Planning is the least favorite part of any trip. Over a period of time, I have discovered some sources that give me a fair idea about the places to visit, expenses and other useful information. In this blog post, I will share the sources that I have used in the past to plan my trips.
1) YouTube: When I planned my trip to Europe, I depended heavily on Rick Steves’ Europe YouTube videos. They are very informative. I copied his itinerary. Additionally, I followed Gabriel Traveler whose channel gives you an estimate about how expensive a country is likely to be and Dennis Callan’s videos for exploring some of the cities.
I followed a YouTube channel by the name of HowTube to plan my visit to South East Asia, specially Vietnam.
A lot of other similar channels pop up on the sidebar and you can watch more videos about the places you plan on visiting.
2) Guide Books: If you do not want to plan in advance, you can just buy a guide book which has plenty of suggestions about accommodation, places to visit, places to eat out, transportation, safety and a lot of other important information. You can also buy a kindle version if you do not want to haul the heavy book. Some YouTubers have released their guidebooks as well. You can always go for the Lonely Planet guide book.
3) Official travel sites: Some places have really good travel sites. They would give you information about ticket prices, best time to visit, holidays, government approved guesthouses and homestays, in addition to giving some historical and cultural background.
I found the official website for Kerala Tourism very helpful. I booked a Bhunga in Kutch from the sources listed on the official Gujarat Tourism website.
4) Blogs: Blogs can give you a really good idea about some of the unexplored places close to major attractions and how to reach there. Sometimes bloggers share the mistakes they made like taking a wrong ferry to a place and precautions you need to take or holidays you need to keep in mind before you travel. With that in mind, you can travel with a peaceful frame of mind by not repeating the same mistakes. For some destinations, it is difficult to find accommodation or transportation online and in such cases bloggers can share how and where they stayed and what transportation they used. The tips come in very handy.
5) Travel websites with forums: Websites such as Lonely Planet and Trip Advisor can give you a good idea about your chosen destination. You can also ask questions on public forums. On many occasions, you will find that someone has already asked the question you have in mind and it has already been answered.
Rome2Rio is another website that gives all the information about mode of transportation available, the time they take, pricing and schedule. I found this website very useful.