Though you might not want to copy other people’s photos, you can leverage Instagram collections like Matt and start compiling your own images from places you’d like to go. For information on how to exactly do that, check out Instagram’s page on it here.  
“[My wife and I] were in Switzerland a couple of years ago and we stayed at a hostel in a private room,” recalls Naveen. “There are no budget hotels in a place like Switzerland. It’s either a hostel or ultra-glamorous hotel. The hostel we stayed at was still very comfortable and affordable for us though.”
Okay, you’re inspired, prepared, and on your way to saving money for your trip. But before you go buy that flight or book that hotel, check for deals you might have missed. You may dream of Paris but maybe there are great deals to Berlin right now. Maybe you can get a seven-day cruise for 70% off, a package deal to Hawaii for the price of your flight to Paris, or 50% off sailing trips around Greece.
“I always have a budget for travel,” Naveen says. “That includes saving a couple hundred dollars a month towards a travel fund. This is the money that I saved through the IWT system. I use for hotels and restaurants.”
Compare flights and hotel prices for different dates online. If you find that the date you’re trying to book is WAY more expensive than another one a few months away, you might be booking on peak season.
And check-in online! Trust me, it’s no fun running through an airport with two young kids in toe because you are late arriving for check-in. To take the stress and hassle out of this, when possible we always check-in online.
When heading to a foreign country, Google Translate is a must. Ideally, you should download the language you want ahead of time so you can use it offline. Same goes for Google Maps. You can select an area you want to save and navigate without internet connectivity.
I am planning a trip to Europe in July 2014. I’m interested in learning more about your opinion of world nomads insurance. I’ve looked on their website since I saw you mention it and it looks like a great choice. Only thing I couldn’t find specified was electronkcs. Do you know if they specifically cover laptops or camera?
Forrester Research recently reported that one in five travelers wants to take a trip, but is at a loss about where to go. If you’re one of that 20 percent seeking inspiration, you’re in luck! A host of new online tools have been built just for you. Here are some of our favorites:
Don’t book a cruise on any of these consolidation sites. A travel agent specializing in cruises is always the better option because they have relationships with cruise lines, which means discounted rates; and they can score you deals on the cruise ship and with shore excursions.
US immigration lost our passports when we lived in the US whilst applying for an extension to our visa. Luckily we had copies so went to the Australian Embassy in LA and got emergency passports to leave the country on time, otherwise, we would have overstayed our visa!
We all want ease and convenience when traveling, especially when it comes to accessing our money. We also want to reduce our bank and transaction fees. The more money we keep in our own pockets, the more we have to spend on travel.
Choose activities everyone can participate in. Make sure you think of all of your travel companions when booking activities. If you are traveling with children, be sure planned activities are kid-friendly. If someone in your group has health or dietary considerations, try to be respectful of those as you plan the trip.
Many cities around the world offer local ride-sharing or taxi-hailing apps, so it’s worth checking if that’s something you’re willing to splurge on and download in advance. Having this tied to your credit card will eliminate to need to have cash handy first thing when you’re leaving the airport and getting a ride to your hotel. If you want to have some cash handy, however, you are more likely to get better rates exchanging it in advance with your local bank than to do so at airports.
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Plan A Vacation
Vacation Planning
Beware of hotels or airlines labeled “top picks” in your search results. These aren’t necessarily of a higher quality or better value. Instead, they are often a business partner of the booking site, and therefore get populated at the top of your search.
One of the simplest tools to use if you’re flexible is Google Flights’ Discover Destinations search. You can narrow search results from your home airport down length of travel, time of year, and / or continent and see a map research of how much it’ll cost to get there. You can even specify destinations by interests, such as “beaches,” “ecotourism,” or “honeymoon” to get some popular recommendations. From there, you can narrow results even further by setting a max price limit or choosing only nonstop flights.
Due to the Security Checks of my bank those people were not able to get money from my account as they mostly tried to make transactions in North America while I was in Argentina – because my bank knew where I am they blocked the card immediately.
