Favorite Websites and Tools For Travel

Here are just a few websites I use when I plan my vacation. I’m always studying and learning about the places, and I’m always looking for the best pricing and the best places to stay, the best flights, the best things to do. Here are most of the resources that I use and utilize. I will upload if I come across more. Several of these websites and apps may have more things in them than the brief category I put them in.

These will continue to be updated.

 

Flights:

TSA
This is an excellent tool. “Can I Bring _____?” It helps take the guessing out of things.

SeatGuru
This tells you what amenities are available on your flight. If your flight has an outlet. Granted, most of this information can be found on the airline’s website when you look at your reservation. But it’s a nice tool if you can’t remember your reservation number.

Adioso
This is a website I use to look for flights. It has a pretty cool option where you put in your departure airport, and there is an option for “anywhere”. You can also put dates, or a date range, or how many days/weeks/months you want to be gone for, and it comes up with flights.

Kayak
One of the things I really like about Kayak is it finds your prices. I worked at an airline, so sometime it is best to book through the actual airline website itself (unless you’re looking up some sort of packages–then you can get a pretty good deal.). This helps me find the flights that I want, and then I can book them with the actual airline.

  • Then again, I try not to book with Cheap O Air, Expedia, Orbitz– but that is mostly due to the customer service you can not get. But I do use them as a resource.
  • Places you can get great customer service with packages: Traterra, Funjet Vacations, Southwest Vacations, and United Vacations to add a few.

Hopper
One of my FAVORITE Apps. It helps me plan my flights, and it keeps track of where I’m going before I book, so I can see the ups and downs of booking flights. It’s saved me sooo much money!  Definitely a MUST DOWNLOAD!

Hitlist
My Second FAVORITE App. This one also helps me plan my flights. It keeps an eye out for me as well. Plus it has fun categories. You can find weekend trips, European Getaways, Hawaii Long Weekend, Southeast Asia Adventures. It’s simple. You pick places you want to go to, you have been to, you want to go again, and it gives you pricing and dates. It’s so nice if you’re looking at trying to find some good places to go. Definitely a MUST DOWNLOAD! (Also with this link, you can add me ;] )

 

Things to Do:

Atlas Obscura
I LOVEEEEE this site! It gives you an idea of things to do and things to see when you’re in town. Some of the things are super random and don’t cost anything. Others, may be not as popular museums, or restaurants, or a weird architecture. In Sydney, there’s an alley that has empty bird cages, but depending on what time of day, you hear different types of birds. It’s an art installment that mourns the lost birds of Sydney. (Forgotten Songs”)

Viator
This is a tool I have used in different ways. I have booked tours through this. I also use this as a resource. It shows me what’s around the cities that I’m going to. For example, I’ll choose to look at some sort of Walking Tour, I check out some of the places they are going to go past, and I decided to go look at those places myself, and look up more information about it, without having to pay for the tour. Or I wanted to see some castles when I was in Germany and France. I looked to see which ones appealed to me and which ones were closer, and I decided to go to those.

Capture
Toilet Finder [App]
Let’s just say, this has helped me out of sticky situations in Europe! This is definitely on my phone when I travel abroad. It also lets you know where there are Free bathrooms, and Accessible Bathrooms. (The Free, is the big one for me!) This definitely deserves the picture, due to there being several different apps with the same names.

Cool Cousin
This is an App I’m playing with, but so far, I’m loving it. This is an App (or website) where people have listed places that you should check out. I’m browsing one of Chicago (which is close to home). It has several people making listings of some of their favorite places. The options on this app show Food, Coffee, Nightlife, Culture, Shopping, Outdoors, Activities, and Other. They also have several people for one city, and have different places. I’m excited to get into this App.

  • It’s fairly new, so it doesn’t have too many places. But it has quite a few of interest such as: Chicago, New York, Berlin, Rome, Londa, Paris, Barcelona, Tel-Aviv, Rio, Istanbul, Denver, Dallas, Stockholm, Copenhagen, Amsterdam, Sydney, Melbourne, Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal, Prague, San Francisco, Sao Paulo, Budapest, Moscow, Madrid, Venice, LA (coming soon), Milan, Brighton UK, Lisbon, Jerusalem, Mexico City, Vienna, Dublin, Washington DC, Zurich, Athens, Bucharest, Cambridge UK, Portland OR.
  • But the cool thing, is you can also become a “Cousin” and add your places! Think of how many places we could get if we have all us travelers become Cousins.

