Hello! I have two exciting trips coming up, and I can’t wait to share with you all through blog posts but also through vlogs as well. If you haven’t, please subscribe and support! I also want to try and post more travel related content when I don’t have any trips. Today, I decided to share how I personally plan a trip. I’m kind of a perfectionist when it comes to planning for tips because I want to make sure I have a FABULOUS time. Here’s how I personally do it!
Buy that plane ticket early
Honestly, who doesn’t want the best deal? Buying the ticket in advance not only 99% of the time gives me the best deal but it also locks in that trip. I can make verbal trip wishlists all day long, but if I don’t have a ticket, nothing’s really set. In addition, I’ve seen friends who waited to get a better deal but ended up paying more… Personally, I am spontaneous enough to just BUY it when I feel like I need to go and deserve it. This is probably not always the best choice, but you know what? When I deserve it, I deserve it 🙂 It’s not like I’m doing anything too crazy- I think I’m pretty responsible and reasonable!
Be wise about sleeping
I’m not too much of a stickler when it comes to accommodation because after all, it’s just sleeping for a couple of hours. As long as there aren’t any roaches, it’s most likely okay… For me, the most important thing is location BUT everything is case-by-case. Depending on the location, I may want to stay at an affordable AirbNb that isn’t centrally located because spending money outside on food and attractions are way more worth it for the specific destination. However, another destination may be completely worth it to spend the extra money and stay central. Considering how long it takes to transport from one place to the other in the area, paying a little extra saves me time, money, and energy in the long run.
I utilize AirbNb, Hotwire or use the hotels I’m a member in (Marriott, SPG, Hilton or IHG) that is typically located in the downtown area or fairly close by. It’s always one or the other and I make sure to weight my pros and cons. With hotels, I usually get a good deal because my points come in super handy or my membership hotels almost always give me an upgrade!
Do HELLA research
When it comes to food and places to see, my true perfectionist side comes out. I actually do a spreadsheet for everything 🙂 It’s not like I have to go BY TIME (and there are people like that) but it makes me feel better to see an overview of what I’m doing, where I’ll be going and how everything is as far as distance.
Here are a few tools I love utilizing for my research:
- Google Maps: I love putting all my attractions and restaurants to see how everything is in distance.
- Different travel blogs: Bloglovin is a great platform to see different blog posts in one feed! Kind of like a Pinterest board but specifically for blogs. I get lots of travel tips of the area and different experiences from a variety of bloggers.
- TripAdvisor: Maybe it’s just me but the demographic that actively post photos and review on TripAdvisor tend to be older than I am. This also means there are very “raw” photos out there, a.k.a unfiltered photos. It’s so easy to get the wrong idea of a place, the food, the location because from filtered photos, but TripAdvisor usually has some realistic, accurate photos that help me get a clear understanding of what to expect!
- Instagram + Pinterest: Great for getting a sneak peek of the inside/exteriors, food, colors, and for planning my outfits around these places. I love to bring outfits that work with the backgrounds that I’ll have to deal with, so this helps me a lot.
- YouTube: There are so many people who upload videos on the destination, and videos help me SO MUCH. Again, I’m such a visual learner! I think YouTube is especially great for international travels. SOMEONE out there most likely posted a video on transportation methods, navigating the airport, food, currency, or useful passes that a tourist should know about, and so much more. These are so helpful because I can actually see and get a clear grasp of what to expect. Again, I’m such a visual learner so I like to SEE and videos are perfect for that.
The “I may never come back here” mindset
First, this is the mindset that I travel with all the time. I’m not a travel show host nor does my job require me to travel all around the world. It’s not all that easy when work and life get in the way to take trips like I used to! I try to get away as much as I can even if it’s just for the weekend. With all this said, I’ll most likely not go to the same place that I went to because I want to explore as many places as I can. When you have this mindset, you kind of start thinking about how much you want to utilize the time given because each day is so precious!
Do you have any upcoming travel plans? Connect with me on Instagram, and would love to hear where you’re headed to next! I have a couple of upcoming trips and I’m counting down the days. As always, thank you for reading 🙂
My previous travel posts in case you missed them:
- Travel Diary: Color Factory in NYC
- Travel Diary: New York City Eats
- My Visit to the Sweet Tooth Hotel
- Best Cute Coffee Shops in Houston
- Sun-Kissed in Mexico: Why I Travel
- Making the Most Out of An All-Inclusive Resort in Cancun