How to be your own Travel Agent

Where to start…

Things to consider:

1. Destination – If it’s a bucket list item then you know exactly were you’re going, but if not then looking at a map and figuring out distances and routes can be a great place to start.

2. Budget – Know your budget! What type of traveller are you? Hotels/B&Bs, Hostels, Couch Surfing.

3. How to get there? – Transport

4. Where you will stay? – Accomodation

5. How to get from your arrival point to your accommodation? – Transfers

>Something to Note

Once you’ve decided where you want to go and what you want to do consider two questions; 1. Is it safe?         2. Is it easy, advisable or possible? The answer to these two questions can effect all of your travel arrangements. For example if you are going somewhere where you will need to exercise an unusually high degree of caution and could be at risk, or don’t speak the language and will find it difficult to get around, consider booking a tour.  If a tour covers all of the things you want to do, and you wouldn’t mind or would prefer to travel with other people, then a tour could in fact kill multiple birds with one stone saving you the hassle of organising most of the travel details yourself. Of course tours are not for everyone and I myself only utilise certain types of tours for certain destinations but I appreciate that some tours serve a fantastic purpose and can in fact take you to places you would never have had access to or thought to go to without them.

Tour companies – Just to name a few that spring to mind

Contiki – Big groups, set itineraries, fast moving, see lots, love to party!

Busabout – Flexible loops, your own pace, breathable trips.

Vodkatrain – Local Honcho’s, small groups, no set itineraries, freedom to choose activities.

Topdeck – Lots included! ‘Topdeck’ experience, no hassles.

Intrepid – Three tour styles, optional themed trips, local level, small groups.

Geckos Adventures – Think local, unique experiences, free time.

Cruises – Variety: Ocean, River, Icy Waters, Island Hopper.

Transport Methods

Skyscanner – Finds the cheapest flights

Rome2rio – All the ways to get from A to B

Genius Flight – Flights from a certain destination within your chosen price bracket

Go Euro – Cheap rail, air and bus options

Bla Bla Car – Ride share

Hitch Hike

Car Hire

Airport shuttle services – Country specific

{Although big names like Eurail seem appealing as obvious options due to their popularity, local and national companies can be a lot cheaper! Rome2rio will show you what the local companies are in your destination country}

Accommodation Assistants

Hostelworld – Hostel Finder

Hostel Bookers – I don’t use this much but they have really good weekly deals

Airbnb – Bed & Breakfast Finder – Hotel Finder

Couch Surfing – A couch or bed free of charge and a chance to meet locals.

Sometimes consulting a travel guide book can point you in the right direction, telling you the easiest way to do something or get from A to B. You can also ask friends of fellow travellers who you know have done something you’re looking to do. When trying to organise a day trip sometimes it’s best to wait until you arrive at your accommodation and ask them there. They generally have ways of setting it up once you get there and or will know the best way to go about booking it. Alternatively email them in advance if you want to be prepared in advance and know for certain if you’re an organisation person who needs everything sorted before arrival.

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