-related reviews on Yelp.com. This research has implications for the study of travel behavior in a highly connected environment and can inform efforts to design information and communication technology tools aimed at affecting behavior.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationTravel Behavior and Values, Volume 3
Subtitle of host publicationEffects of Information and Communication Technology on Travel Choices
PublisherNational Research Council
Number of pages9
ISBN (Electronic)9780309441926
StatePublished - 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering


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