Sometimes you won’t find your favorite or most convenient airlines on these sites. Southwest Airlines doesn’t list its flights with any third party vendors, while American Airlines is missing from both Orbitz and Expedia. When in doubt, search your itinerary directly with airlines to ensure that you don’t miss a cheap rate.
Another excellent and inspiring article. I don’t thank-you near enough for changing my thoughts of travel into dreams of travel, then plans, then actions, then reality. I’m still a budding traveler but it’s already changed my life and you helped me get here! Thank you for your amazing blog ?
There is a lot of information on this website (and even more information packed into my book), but one question that comes up frequently is “Matt, how do I put this all together? Tell me where to start.”
Peak season. This is the time of year when most tourists will visit a location. This is often due to good weather and holidays surrounding it (e.g., the Grand Canyon or Mount Rushmore in the summer). Flights and accommodations tend to be the most expensive during this time.
Hi Craig and Caz, since contacting you for planning advice last year we are now booked and on our way to Australia in just over a week. We are doing the Sydney to Brisbane drive over 3 weeks by hire car. I’ve planned most of our time using your brilliant ideas but just wondered what you would advice for travel around Sydney, we are there for 4 days staying in surry hills, no car hire until we leave Sydney. So I was thinking of getting us all the opal card for traveling around, or would you suggest the hop on and off tour bus, we are a family of 4, 3 adults & a 12 year old, planning on doing the bondi to coogee walk, circular walk and some ferry cruises to Manly, darling harbour etc. We live in rural England so are not particularly city wise, lol. Would love to get your advice. Best Wishes. Nicky
But most importantly, there are a lot of moving parts on a cruise trip (flight, transfer to ship, the cruise itself, etc.) and if one part goes awry, an experienced travel agent can use his or her connections to fix it. Meanwhile, if you’d booked your cruise via an aggregation site, you’d be stuck doing phone battle without a life preserver.
Also don’t ignore an amazing flight deal because it’s departing from a different airport than the one closest to you. Remember how it’s important to be flexible on when you leave? Same goes for where you leave.
You’ll almost certainly need a credit card when traveling in order to book flights, rental cars, hotels etc online. Providers require this for the security deposit, plus paying with a credit card provides some insurance and security for you.
Tip in a Tip: There are a ton of theories out there about the best time of day and the best day of the week to buy airline tickets. Some people say Tuesday at 3 p.m.; others say Wednesday at 1 a.m. or the weekend. So, which is it? I’ve done the research. Click here for the best time to book a ticket and to fly.
Packing cells are a lifesaver. In each packing cell, we roll up each item and arrange clothes based on type and season. And Caz loves her underwear organizer that rolls up and clips together like a little sleeping bag and sits in your suitcase neatly just like packing cells do.
The company specializes in last-minute fares, particularly the “blooper” and “mea culpa” ones that result when an airline messes up. Unlike a lot of companies, these folks also incorporate smaller airlines, such as Southwest and Allegiant, which are known for great prices but are often skipped over. If you’re not tied to a particular brand, this is a great way to save money. Click here for tips on using Airfarewatchdog.
If you need even more ideas, sites like Booking.com’s Destination Finder can also help you figure out where to go depending on interests. Once you know where you’re going, you can use tools from Kayak and Hopper to check whether a flight price is good value.
Once you know where you’d like to stay, be sure to specify needs like free in-room Wi-Fi or late check-ins to ensure you’re looking at the right options. When booking on sites like Airbnb or HomeAway, carefully read through the description to determine whether there’s a cleaning fee or extra person fee associated. Some hosts charge varying amounts extra which means a room costing $89 / night with no additional fees will end up cheaper for three days than $59 / night plus a $150 cleaning fee.
“One of my wife’s and I’s favorite thing to do each year is to go to Western Europe either over President’s Day weekend or MLK Day weekend. It’s not a holiday over there. The weather is not as nice as it is in America, but everything is half price and you can walk straight in.”