Germany in December? Costa Rica in the spring? I am forever planning my next trip. My friends and family are always asking me for tips in planning an international trip, especially if they are new to international travel.
It may seem daunting to plan an international trip, but with these few tips, you will be on your way.
- Where? Be open, I have a never ending bucket list of places I want to visit and I pretty much, check to see which of those places has the best prices when I get the itch to travel. Destinations currently on my radar are Dubai, Paris, Los Angeles, Peru and South Korea.
- When? Again, it’s better to be a little open. Try checking during off season times. Keep in mind that countries below the equator (Australia, South America) have opposite seasons to the US and Europe.
- Transportation? Transportation and lodging will be your most expensive budget items on your trip. Check flights during the middle of the week to get the best prices. Also, this is where those off peak times of year are going to save you some money. I usually travel in early spring or fall, especially for Europe and Carribean. I like to use sites where I can see an entire month of prices at the same time in order to find the best price. Skyscanner is a great choice because not only will it let me see the whole month, they will send price alerts straight to my email when fares change. We are also members of a travel club that has its own booking engine that is pretty awesome. That booking engine will automatically check (daily) for lower fares after you book hotels and flights. It will rebook you at the lower price if one is found. Nothing like waking up cheaper flight than the one you booked!
- Lodging? Don’t think that hotels are your only option for lodging. I’ve stayed in cool hostels that started at $13 a night. Check out HostelWorld to start that search and make sure you pay attention to reviews. You could also live like a local and go with private home or condo rental through Airbnb or Homeaway.
- Activities? This is the fun part. Check out Trip Advisor for top rated activities in hundreds of locations. Do see top attractions, but also throw in something a little different for a once in a lifetime experience. For example, along with laying on the beach in Costa Rica, I booked my friends and I a half day tour that included a chocolate making demo and sloth sanctuary tour. Turned out to be an amazing experience. Step out of the box and your comfort zone to try something new. You will be glad that you did.
How do you plan a big trip? Please comment below to share! 🙂
Talk to you soon,