Things to do while preparing for your trip, including planning where to go, budgeting, etc.

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84
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11answers
23k views

How can I do a “broad” search for flights?

Several airline and trip planning sites will allow you to check "I am flexible with my dates" or a similar option. Is there any way to also search more broadly for location? For example, if you ...
80
votes
13answers
13k views

How to spot fake reviews on TripAdvisor?

I know that review sites like TripAdvisor have fake reviews (some hotels more than others) - how can I make sure I am looking at the 'real' reviews as using TripAdvisor can be very tricky to filter ...
58
votes
12answers
5k views

Is there a good website to plan a trip via trains in Europe?

My wife and I have decided to move across Europe by train. Do you know of any good sites for planning a trip via train (schedule and maybe prices)? We're going to go across Europe from east (Russia ...
32
votes
7answers
6k views

Celebrating the same new year several times over?

Is there a commercial service offered to general public that allows you to celebrate the new year several times? The idea is that you would celebrate it in a time-zone and than move to the next one ...
32
votes
4answers
126k views

Can I use Google Maps traffic information to estimate driving time for a specific date/time?

In supported regions, Google Maps will tell me how long it will take to drive from A to B in current traffic conditions. It can also colour-code roads according to traffic conditions for a specific ...
28
votes
2answers
2k views

What is the best time of year to visit Reykjavík?

When I ask for the "best" time of year, I am looking for a reasonable balance of the following criteria, in order of importance: Mild weather. Ideally, warm enough to have coffee outside in a light ...
28
votes
2answers
395 views

Is there a website/tool which can generate a reachability map from a given point?

I'm currently planning a four-day holiday with friends of mine who live in different regions of Germany. Now we're trying to find a holiday home that everyone of us can reach in less then 3.5h by car. ...
26
votes
6answers
5k views

How to tell if travel location is “affordable”?

Disclaimer: The location are just examples to set up the question and all prices are made up for the sake of the example and question. Background: Lets say I am deciding between London and Busan to ...
26
votes
7answers
4k views

How does one recover from a (personal) disaster while abroad, travel-wise?

I was watching the Bond flick Die Another Day last night. In it, Bond ends up in terrible shape, but manages to escape to the shores of Hong Kong, where he strolls into the lobby of a swanky hotel, is ...
25
votes
3answers
3k views

How to figure if it is safe to travel to the area I am interested in?

When planning a trip, I like to make sure I will feel safe enough (I am talking about war/terrorism risk, not pickpockets), or at least I like to have an idea about the risks. I know the risk could be ...
25
votes
4answers
58k views

What is the best method of purchasing a ticket with an open return date?

I’ve been doing some research on traveling to South America and staying for an extended period of time (working vacation). The usual sources for flight info (Kayak, Expedia, Hipmunk) don’t have any ...
24
votes
14answers
497 views

What are some good ways to find things to explore on-site in an unfamiliar place?

When traveling, one of my favorite things to do is simply explore the local area and see what's going on. I do enjoy guided tours on some occassions, but I'm more interested in finding cool local ...
24
votes
2answers
85k views

Is there an easy way to calculate the total cost of tolls for a trip within the United States?

Is there a convenient way to calculate the cost of tolls between two arbitrary points within the United States? I'm planning to take a trip along the Eastern seaboard and will be passing through ...
23
votes
9answers
9k views

What times of the year are best for visiting France?

When I visited Rome, Italy, I ended up visiting during August which seems to be a time when most Italians have fled the city to cooler areas. This was nice because there was less traffic so we were ...
22
votes
8answers
4k views

Driving through every country in Europe

I'm thinking about planning a trip where I drive though every country in Europe. I know that there are people who have driven though every state in the US. There is information online about their ...
22
votes
9answers
1k views

Is there a list of online public transportation planners?

For Oslo in Norway you can go to ruter.no, punch in where you are and where you want to go. It then gives you options on how to get from point A to point B using various public transportation (and ...
21
votes
5answers
9k views

How do you prepare for long haul flights?

