Planning a trip should NOT be something super complex and MUST be something that brings you pleasure, no less than the journey itself. This is a rule that same applies to me ?
Thanks to my many years of working in a travel agency, I learned how to plan different trips and helped thousands of tourists and even groups. Now I just love planning trips for myself and my friends.
So, below you will find my simple easy steps for planning any “dream trip” for yourself, your family or friends. In my opinion, the most important thing in my list is that you don’t find a сatalog of the smart and expensive devices that you need to buy before traveling or the hundreds of things that should be done before a trip! Everything is simple, concise and most importantly really USEFUL for any traveler.
Let’s start :
SET A BUDGET
Yes, this is the most difficult part, especially when your budget is limited. BUT! no worries, and no limits! even with 200 euros (since (€) for me it is accustomed currency I use it more often in my blog) in your pocket you can do it! ?
One more important thing: I am against HARD saving. If you have such stress before each trip, then the journey itself will not give you so much pleasure. Therefore, set yourself a REAL BUDGET and start planning ahead!
CHOOSE A DATE (DATES) AND TRAVEL DURATION
If you have a flexible work schedule or you are not working, then choosing a date is not a problem. But, if you have scheduled vacations and you are not traveling alone, then you will have to сonfirm and indicate the date of the trip in advance.
To be honest, I like this option more than spontaneous holidays. I book a trip (especially for festive days) sometimes and a year ahead ?, when there is a wide choice of accommodations available. So, set a date or month of your trip and PLAN AHEAD!
The duration of the trip should also be reasonable. If you have a long distance flight it makes no sense to go on holiday for several days only, and it is better to choose a shorter distance destination. The duration depends on your free time and budget. So, make calculations and plan accordingly.
CHOOSE A DIRECTION
This is the most important part! V
For example, it does not make sense to visit the Greek islands in late autumn, winter or early spring, but Athens is popular all year around.
If you are not sure of your choice, the reviews about the best months for a trip for each destination can help a lot. In my ultimate guides for every country or island, I also mention the best month to visit.
In general, travel budget, dates, duration, and direction are very related. If you have your approximate dates and budget, then the direction and duration of the trip will be easier to choose.
My advice is to select several destinations and only then proceed to search for tickets.
Another important step in the planning your travel tour is booking your air tickets. If you choose between several destinations, check where it is a more convenient flight for you and keep in mind the cheaper one. As soon as you have made a decision, then things get more interesting…
Do not be LAZY! Check all possible websites for booking tickets. On my blog, you can find my personal TRAVEL RESOURCES section which you can use as well. You will find my favorite and trustable air tickets websites, which guaranteed you to find the right tickets for the right prices.
First, look for special offers or profitable flight connections. Did you know that connecting flights can be much cheaper than direct ones and if you look at the price for one person, is it usually cheaper than a price for two or group? YES, IT IS!
Before booking, carefully read the baggage allowance, as many airlines like to change them often and not in our favor …
When you finally booked your tickets , then move to the next step…
I have to admit, hostels and flats for rent are not for me… I prefer hotels, I just like the atmosphere there: breakfast, room service, 24-hour reception. I like apartments too, however I choose them rarely.
Booking.com is my favorite search engine at the moment! They have an extensive database of hotels, but also apartments. Other pluses: convenient search system, flexible cancellation policy, many payment options (even you can pay on the spot), booking without a credit card, and most important competitive prices. Yes, now booking.com is full of budget options and with really good discounts.
So where to start?, in such a variety of accommodation options? CHOOSE A LOCATION! Believe me, the good location of the hotel (apartment and etc.) will make your stay more comfortable and safe. Therefore, read a few reviews where it is better to stay for tourists and which areas should not be considered for staying. I usually book in advance several options (without cancelation fees), and then choose among them or later I might find better choices and cancel my previous bookings. In other cases, the non-refundable rate is beneficial when you are 100% sure about
What is important for me while I choosing accommodation: a good location within walking distance from the main attractions, the modern interiors, and a breathtaking view from my room. If you book in advance, you can mostly find some very affordable attractive prices.
BOOK AN INSURANCE
Do not miss this step‼, it is just like tickets and accommodation booking, a mandatory part of any trip! I will not list all the reasons why insurance is so important (I am thinking to write a whole article about it later) but believe me, nobody is insured from the unpleasant moments during the holidays and in this case, even the minimum insurance will be your best assistant.
Like many travel bloggers, I use the trustable Worldnomads.com insurance platform. It is very easy: you enter trip’s and your personal details, and immediately you get the cost. Usually, prices are affordable, but be sure to read all terms and conditions!
CHECK THE MAIN TRAVEL INFORMATION & TIPS
This kind of information & more can be found on my website.
Here is also a checklist to help you prepare for your trip. This is really valuable information and will come in handy when you are planning your next trip:
- Visa and documents (of course, this should be considered before booking a trip, but it is worth checking everything once more).
- General information about the destination (main language, currency, time zone, weather, traditions and etc.)
- Internet and mobile services (devices for a trip)
- Saving travel cards & discount cards
- How to get from/to airport
- Main attractions & Sightseeing
- Excursions and tours (my preference viator.com)
- Local cuisine and where to eat
This list can still be added since each direction is unique. But if you are not a passive tourist, this information will make your trip much more interesting and richer.
PACK A LUGGAGE
This becomes a rather difficult problem as soon as the luggage is limited to cabin baggage. Most girls will understand me?
Therefore, the main task for us is to fit into those 8-10 kilograms and at the same time do not forget anything. The first and most important step is to start packing your luggage a few days before the trip and not last minute.
Make a list of all necessary things. Check for how many days you need clothes, what will be the weather there, take comfortable shoes (sneakers), jeans (pants, shorts) and a variety of tops (shirts, T-shirts), don’t forget a few outfits for the evening ?. Everything else depends on the season.
Try on different combinations of clothes before you take them – this will save you space.
Check out all the electronic devices that you take with you and most importantly! do not forget to recharge them and check the memory card (as my boyfriend was forgetting).
If you are not traveling alone, share the things that both of you use, like toothpaste. Do not forget that there are transportation restrictions of liquids in the cabin baggage and many things you can buy on the spot upon arrival!
Put all DOCUMENTS, a first aid kit, cosmetics, travel guides, personal hygiene items and the most important! the things that you REALLY NEED, and not JUST IN CASE!
If you have an early departure, set up SEVERAL! alarms and arrange transportation to the airport in advance. Double check: documents, wallet, mobile telephone, your company? and the most important thing – GOOD MOOD!
You are ready for a new adventure!
xxx Yours, K.