Where to start.
Someone recently told me they wanted to travel, but didn’t understand how to begin. And I get it, that can be hard. There’s a lot of behind the scenes planning that goes into a vacation. Flight, accommodations, how to get to and from both airports, what to do once you’re there, piking a destination, requesting time off work, etc.
So I’m here to give you my learned tips and tricks and how I plan everything I do. First thing I do is book my flight. No, seriously. I book the flight before I do anything else. I usually use Skyscanner, Scott’s Cheap Flights, or Secret Flying. I usually type in my dates and I check the cheapest places to fly to out of Chicago, Windsor, Toronto, and Detroit. Once I settle on either a destination or date, I figure out the other. Cheapest time to fly to Dublin or cheapest place to fly to May 1st. It’s really that simple. Then book it. Great! Now we have times and places.
Okay, now, I do a little research. Where are the top places to see, top things to do, have any of my favorite travel bloggers been there, creep on them a bit, check the hashtag of that place on Instagram, now I have a list of everything I could possibly want to do/see in this place. I check some maps, find a central location, google that location real quick – make sure it’s not sketchy, then find a hotel, AirBnB, homeshare, hostel, VRBO, etc. I then book the place. So, main two parts, done!
Third thing I do is look back at that little list I made while researching. So let’s take Portland for example. I found out my list of things I wanted to do through Facebook recommendations, Instagram #portland tag, I looked through AirBnB experiences, checked my favorite travel blogger accounts, and asked for Oregon recommendations on Instagram. This narrowed me down to Mothers Bistro, the DIY bar, Multnomah Falls, Silver Falls, Revolution Hall, and the Pearl District. Once I made my Portland list, I made a rough itinerary and looked at what else I needed, aka a rental car.
And then, viola! Your trip, basically done. Little extras are just little things, packing, checking bag restrictions on the airlines, allocating funds for spending, you know, the easy basics.
Honestly though, everyone plans things differently. You might have a place in mind and aren’t flexible on dates, that’s a little more challenging to find the best prices. Or you might be dead set on going to Thailand but can go anytime. That is a little easier.
Comment below the first thing you do when planning a trip. I’m curious as to how others begin!