Ugh! Who knew traveling could be so stressful! I, like many Canadians, love to travel. However, planning a vacation these days is enough to make one wonder if the trip is actually worth it. This is why for my upcoming bon voyage, I have taken a digitized path towards planning my vacation by using travel apps. This has helped to keep me organized, and my plans straightforward and cost effective. Utilizing some fantastic apps I was able to book flights and hotels, find interesting places to see, and keep my expenditures and itinerary on track. Breaking down trip planning into three simple steps and utilizing specific apps, trip planning can now be done quickly and easily.
By the way, it is best that you begin this process at least 10-12 weeks in advance in order to have enough time to prepare, plan and inform work, friends and family that you are leaving.
(OH- PS, Urban Barn, I going to be gone for awhile! Cheerio!)
Step One: Choosing and Booking
- Booking Flights: For this tedious task, I suggest Wanderlust. This is a meta-booking app which consolidates all flights from all airlines to and from your location & destination, including stop-over flights for a reduced rate. Wanderlust is available for Apple and Android smart phones.
- Choosing Hotels: There are a bevy of hotel booking apps and websites. My biggest tip is to read peoples experiences. While everyone has a different experience, big things (like being next to a noisy train station) will often be mentioned a few times. These little things can make or break your travel experience. I have found the Expedia app very useful for this task.
Step Two: Planning
- Planning: I have to admit a slight bias here. Being a fan of the Lonely Planet travel guides, I was ecstatic to see they have released a FREE Lonely Planet app in which I was able to find places to see and where to eat (all while on a shoestring budget). If you are a fan of city traveling, the TripAdvisor app is necessary. Having the ability to work while not connected to wifi or data, TripAdvisor has fantastic guides to all major cities across the globe.
Step Three: Organizing
- Organizing: This is often my downfall. I always tend for forget something. This is why I sought out two fantastic travel organization apps, TripIt and TripCase. I utilized TripCase to organize my hotel bookings, keep track of my expenses, and provide a day by day itinerary to structure my trip by. It also allows you to share your trip plans with family and friends, as well as flight and personal info just in case something goes wrong. TripIt was fantastic for creating travel routes which would save me the most time, as well as keep track of gas milage.
By utilizing these tips and travel apps, I hope you too can have a fun and well planned vacation. Happy Travels!