3.29.2007

An Overwhelming Heaping of Travel Help

I have recently become an amateur travel agent, as I have been planning Eric and my upcoming European travels. So far we will be venturing to Rome, Naples, the island of Capri, Girona (Spain), and Paris. Yes, Paris. And this weekend we will also be traveling, via car, with some exchange student friends to the Basque Country (Pais Vasco) to see the Guggenheim in Bilbao and the gorgeous beaches of San Sebastian.

So, having been elbow deep in search engines and travel sites for the past week and a half, I thought I'd share the wealth a little. Several of you are planning trips out across the pond to Europe, and I hope this will prove useful and time saving. And if you aren't planning a European vacation, maybe you should be.

And in case you don't make it to the end of this exhaustive list, I have a request. It would be a great help if you all could share any travel advice or travel websites that I might have left out. Also, suggestions of where to stay, eat or play for any of the above mentioned destinations would be very welcome. Or even other European travel suggestions for the future. Many thanks and happy traveling!


THE LIST
(Enjoy!)

General Travel Search:
- Travelocity
http://travelocity.com
- UK Expedia (can be helpful – but be aware that everything is listed in British Pounds - 1₤ = $1.90) http://www.expedia.co.uk
- Alsa (a Spanish high speed train service)
http://www2.alsa.es/portal/index.asp?lang=en
- Kayak (a pretty good search engine for everything – it does a searches of other sites)
http://www.kayak.com
- Site 59 (this has fantastic deals – they are all last minute, however, and from the U.S.)
http://www.site59.com


Airfare (most also have search engines for hotels and cars as well):
- Air Berlin
http://www.airberlin.com
- AirFare WatchDog (a reliable source of fares and specials)
http://www.airfarewatchdog.com
- AirFare WatchDog’s Blog (with the most recent air fare specials)
http://www.airfarewatchdog.com/AirfareWatchBlog
- Bravo Fly
http://www.bravofly.com
- Cheap To Travel
http://booking.cheaptotravel.com
- Clickair
http://www.clickair.com
- EasyJet
http://www.easyjet.com
- RyanAir (I’ve used this one several times – the low fare search in the left hand column is great – it let’s you search up to 20 days after the date you want to fly and up to 20 days before you want to return so you can see what’s most affordable – just be aware of extra taxes and luggage fees)
http://www.bookryanair.com
- SkyEurope
http://www1.skyeurope.com
- Wizz Air (for travel to Eastern Europe)
http://wizzair.com
- Transavia (for travel to Amsterdam)
http://www.transavia.com
- Spainair
http://www.spanair.com


Hotels:
- Venere (probably my favorite – you can see where in the city your hotel actually is and instantaneously change your search criteria – AND usually the best price)
http://www.venere.com
- Late Rooms (interesting deals on higher end places)
http://www.laterooms.com
- Booking.com
http://www.booking.com
- Priceline Europe (pretty much the same results as Booking.com, above)
http://www.priceline-europe.com
- Hotel Club
http://www.hotelclub.net
- Otel.com
http://www.otel.com
- Secret Places (interesting places, missed by the general search engines)
http://www.secretplaces.com
- Ebookers
http://hotels.ebookers.com


Hostels (for those of you wanting single beds, or the cheapest accommodation)
- Hostelz
http://www.hostelz.com
- Hostel Bookers
http://www.hostelbookers.com
- Gomio
http://www.gomio.com
- Hostel World (associated with RyanAir)
http://www.hostelworld.com
- European Hostel Guide (more informative than practical)
http://www.europeanhostelguide.com


For those of you wanting to get a head start on Barcelona:
- Barcelona’s Tourist Guide
http://www.barcelona-tourist-guide.com
- The website of Barcelona
http://www.bcn.es/english


If you want to learn a little Spanish for free before you travel (or other languages, as well):
- BBC Spanish
http://www.bbc.co.uk/languages/spanish
- BBC Languages
http://www.bbc.co.uk/languages
- Coffee Break Spanish (a great podcast that starts out super simple and runs in about 15 minute segments)
http://coffeebreakspanish.typepad.com

General Travel Help:
- Rick Steves’ Travel (the guru of travel – great tips on sites, packing, etc…)
http://www.ricksteves.com
- Frommer’s Travel Guides
http://frommers.com
- Currency Converter
http://finance.yahoo.com/currency
- Michelin (this site has great maps, plus hotels, although these are a little spendier)
http://www.viamichelin.co.uk/viamichelin/gbr/tpl/hme/MaHomePage.htm

1 comment:

said...

Thanks for the info! <3