As long term travelers we’ve learned to become pretty good at finding the best resources to make traveling the world easier, cheaper and more fun. Not only because it’s our job, but because we’re always looking for ways to help the traveling community maximize their time, money and experiences.
Below you’ll find a list of our best resources for independent travel. From booking the cheapest flights and best hostel deals, to finding authentic travel experiences through food and friends.
Travel Resources for Finding Flights
SecretFlying – Shhh, don’t tell too many people. This site is amazing! Granted, you need to have pretty flexible plans, but if you can find a flight that works for your trip you’ll save TONS of money. Or maybe you’re just looking for a spontaneous getaway? SecretFlying is a site dedicated to finding airline discounts, errors or glitches in the system where ridiculously cheap flights become available. We’re talking New York to the Cayman Islands for $260USD return! There are hundreds of amazing deals on their site, so poke around and be sure to thank us later!
SkyScanner – Similar to Kayak and other flight search engines, but so many more features. We love SkyScanner because they really give you amazing flexibility in your searches. Set your departing airport and search for countries instead of specific airports, or try your luck at their ‘Everywhere’ function that will find you the cheapest spots to fly all over the world. If your dates are flexible you can also search for a month, as opposed to Kayak’s five day flexi search.
Best Travel Websites for Accommodation
HostelWorld – Not only are hostels a super sociable way to meet new traveling companions, but they’re also one of the cheapest places to stay. HostelWorld has a massive database of hostels all over the world, with ratings and reviews for you to find your perfect match. And don’t just associate hostels with grungy shared rooms and cold showers, in the last few years hostels have really taken a turn for the better. Look out for boutique hostels, with all the social perks of a hostel and the home comforts of a hotel.
TrustedHousesitters – Want to stay in beautiful houses for free? Yep, you heard us correctly… FREE! TrustedHousesitters is an awesome website that helps you connect with hosts looking for eager housesitters to take care of their home (and sometimes their adorable pets) while they’re away. From fancy French chateaus to Aussie beach houses, there’s everything and anything in between just waiting for you!
CouchSurfing – Kind of like the Facebook for hospitality exchange, this social networking platform allows you to find hosts generously offering up their place to travelers. The Couchsurfing community is an amazing way to meet likeminded travelers, share experiences and gain new cultural insights. It shouldn’t be used as a free accommodation opportunity, but it’s a nice perk to go along with making new friends. We’ve used Couchsurfing numerous times in the past and always had incredible experiences: from finding new surfing buddies in Mexico to hosting travelers down the Great Ocean Road in Australia.
AirBnB – A great alternative if you long for your own place and want to take a break from hostel or hotel life. You’ll get the luxuries and comforts of your own place, which is perfect for really experiencing somewhere like a local. You can find anything from a shared room in someone’s house, to your own private villa. Want to try it out? Click here and receive $30USD towards your first stay!
HotelsCombined – If you are looking to mix it up for a night or two in some more luxurious locations we recommend checking out HotelsCombined for the best deals. HotelsCombined is a comprehensive search engine (kind of like Google for accommodation) that’ll track down the best deals on hostels, guesthouses, hotels, resorts and everything else you need to make your stay enjoyable. Another good site similar to HotelsCombined, especially if you’re around Asia, is Agoda.
WayToStay – Similar to AirBnB, but specific to Europe. And because it’s by Europe, for Europe, you’ve got some really great accommodation options available. Find amazing deals on apartments, especially if you’re traveling with a few friends and can split a place. Why both jamming into a crammed hostel dorm in Barcelona for 30 Euro each when you can rent your own place for pretty much the same price! Plus you’ll feel like a baller with your own apartment to chill in!
Yotel/ YotelAIR – Yotel is the place to stay if you’re visiting a city and want to be keep things budget friendly while avoiding hostels. These space efficient hotels remove the “unnecessary extras” that hotels add on as an excuse to mark up prices. With features like adjustable smart beds that fold up into a couch, under the bed luggage storage and entertainment console built directly into the wall, no space is left unused here. Still, the rooms somehow feel spacious. Yotel offers competitive rates in cities like New York, San Francisco, Singapore and Boston, all notoriously expensive for hotels. YotelAIR, their airport hotels, are located in London, Amsterdam and Paris. I stayed at their London Heathrow hotel for an overnight layover and absolutely loved my room. With a big comfy bed, rainforest shower head and flatscreen TV, I could forget that I was in an airport and feel like I was in a luxury London hotel.
