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We have been traveling the world extensively for 24+ years and have had a professional travel blogging business since 2010. We have one of the biggest travel blogs in the world and are a trusted resource for travel advice and inspiration.
The US Government awarded us Green Cards because we are at the top of our field and contribute significantly to tourism in the USA.
We have come to rely on a few trusted travel brands and websites for booking our own accommodation, flights, rental cars, tours, and travel insurance.
We always start our travel research with these well-known and trusted booking sites listed below. Bookmark this page and then come to it whenever you are ready to book a trip! It’s all the best places for booking in the one handy place.
- Booking.com has a variety of accommodation types -hotels, apartments, resorts, motels, vacation homes, villas, lodges, cabins, even campsites – they’re more than just hotels and we love how simple their website is to use! We love to use it for the free cancellation on most rooms and a best-price guarantee.
- Hotels.com has a variety of accommodation types. A big reason for booking your accommodation through them is that once you have booked ten nights through them you get a free night in a hotel.
- Expedia.com Is great for booking hotels, airfares and more. You can book packages that include all of the above and even tours. They have special member prices through their One Key Travel rewards program, which I’ve used to find deals before.
- VRBO: We use VRBO for standalone vacation rentals. They have more robust search capabilities than Airbnb but comparable prices. They are also part of Expedia’s One Key Travel rewards program.
- HostelWorld: Backpackers and budget travelers don’t have to miss out! With over 16,500 hostels in 180 countries, there’s always room for a new adventure! Easy to find and book a hostel deal!
- Trusted Housesitters: Discover free & unique homestays around the world, in exchange for caring for adorable pets. This is also a great service to use if you are traveling and need someone to look after your pets for free. We used this for our 4-week trip to Europe to have someone look after our two kittens and home. It was brilliant!
- We always start our flights search with Skyscanner, flight comparison site that is simple to use and fast. It searches millions of flights on over a thousand airlines, including budget carriers.
- We always check our mileage points programs to see if we can find flight deals through them.
- Going is a membership site (free and paid) that will help you find flight deals. Most deals are 40-90% off normal prices with great itineraries from the best airlines.
- WayAway is an innovative flight aggregator that features the WayAway Plus membership plan for cashback on travel deals
- Priority Pass. We have a membership through our Capital Venture One card. It’s worth considering purchasing a membership if you don’t have this card. Each membership entitles you to bring one guest into the airport lounge. Since both Craig and I have a membership, we can bring our two daughter iin on family trips. If you fly regularly you can save a lot of money on airport food as it’s all inside the lounge for free!
Getting Around: Book Rental Cars, Buses & Train Travel
- Discover Cars has the best booking platform for finding deals that is user friendly and backed by great customer service. They have free cancellation policies and no hidden fees. I use them regularly for my car hire and love them.
- RentalCars.com is another car rental comparison site we’ve found great deals on. They have no hidden fees, a price match guarantee and 48-hour cancellation policies.
- In Europe you can use or Trainline to book your tickets. The European rail passes are another option for multiple destinations. I’ve heard from others it’s not as good as it used to be but still might save you money.
- Check Rail Europe for price comparisons and easy booking.
- Omio has more than 1,000 trusted travel partners across trains, buses, flights, ferries, and airport transfers, so that you can focus on the journey. Mostly for European travel
- Busbud helps you find cheap bus and train tickets around the world
- Flixbus is for booking cheap bus tickets in the US
- 12Go Train, Bus, Ferry, Transfer & Flight Tickets Booking in Asia & Worldwide
- BikesBooking.com is an online booking service for motorcycles, scooters, quads, and bicycles all over the world.
Globus, Cosmos & Avalon Waterways Group Trip
For small group tours with flexibility and a focus on supporting local, we highly recommend the Globus Family of Brands which include Cosmos and Avalon Waterways for river cruising. We are long term partners of theirs and have experienced their tours through Jordan, Northern California, Ireland & a Danube River Cruise.
All have been exceptional, and we’ve secured a special discount just for our readers below.
GLOBUS DISCOUNT JUST FOR YOU!
We’ve secured an exclusive reader discount: Save $100 per person on select 2023 and 2024 Globus and Avalon Waterway Vacations. Use the code: YTRAVEL when booking online at the Globus and Avalon Waterways websites, by calling Globus and Avalon Waterways directly, or booking with a preferred Travel Advisor. Terms & Conditions.
Tours & Attractions
- Get Your Guide offers many local tours and attractions in destinations around the world. They have the lowest prices, guaranteed — no booking fees or hidden charges. You can pre-book tickets and skip the line at top attractions and cancel up to 24 hours before.
- Tiqets are another great option for tours and attractions, skip the line tickets and more. I always use these if I can’t find the right time and tour on Get your Guide.
- Viator also offer amazing tours, attractions and tickets in destinations around the world. You can reserve now and pay later so you can book your spot but keep your options open!
- For small group tours in Europe, we highly recommend Take Walks (includes Devour Tours) and LivTours. We used all three a lot on our Europe trip and loved it.
- We cannot recommend Devour Tours highly enough. These European and North America food tours are all about supporting and preserving local culture and food traditions.
- Go City attraction passes can help you save money on top attractions, tours and experiences, plus hidden gems all hand-picked by local experts. They’re available for cities all over the world.
- Sightseeing Passes are also another favorite for saving money on attractions. They also have quirky attractions, local tours and discounts on restaurants and shopping. We saved a lot using a NYC Sightseeing Pass, and a New Orleans Sightseeing Pass.
- City Pass is another attraction pass that will save you in major cities. Their card is usually limited to just the main attractions in top US cities, which may be better than the previous two cards. It just depends on what you want to see and do.
- Undercover Tourist offer theme park official attraction tickets at discounted prices. They help you save time and money on your trip to Disneyland California, Walt Disney World Florida, Universal Orlando, Universal Hollywood, and many more attractions. No hidden fees and skip the line!
- TicketNetwork – TicketNetwork is an online exchange where sellers list tickets to sports, theater, and concert events around the world.
- Ticketmaster: The place to get most tickets for concerts, sports, theater performances, comedy acts and more.
- EatWith: A great way to connect with local community joining unique, immersive culinary experiences with hand-selected hosts from the comfort of their own home.
- ToursbyLocals: As the name suggests, you can receive unique and personalized private tours with local guides in any destination.
eSims & VPN
- Airalo If you have an unlocked phone, this is the best place to purchase an eSim before traveling to a foreign country. They have very competitive rates and will be cheaper than purchasing sims upon arrival, our using international roaming fees.
- NordVPN is the best service to use if requiring a secure VPN when traveling – especially useful if traveling to China.
Buy Travel Insurance
We always say “if you can’t afford travel insurance, then you can’t afford to travel”. Once you have booked your flights, it’s important to protect your investment by getting travel insurance?
- Safety Wing: is travel medical insurance for nomads. They cover people from all over the world, while outside their home country.
- Etka: Travel Insurance for worldwide travel. Easy to use with comparable rates and instant polices. Great for those longer term, nomadic, and work abroad travelers. We believe its an essential travel purchase.
- Allianz Travel Insurance. We have annual travel insurance polices with Allianz. Really worth getting an annual policy if you travel frequently.
- Visitors Coverage: which provides travel insurance for millions of global travelers in over 175 countries. They are the largest provider of visitor’s insurance for inbound travel to the U.S.
- World Nomads travel insurance has been designed by travelers for travelers, with coverage for more than 150 activities as well as emergency medical, lost luggage, trip cancellation and more.