Top 10 Travel Planning Tips

Here are a few quick tips to help you plan your next vacation:
  1. Start a folder, binder, notebook - whatever works best - to keep all your itineraries, brochures, coupons, reservation confirmations, directions, maps, receipts, etc. all together.
  2. Start mentioning your trip and destination to friends, family and coworkers. They might have already been there and might have some invaluable tips or personal connections.
    • Visiting a friend? They might know about special tips regarding public transport, airline shuttles, baggage claim secrets or other tricks when arriving in the airport.
  3. When booking a hotel or rental car, be sure to ask about discount rates and membership deals (Diner's Club, AAA, frequent flyers, credit card rewards, etc.).
  4. Visit your destination's travel and tourism bureau web site to learn more about your destination. Tourism sites will often have a list of suggested events, attractions, hotel recommendations and so on.

    WHN EXPERT TIP: Get Your "Info Pack" Early!

    Some tourism bureaus have an "info pack" they can mail to you. These can include info guides, maps, coupons and event calendars. Be sure to request yours early - it may take a few weeks to arrive.

  5. Use an online search engine to find out more about your destination.

    WHN EXPERT TIP: Read Your Destinations Local Newspaper

    Find your destination's newspaper web site to read about the latest restaurant reviews and what's going on around town.

  6. Head to the library a week or so before you leave. Libraries usually have guidebooks and maps that you can check out. Bring these along with you on your trip!

    WHN STAFF TIP: Entertainment and Learning!

    While you're there, check out audio books, CDs, DVDs to take along with for entertainment!

    WHN STAFF TIP: Learning a Language

    If you need to learn a new language for your trip you can also check out language phrasebooks, dictionaries and audio lessons at the library. You can also download free language podcasts from a podcast directory like iTunes.

  7. Print copies of online maps of your destination and directions you'll need.
  8. Make a list of your hotels, restaurants and any must-see attractions (museums, parks, stores, tours, etc.) you'd like to visit. Jot down the:
    • name of hotel/restaurant/attraction
    • website address
    • physical address
    • phone number
    • hours and days of operation
    • cost
    • any other important details

    WHN STAFF TIP: A Copy For Your Family

    Make a copy of these details and leave one copy with friends or family. Why? So they can contact you in the event of the emergency.

  9. Be sure to print, fill in and save your WhatHappensNow.com packing list well in advance. Why? It'll help you remember to buy those extra items (batteries, extra film, travel-size shampoo, etc.) before you need to head to the airport or hit the road.
    • Remember to add items or subtract items depending on the weather conditions at your destination and depending on the length of your trip.

    You'll need Acrobat Reader to fill out and save the form to your desktop. Don't have the latest version of Acrobat Reader? It's FREE - download it here.
  10. HAVE FUN!!

    Updated: 05/2009