A colossal 73 per cent of backpackers say they favour word-of-mouth advice for the best travel recommendations, compared to an out-voted 14 per cent who believe social media is the answer to backpackers’ dreams. 

Blogging, whose influence has rocketed in recent years, also failed to make a significant impression on the results, languishing at just 13 per cent.

The trend is underlined by the finding that a massive 85 per cent of Blackberry believers, and 68 per cent of iPhone aficionados, would simply leave their handsets at home. Fave gadget, instead, is unquestionably the camera, with a whopping 90 per cent of readers snap-happy on their travels.

Conducting one of the most extensive surveys of its kind, the TNT Travel Show (tnttravelshow.com) carried out the poll ahead of its monster March 3 free expo at London’s Earls Court. The results of the survey, involving over 1,000 18-35 year-olds, give a valuable glimpse into the youth travel market.

Email comes out tops in the battle for ‘best tech for keeping in touch with friends and family’ while abroad, scooping 29 per cent of the vote and defeating billionaire-making Facebook (22 per cent) into a distant second place. The also-rans were SMS (16 per cent), Skype (15 per cent), mobile phone (12 per cent), landlines (3 per cent), and Twitter and snail mail (each 1 per cent).

Kevin Ellis, CEO of the TNT Travel Show, said: “These findings give us a fantastic glimpse into the minds and lives of young travellers.

“Our survey shows that even if the good old-fashioned holiday postcard is disappearing into youth tourism’s sunset, nevertheless our audience loves human contact. They believe it’s simply not smart to spend your travel time gazing at a smartphone, and when it comes to taking advice, they’re clearly saying we’re “only human” thanks!”

More than  10,000 visitors are expected through the doors at Earls Court on 3 March, with exclusive travel deals, travel seminars and a travel tweet-up just a few of the highlights at the one-day event which is London’s biggest free travel show. Free entry can be secured by registering at tnttravelshow.com.