Trip Planning 101: Five Apps That I Love For Wandering

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Trip Planning 101: Five Apps That I Love For Wandering

 
 

Creating an itinerary for every trip is crucial for me. This is mostly because I like to see ALL of the things and usually try to cover a lot of ground in a short period of time. I also like to have all of my confirmation numbers and reservations readily available. My itineraries consist of a list of ideas that we could see or do at our leisure as well as scheduled tours, flights or any activity that we need to arrive on time for. I normally spend quite a bit of time creating each itinerary and rely on 5 apps to help me organize all of my thoughts and to be the most efficient with my time.

Once I decide on a destination, I start to research everything from sights to capture, hikes to explore, and food to indulge in. This leads me to the first app that I use for planning a trip:

 
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1. Pinterest: I love that you can create a board specific for each trip and start pinning all of the amazing blogs that you want to read to help you create your travel itinerary. I normally start with searching “things to do in (fill in the blank)”, then when I start to see multiple blogs refer to the same sight or excursion I will search specifically for that item to get more detailed info. Pinterest has been the most helpful to me when looking into hikes. Most bloggers will tell you how long it took them, what is the best time of day to do the hike, how strenuous it was, etc. I haven’t yet found one single proficient app that gives you all of that important information.

2. Google Maps: Once I have a ton of notes and ideas after doing my research on Pinterest, I plug all of the locations into Google Maps so that I can decide how best to plan our days based on proximity to each other. From this, I am able to get an idea of how many days we need to see everything on my list. Sometimes I’m restricted by time and know I only have a set number of days available and in that case, I need to cut some excursions from my list. I never like to compromise on exploration though, so I normally have a “if there’s time” section on each itinerary just in case we have time to actually see ALL of the things. Once I know how each day should look I start to book lodging, flights and rental cars (which leads me to the next app I use.)

 
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3. Hopper: If you haven’t used Hopper yet, you’re truly missing out on cheap flights. If you have the luxury of time on your side and aren’t planning on taking this trip for several months, you can plug your desired departure and arrival destinations in as well as your preferred dates to travel on and Hopper does all of the work for you. Hopper will search multiple websites and tell you the best price currently and then tell you whether or not you should book now or wait. It’s very specific, too. It will send you updates with current prices and then follow it up with some solid advice such as “we recommend waiting to book your flight, prices are expected to drop over the next few weeks.” Or if it finds a great deal it will say “you likely won’t find a cheaper flight, we recommend booking now” and then give you the option to book the flight right through the app. You can also select to eliminate long travel times/layovers if your time is more valuable than your money.

4. AirBnB: This is my favorite app to book lodging. If you’re looking to spruce up your trip and break out of mundane hotels, this is a great place to start. They offer unique, privately owned places where you can usually find affordable prices. They are also starting to be a great search site for things to do as well as restaurants. I haven’t used the app for those purposes yet but plan to in the future.

 
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5. The Weather Channel: Last but certainly not least, I use the weather channel app to help determine the best time of year to visit locations and when my trip is coming up, I use it to help me pack. It’s a great gauge to help prepare me with warmer clothes or to know if I’ll be needing to brace myself for a heat wave and pack extra deodorant!

This list is always evolving and changing but currently these are my top 5 picks. 

 
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What apps do you use to plan your trips?

 

 
Images by Personal Branding Maven  Elise Kutt  at  Mod Bettie Portraits

Images by Personal Branding Maven Elise Kutt at Mod Bettie Portraits

My name is Anna VanAgtmael, and I am a certified yoga instructor with a passion for yoga, travel, and connecting with others.

I believe in trying everything once. My values lie in collecting memories over things. Though we desire adventure and authentic experiences, naturally our fear holds us back.

My ambition is to inspire and encourage you to unmask your fears and jump into the unknown.

Anna VanAgtmael | Yoga Enthusiast | Trip Planning Wizard