PART 1: HOW TO MAKE YOUR OWN PLANS
|How To Make Your Own Travel Plans|
Making your own plans involves the patience and time to explore all options. If you love to shop and browse, you already have this mindset. The more you travel and make your own plans, the quicker the process, even when you start to explore new destinations.
Be able to use the Internet with a desktop computer, a laptop, a tablet or a smartphone. This is essential and crucial. Create accounts on various sites and to purchase with your debit or credit card online. To minimize hacking and if you're concerned with security issues, you may want to designate one card for purchases. Third, for some alternative lodging (like vacation rentals), you may need a PayPal account.
2. Where to go?
That depends on the reason, the time of year and your budget. Talking to people is one way to get ideas; watching travel shows is another; you'll get ideas watching movies, going to an event, following hobbies (your favorite team, performing artist or fan conventions). Still others have a mission: the top roller coasters, every water park, waterfalls, lighthouses, national parks, etc. You may want to golf the most famous courses or you may be a food or wine connoisseur. Finally, there is the wish or bucket list: all the major cities, every continent, all 50 US states, you get the picture. Whatever the reason, all trips have three basic components: how to get there, where to stay and what to do or where to go.
3. Do Your Research
|How To Get There|
If you are flying, there are tons of search engines. These sites will scan all the possibilities for you without you having to go to each individual airline's website. Popular sites are Kayak, Orbitz, Cheapoair, Expedia, Travelocity, Hipmunk, Hotwire and Hopper. Most will let you set notifications so that you can keep track of prices.
If you are sure of which airline you want, you may get the best price directly at that site. I usually view the prices on a search engine site and then I usually go to the airline and book it. This is because I like to make sure I get any rewards.
If you are taking a bus, there are also many options. I do not travel by bus but others do. I would only recommend this for short journeys, especially if you do not drive or taking your car is not feasible. Greyhound and Trailways are still around but traveling by budget bus has become very popular: Megabus, BoltBus, etc. Budget Travel's website has some suggestions:
Finally, there is driving by automobile, whether it's your car or a rental. AAA, Map Quest, Google Maps, Maps.Me and every GPS app known to man will give you any type of directions you need.
|Resort, Hotel or Apartment?|
5. Where to stay?
Resort, hotel or motel or rented apartment: the above-mentioned search engines have lodging information also. There's also Hotels.com, Getaroom.com and Hotel Tonight.
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