Best Tech Sites and Apps for Travel
Let’s be real… we’re living in a pretty tech heavy era! So it’s no surprise that the travel industry has also seen the impact of increased technology and how travelers interact with it. You’d be hard pressed to find a hostel in the middle of Peru that didn’t have wifi, so more and more travelers are staying connected while on the road.
Plus, with the growth of remote working while traveling, now we’re seeing even more people ditch their 9-5 office cubicle for a beach side bungalow in Bali… if they can. Here is a list of our favorite tech websites and apps to help make your travels smoother.
SurfEasy – Did you know that some countries around the world the government bann websites like Facebook, as well as apps like Snapchat, Twitter and Instagram? Yep, true story! Unfortunately not all countries enjoy the civil liberties of the West, and Internet censorship can be a real pain to stay in touch with friends and family back home.
Not only that, but all your Internet activity and data can be open for other people to track, monitor and use for their own personal gain. It’s pretty messed up! Thankfully for you there are services called VPNs (virtual private networks ) that allow you to bypass the tracking and restrictions by tricking the Internet to make it think you’re someone else. It’s more technical than that, but all you need to know is that it works GREAT! SurfEasy is an awesome app/program that you can use on your computer, phone and tablet to make sure you can always access blocked websites and keep your data private and secure!
Blacklane Private Car Service – As much as we love traveling, neither of us really love to fly. The stress of getting to the airport in time, shuffling through long security lines and then being herded on a crowded plane just isn’t fun. So when we can eliminate even one of those experiences, we’ll do it. Blacklane’s car service not only gets you to the airport in plenty of time, but having a private car means you don’t have to lug your bags on public transportation and can instead kick back and have a nap.
RVshare – If you’ve ever dreamt of cruising around the United States in an RV, you can finally make that dream come true. Before you invest in purchasing one, try renting a van or RV to see how you like life on the road. RVShare is the largest, most trusted and wide-ranging inventory in peer-to-peer RV rentals. If you’re thinking about going on a road trip, camping, or renting an RV for a special event, RVshare makes the whole process simple and fun. They have a good selection of quality vehicles so you don’t have to worry about getting any lemons! From large vans to full service homes on wheels, you can choose exactly whichever fits your travel style best.
Other Awesome Travel Resources
World Nomads Travel Insurance – When it comes to traveling the world, or traveling your own backyard, never leave home without travel insurance. It’s a small price to pay for peace of mind, and an even smaller price to pay if you end up having to need it. That’s why we choose, use and recommend World Nomads travel insurance for all your travel trips. Not only do they provide the most competitive prices, but they also understand traveler’s needs.
In 2014 when we accidentally ‘misplaced’ our camera at an Indonesia airport it was travel insurance that saved the day and helped replace it. Even though we had never used it in the past, that moment right there paid for all the years that we’d been paying for it. If you’re traveling with computers or expensive cameras it really isn’t worth the risk to go without insurance, not to mention having to pay out of pocket for any unfortunate trips to the hospital.
BonAppetour – Similar style platform to AirBnB, but with food! Don’t spend hours pouring over Yelp reviews and TripAdvisor forums for the best local restaurants when they’re all conveniently compiled right here for you. And what better way to experience the connection of food and culture then by visiting a locals own house for a home cooked meal! Want to give it a shot? Click here to get $15 credit towards your first BonAppetour experience!
iVisa Passport and Visa Services – Don’t get caught out without a visa when arriving in a new country, or it might be the shortest holiday you’ve ever had. Whether you’re looking for visa information, or looking to organize a visa, iVisa is the perfect resource to get you started. Simply search from whatever country you’re from, to whatever country you’re going, and find all the information you need!
Don’t Forget To Move would like to disclose that some of the links on this page help provide a little financial support to our site, at absolutely no extra cost to you. We would never endorse a product or service that we didn’t fully support or use ourselves, that’s our guarantee. If you’d like to help our site even more, please come and check out our Support Our Blog page with further details.