Rough Guides
This cool site has made itineraries for things to do and to see when you’re traveling. It has quite a few locations all over the world. When to go, Where to Go, Things not to miss, it has quite the listings. Definitely worth checking out, when you’re trying to find a place to go and things to do and see.

Places to Stay:

Traterra
These are probably the coolest people you’ll ever get to talk to! The people who work at this company are really well traveled and really knowledgeable about the entire globe. If you’re going to book a vacation package, I would definitely suggest going through them. They are with you from planning to booking to preparing for your trip to days before departure to on your trip to after your trip. You can talk to them over the phone, you can talk to them via email, you can even talk to them via Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram!

AirBnB
I LOVE using this. Especially when I’m in Europe. Honestly, anywhere. I thoroughly enjoy having access to a kitchen. I have a hard time eating out every day, and spending money on food. So I love grocery shopping and being able to cook at least one to two meals by myself.

Homeaway
This is another site I use. It is similar to AirBnB. However, the cool thing with this one is you get another set of options (I always like to compare, and see what’s better; pricing, location, and options). The cool thing with this one is you can do a payment plan with them.

Couchsurfing
It is exactly what it sounds like. It’s a website similar to AirBnB, except sometimes, you just need a couch for a night. This site let’s you know who has a couch to offer. As well as it lets you list that you’re looking for a place, for how many nights, things that you’re looking to do. A lot of the times the hosts will be willing to travel and hang out with you and take you new places. For example, go hiking with you. You can find people who would “Meet Up” with you as well on the site. It’s definitely worth taking a look. Find a friend 😀

 

Saving Money:

Qapital
Yes, I actually use one of these apps. I can be really good at saving money, and then really bad at saving money as well. Sometimes I can’t see it. So that’s why I use this. It’s actually really sweet and I have found it super helpful! You choose how much you want to round up every time you make a purchase ( either credit card or debit card), it will move that amount to this app. I have mine round up to the nearest $5. So they move like 60 cents, $1, and so on. This is a must if you really want to save. And no worries, you can move it back into your account. Sometimes it takes 24-48 hours (unless it’s a holiday), so I would make sure you do the move on a Monday or a Tuesday, just to get some buffer space. Also, if your card or bank account go under a certain amount, they pause your transactions so you don’t end up over-drafting. I’ve added my link, so we both can earn $5 when you save $5! Who doesn’t love free money?!

 

Language:

Google Translate App
It stores several languages, so you can use them offline. It also can be said out loud if you’re not confident to try and pronounce some of the words.

DuoLingo
I believe this app helps you practice the language before you get to the foreign language country. Granted. I believe you need a good base of understanding in the language first. It is a good refresher for French. And I’ve attempted it with German–which I speak Zero, and it was much more advanced than I would have liked.

 

Food:

Yelp
This site gives you information about restaurants and the nightlife. This doesn’t have information for all the countries. But it does have a lot in the US, Europe, Canada, and Latin America, Australia, New Zealand, and a few others.

 

Getting Around:

Lyft and Uber
I’m pretty sure you’ve used this for those late night drinking sprees. I use this in Europe a lot. Especially in Germany where I’m not sure of the language. Or, when I’m in an area where I don’t see any transportation or taxis. I used it in Switzerland for sure. I wasn’t sure how to get back to the Train Station, so I booked an Uber. (A lot of the Taxi Drivers are also Uber/Lyft drivers there!)

Loco2
This site has train information within Europe. Train times, pricing, routes.

Rome2Rio
I LOVE this site. I’ve used this for Europe. It gives you a bit of information on how you can get places. For example, if you type in Dublin, Ireland to Edinburgh, Scotland. It gives you a couple ways to get there (flights, trains, ferries, car hires), with pricing, and some times. As well as activities, accommodations, car [rentals] hires. It’s fun to see different ways to get there.

 

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