“Travel is so cliché”, said no one ever. Everyone wants to travel! Everybody wants to experience different cultures or see amazing views or watch the sun set on that stunning Galapagos beach. But not everyone ends up travelling. Why? Because it’s expensive. They’re not wrong. Travel is really expensive. Flights, hotel rooms, food–it all adds up and all that money you’ve put toward that Volkswagon has suddenly disappeared. But I’ve been researching travelling for the past two months since I decided to hit up London and Switzerland with a short detour to Italy, for 2 whole weeks at the end of August. And I decided to compile my own (and several other people’s) wisdom so that you, loyal readers, can stop saying no to your dreams.
1. Google Flights: It’s the best thing on the planet. Seriously. Stop booking through travel agencies because you’re paying for commission and while you might think you’re getting a good deal, you’re really getting an easy deal. Instead, look up Flights on Google which compiles every airline flight, price and travel time. I booked my one way trip to London for $362 CAD and my trip out of Geneva for $450 CAD. Spending about $812 for flights to Europe feels pretty fantastic. I did book three months in advance which does play a big role in costs!
2. Booking.com: I don’t normally like promoting sites but I planned all my hotel rooms through Booking.com this year. They have free cancellation option and a great interface for users. They also offer hotels, hostels, guest rooms etc, and free breakfast options. I’ve compared direct hotel prices vs. Booking.com vs. Travelocity and was surprised that Booking.com won simply because they’re honest about their prices and they’re really cheap. Their customer service is pretty great too!
3. Deutsch Bahn: Travelling to Europe? Get this app! It’s a German train schedule app but it eerily accurate about train schedule across the continent and show prices, precise timings and maps. Plus it’s in English and the app is really easy to use to map out your spur of the moment trip. A must have!
4. Couchsurfing: A fantastic way to stay in countries for free! And you’ll make amazing friends most of the time. Or so I’ve heard from numerous sources. I’m testing this app out this summer in Switzerland with a friend. In theory, this sounds sightly scary but mostly cool because it’s such a good way to save money and meet locals!
5. Uber: A huge must in my book simply because cabs are sometimes expensive and if you’re stuck in a new country with no cash or a stolen wallet and need to get to your hotel room/embassy, Uber swoops in to save the day. You get a driver by paying through the app so you don’t need cash in hand and won’t get ripped off when you don’t know the local language! Plus it ends up being cheaper than regular cabs. Trust me, get the app because it may end up saving your bacon.
I highly recommend Nomadic Matt’s blog because that’s where I ended up with all my research. I even signed up for his mailing list because that’s how amazing his tips are! I also advice that you spend time researching everything because there are so many ways you can save money. Hotels vs. hostels, Couchsurfing vs. Airbnb, etc. is all personal preference in my opinion. Do your research, travel smart and you’ll end up travelling more. Hope you find these tips helpful! Read on for our GIVEAWAY.
Now is your chance to win some of these essentials to make sure you are covered for your next getaway! To win an assortment of Travel Essentials we ask that you follow @lipsticktrilogy and @always_kaye on Instagram and answer the question posted on our Instagram page in the caption. This week will be dedicated only to travel related posts on Instagram and the blog. To qualify, you must be a Greater Toronto Area resident and can meet up with us in the downtown core, TO to claim your prize. This us NOT a sponsored giveaway and all the items were purchased by us and Kaye. The deadline is Wednesday, July 13th and the winner will be announced shortly afterwards. We hope you enjoy this week as much as we will enjoy hearing from you!
Until next time,