I'm always feeling a bit unwell during and after long haul flights. I lose my appetite, can't sleep in the plane, food has no taste no matter what. However, I'm pretty sure it's not the flying itself, ...
21
votes
5answers
31k views

Getting into a fully booked hotel?

Perchance where I'm travelling to has really crappy availability in terms of vacancies for when I'm going. All of the hotels near the area are fully booked for the weekend. I called the front desk for ...
20
votes
6answers
36k views

What is the minimum time to consider with a connecting flight in the USA?

Given the extensive time taken for immigration formalities in the US, what is the shortest time to consider between connecting flights in the US, when coming from abroad? Until now I have always ...
20
votes
5answers
5k views

Is there a guarantee that flightfox.com will be cheaper than other booking methods?

Recently, I tried to use flightfox, as I have read that they are much cheaper than other websites. Before proceeding with my booking however, I was faced by the fact that I had to pay a $49 fee before ...
20
votes
3answers
2k views

How to find dates of big events in any city? (e.g. to avoid price surge during trade fair)

Is there a resource that warns me for (almost) any city / destination when my travel dates coincide with some big event there? Illustrative example: Say I want to travel to Frankfurt and I'm fairly ...
19
votes
10answers
4k views

What sort of computer / electronic device would you take on a backpack trip around Europe to allow you to keep in touch?

As you may have seen in my other posts I am in the early stages of planning my Eurotrip this summer which if you are interested in seeing the planned route go here: http://www.tripline.net/trip/...
19
votes
4answers
781 views

Is there a flight search engine that has an option to show full flights?

Quite often when searching for plane tickets I get only some high priced results, ridiculous schedules, etc. It makes me wonder if these are the only options to get from point A to point B or have I ...
18
votes
4answers
16k views

How to prepare for very long train journeys?

A friend of mine is going to take a very long train journey the next week. The journey takes 44 hours according to the train schedule and takes place in Europe. He has to change trains two times. Once ...
18
votes
5answers
1k views

Raft trip down a river

As many of you may already have figured it out from simply reading the title, the inspiration to undertake a raft trip came to me when I first read Huckleberry Finn many years ago. I am a young adult ...
18
votes
4answers
553 views

How can I tell hotels exist that aren't on the booking web sites?

There are a ton of sites out there to help book hotel rooms and to aggregate all the different sites to book hotel rooms. These companies make enough money to buy ads on TV, so I won't name them here. ...
17
votes
7answers
7k views

What's the use of trains that spend 6+ hours of daytime en route?

There's such thing as "a daytime train" - a train which runs all the route during daytime. Some of them run really long routes - 500-700 kilometers - and a train spends 6-8 hours en route to run such ...
17
votes
11answers
3k views

How to calculate the air-line distance between two places?

A lot of the time, I'm looking for a way to calculate the air-line distance between two places, most often city centers. For example when I flew from Zurich to Helsinki I wanted to know how far it ...
17
votes
3answers
2k views

Cheapest flight to anywhere at any given time

I'm looking to take a spontaneous trip for a long weekend. The date is flexible and the destination can be anywhere in the world. Is there a site that would allow me to search airfares within a date ...
17
votes
4answers
2k views

Searching for flights to “Anywhere” in narrow time frame

Is there any website that allows searching for (cheap) flight to any destination in a narrow time frame? Ideally I look for the cheapest flights while specifying only: Departure airport (bonus if ...
17
votes
3answers
570 views

An online map indicating the status of all open and closed international borders

I like to make up my own interesting international routes on my longer trips rather than always following conventional routes. But often it's tricky to plan a route in lesser-known parts of the world ...
16
votes
5answers
14k views

How fast can one expect to travel in an ocean-going sailboat?

Assuming two different trips - one with a current and one without, what is a reasonable speed to assume for a journey? First - Norfolk, VA to Bermuda to the Azores to Liverpool Second - Liverpool to ...
16
votes
3answers
764 views

What is the best time of year to go to Disney World to avoid crowds?

