Every travel guru knows that it takes a hell of a lot more than just word of mouth and reading up on random google posts and the sometimes tedious travel books to plan and maintain a flawless travel plan, so I’ve listed my absolute go to’s for Travel related sites to help you become that amazing travel God/Goddess that everyone is so jealous about … you can click on the hyper links for more information
I tend to go straight to an Airline’s website to score the best deal… Normally. What I actually do is a bit of everything really.
I go to Kayak see what the meta search site finds along the lines of flights, and then go straight to the Actual Airline’s website to see their pricing. Meta Search Websites are great but with the rising costs for Airlines to pay on a commission to these search sites, the Airline companies got smart and are now offering the same pricing with added bonuses like seat selection, better mileage etc. Or if the price is way cheaper on the Meta Search Sites, then call the airlines and ask them to match it.
Delta I am a sky team member and love Delta so I tend to be on this site a lot.
SeatGuru Once I locate a good flight or flights, I immediately check the seating charts to locate the best plane possible. I’m pretty snobby when it comes the type of seat I have. Since I save all year round to travel and the one thing I do love to splurge on is a comfortable business flight, but there is nothing worse than thinking you booked an amazing first or business class flight only to find out you’re in an ancient plane, or chose the wrong seat which has no window or is close to the noisy galley and bathrooms.. Here’s where SeatGuru comes into play. It shows you the best seat and rows to sit in whether it be 1st or Economy and you can also look to see which flights are better to take from your home town or starting point.
Seat Maestro: A little similar to SeatGuru, Seat Maestro has the added benefit of reading reviews from Happy and some not so happy flyers who fly constantly for work and for fun and who knows the airports, airlines and planes inside and out. And is a great source of information if you’re interested, like I am, in obtaining the perfect flight experience.
TRIPIT This is an amazing app to have. I first used it after a free One Year offer ( now part of my CC plan for free) from my Barclay Arrival Plus World Elite Master Card What it does is, it is linked to your email so whenever you receive a confirmation from your Hotel, Flights, Car Rental, etc. It automatically pics it up and implements it into a full on trip itinerary. It is so sophisticated, it knows that Hotel A in Country B belongs to Flight C and puts it all into one itinerary. It also gives you a full on map to your hotel, what’s going on around the city you’re visiting, when to check in, what the weather will be like, how your flight is looking, best seat options, when seating is available, what gate to go to, and when things change. It is just amazing…. And Im so happy to have it as an added source to my itinerary scheduling including my Apple INotes.
Research and Hotel Decisions:
Trip Advisor I follow the bible of all travel blogs, Trip Advisor. I use it on my iPhone and iPad as an app, or I’m constantly on it on my computer. I love , live and breath through this site. After I’ve chosen a destination or even if I’m thinking about it, I come to this site for ALL my answers. I mean all. I can read up on reviews on destinations, locations, attractions, and hotels. I also participate in forums . The forums are a great place to understand things in more depth by asking questions or reading the posts of those who have experienced what you’re hoping to experience. It’s prevented me from many possible disastrous moments, helped me navigate a country on how I’m going to visit, helped me choose the best hotel for my specific accommodation style and location, helped me with planning a route for my self walking tours, and also helped with pretty much just about everything you could think of when traveling. It is a necessity for me.
Hotel meta searches: I use Kayak and Hotels.com to see what is out there along the lines of hotels. Then I go to Trip Advisor to see if the hotels I’m interested are 1. Any good 2. As good as they say , 3. in the location that is best suitable for my needs and 4. whether it ( the meta sights) are offering the best deal for what I’m looking for. Sometimes it’s best ( like shopping for airfare) to also go straight to the company’s website to see if they are offering better deals and amenities that the Meta Search sights aren’t offering.
AirBnB : My most favorite accommodation site to use, visit, and explore when I’m planning a trip. I love this site / app because I find the best places to live like a local. There is everything from Cheap couches to sleep on to fabulous 3 story penthouse condos in a city near you. I use this extensively when I’m traveling through Europe and in fact, I’ve just used it to book 75% of my accommodation while in Argentina, Chile, and Uruguay this coming May 2016. It’s completely user friendly and really works well with iPhones as you can upload your rental purchase straight to your Wallet
OTHER APPS AND SITES I USE :
Google translate : great help when you don’t understand a language
XE Currency Converter : I’m constantly checking this out before I travel and while i’m traveling. It gives me the best up to date exchange rates and determines ( most of the times) when to run to the ATM to withdraw my foreign currency at the best possible rates.
UBER : This trend is lovely to use while in the US and I will try to use this awesome car service while I’m in Argentina…
Viator : I use this site regularly when traveling solo. I use them to book tours of a place and it’s awesome.
Smarter Travel: This is a great site that keeps updating stories and tutorials on how to be an amazing traveler. I subscribe to their newsletter so I receive it daily in my inbox. Stories such as ” How not to be an obnoxious Traveler” to ” Best Airline loyalty Programs” fills your head with wonderful information on how to be a most informed and gracious traveler.
I hope you’ve been able to pick up on some of my favorite sites that I use constantly. I hope it helps you plan, and become the best traveler.