When I started out travelling I didn’t have a clue, I just booked and flight, packed my bags and went for it. Now after over 10 years of travelling, planning and making mistakes I’ve managed to collate some of the best travel resources I use for every trip! No more searching endlessly for answers, it’s all here!
What are travel resources? They are the services and products that make travel planning easier and more affordable. It includes everything from accommodation to help forums for answers to specific questions you can’t find anywhere else.
Each resource listed below is one that I regularly use and I believe you to find them useful also.
Great for all countries but extra useful for those less visited countries, Wikitravel is an essential travel resource that I simply couldn’t travel without. It is my favourite resource for those off the beaten track destinations and helps a great deal with up to date safety situations, most of which aren’t exaggerated.
Booking a tour a restaurant or a hotel and want to read some reviews of fellow travels then tripadvisor is the website for you. I tend to scan over the reviews since we are experiencing an epidemic of fake reviews so be cautious as to what you believe. It’s also a great tool to find things to do in a city, region or country. The forum section is also great to answer any other specific travel queries, similar to The Lonely Planet forum.
The amount of questions already asked on this platform is so impressive that your query may already be answered. Like the trip advisor forum it is full of experienced travellers ready to help you out with visa, transport and general travel advice you might be struggling to find on the internet.
They all do the same thing, it just depends which you prefer using. A good option is choosing “anywhere” as the destination and if you are flexible with your travel dates then you can also choose “cheapest month” to be sure that you’ll get a good deal!
If you are extra flexible with your travel dates and don’t mind spending £35 a year on the subscription then Jacks Flight Club is a great option. They will email you through the year with the cheapest fares leaving from your country, the savings you can make are incredible. An example I got was London to Manila in peak season for £300…..RETURN!
Need to book a flight to apply for a visa but don’t want to risk losing the cash if your visa gets rejected? Then get onto fake flights and spend £5/flight, something I have had to do quite a bit for a few of my African visas.
Generally I stay in hostels, a great way to meet people, get local information from the staff and of course the value for money. Hostelworld is probably the biggest online database of hostel accommodation on the internet. Use the map function for the best location and use the filter options to find exactly what you want.
If I am looking something a little nicer, more private or if there just isn’t any hostels then I always use booking.com which has properties in almost every country in the world. The free cancellation on some of the properties are a great option!
More recently this app has skyrocketed its popularity and you can see why. Anyone is able to join and offer their room or house up for rent. If you want a cheap studio apartment or maybe a swanky beachfront villa you are sure to find it here.
Accommodation is the second biggest expenditure when travelling and a great way to make huge savings is using couchsurfing. Apart from the huge savings (as there is no charge from the host) you will benefit from the local knowledge of the host themselves. I have used it a few times where the host had given me tips on where to go, places I never heard of. It can also be used to meet a local for a coffee if you wish to stay somewhere else.
You don’t need to use Google Maps but it’s offline function is super useful when you are in a city you don’t know with no network.
Mapseme had the offline function before google and I swore by it everywhere I went. In really off beaten locations I still use both as sometimes the other would be more reliable and you just never know which. Just be sure to download the maps before you leave!
Uber is a convenient and sometimes cheaper way to get around. In certain places you wouldn’t dream of getting into a taxi but with ubers review and security system it’s easy to vet your next driver but do always pay attention.
Completely necessary to increase security when surfing the web, not to mention the ability to watch home television you would have since missed. Another huge benefit is the ability to use Facebook, Google, Whatsapp amongst many more in countries that have decided to outlaw them.
Want to keep track of which countries you have visited then Been app is the one for you. Been displays as interactive map and list to show you exactly where you have and have not “Been”.
A free and enjoyable app I used extensively before my trip to South America and one that helped me greatly. With just 30 minutes a day you would be surprised how easy it is with Duolingo.
To this day I am shocked that people travel long periods of time without insurance. I have been omitted to hospital and lost my luggage on 4 separate occasions, so for me it will always be 100% necessary. World Nomads are reliable and helpful when things go wrong which means you can worry less and continue on with you trip.
My first travel card and one of the best with no fees on transactions or even cash withdrawals. One thing to note that cash withdrawals need to be paid ASAP as interest begins on the moment the money is withdrawn. Using the Clarity Card will get you the best interest rate on the market without commission. For the latest information, checkout https://www.halifax.co.uk/creditcards/clarity-card/
Generally speaking most countries accept Mastercard and Visa but after my recent trip in Africa some countries seem to prefer VISA as my Mastercard didn’t work which proved to be a bit of a nightmare. Since then I applied for the Barclaycard Platinum cashback which offered 0.5% on spending for the first 3 months and then 0.25% thereafter. Checkout the latest information here https://www.barclaycard.co.uk/personal/credit-cards/platinum-cashback-plus