When is the least busy time of year for Disney World? When should I go there such that there are the least number of people there?
16
votes
3answers
359 views

Travel planning web sites

I am currently planning a 2 month trip through China, and I wanted to know what are the best online options to plan a trip. First off : I am really looking for an alternative to a spreadsheet. ...
15
votes
5answers
2k views

Travel options from London to Edinburgh

I plan to travel from London to Edinburgh this November and want to know the fastest option to travel from London to Edinburgh
15
votes
5answers
1k views

Can you go to the Maldives without assistance of a travel agency?

Organizing your travel without agents is almost always cheaper and more fun. But does that also apply for Maldives? Can I just travel to the Maldives? Do you have some tips or experiences to report?
15
votes
3answers
634 views

Travel in Morocco during Ramadan?

I'm planning to visit Morocco this summer with my girlfriend, from 20/07 to 3/08. We'll arrive during Ramadan, and I've heard and read many things about the change of lifestyle there, but at the end, ...
15
votes
3answers
862 views

What's a good alternative to Dopplr?

From the Dopplr website: Dopplr is a service for smart international travellers. Dopplr members share personal and business travel plans privately with their networks, and exchange tips on ...
15
votes
3answers
7k views

Scotland in one week: What to see and do?

I'm planning to visit Scotland this August with some friends, but we only have one week. We have already made a sketch of our trip and so far we have in mind to visit Glasgow, Stirling, Kyle Of ...
15
votes
2answers
134 views

Sahara in Morocco - Do we need 4x4 car?

I plan a roadtrip which will start in Tanger and ends probably in Marrakech. We want to go mostly through Eastern Morocco. Tanger -> Rif ... etc., then go through Sahara as long as possible. We are ...
14
votes
9answers
1k views

Why are Americans and Asians in such a rush when traveling in Europe? [closed]

Americans and Asians (and maybe other nationals) seem to have a tendency to rush through Europe when traveling there. They will do some epic "10 countries in 2 weeks" or such. I understand pre ...
14
votes
5answers
764 views

Kindle version of WikiTravel?

Is everyone's favorite open content travel guide, WikiTravel, available in some sort of Kindle / off-line format? Since I'll be travelling around, I won't have internet access. However I do have a ...
14
votes
6answers
2k views

Avoiding or minimising altitude sickness?

From my personal anecdotal experience, I've seen first-hand some horror stories with altitude sickness. I will always tell people now to acclimatise, drink fluids, and follow the local tricks like ...
14
votes
2answers
697 views

Flight Search from anywhere to a specific destination

Many flight search engines allow you to pick a departure airport and search for flights to anywhere. E.g. Google flights gives you a nice map with prices next to destinations for a set of dates and an ...
13
votes
7answers
2k views

Paranoid about missing my return flight home from Rome. What to do?

I haven't been to Europe in 11 years. My wife and I (and our 8 year old son) will be taking a trip to Italy this late November. We will be traveling from Venice to Florence to Rome. We will be ...
13
votes
5answers
394 views

What kind of questions should I be asking about tropical destinations?

Tropical destinations have to be one of the most popular categories, which means there are always deals popping up, so it's hard not to be driven by these deals. If I'm merely looking at the ...
13
votes
4answers
1k views

Which websites allow “search by country” for a flight?

I came to know about Whichbudget, it's a website that allow search for flights by country. I mean you just enter from like "Germany" and to like "Belgium" and you get best offers from all airports ...
13
votes
3answers
313 views

What first aid material and medicines are absolutely essential when traveling?

When you arrive into a new place / city country / etc. it can be difficult to find some essential goods. Everything is new. First aid material and medicines are sometimes forgotten when planning a ...
13
votes
4answers
457 views

What is some useful software for brainstorming/planning long trips?

I'm planning on taking my partner and his family on a trip around the UK next year, and I have a ton of ideas in my head that I want to have written down in some form that makes it easy to edit and ...
13
votes
2answers
771 views

How to see the Norwegian fjords

I am currently working in The Hague area of the Netherlands. This summer is too cold to spend weekends on the beach, so I've decided to spend 3-4 days seeing the Norwegian fjords instead. I ...