the reason i love to planning my trip itineraries ahead is because it leaves room for spontaneity! here are the resources i use in my planning process:

i depend on my iPhone so much when i travel. here are my go-to apps:

  • expense trackingSplitwise is a must if traveling in a group.
  • wifi finder—i use WiFi Map and SpeedSpot to stay connected while on-the-go.
  • phone calls, instant messaging, SMSWhatsAppSkype, Google Hangouts and Google Voice allow me to communicate with friends and family back home very easily.
  • photos—just like millions of other users, i publish my photos using Instagram. but first, i edit them with Snapseed.
  • maps—i favor Google Maps because i can save the places i plan to see ahead of time. saved locations appear as a star on your map if you’re signed in with a google account. also, on the iPhone 6, Google Maps works over a cell network without using data as long as the map itself is cached in the phone’s memory. so, while online, pull up the map you need, zoom in and out to get full coverage, and voila! you’ll have access even without a data plan.
  • language—there are plenty of apps to help you with learning vocabulary for your language of choice, such as Duolingo. regardless, Google Translate is handy for looking up any word of phrase you might need.
  • conversion—i use Globe Convert to convert currency and measurements.
  • tipping customs—i hate not knowing local tipping customs! use Globe Tipper to help you leave the right amount of tip as you travel.
  • travel itineraries—i’m old school and like to keep my travel notes directly in my Google Calendar or in a document. Google Drive and Evernote work great.
  • entertainment—i subscribe to Spotify Premium and Netflix since they also work outside of the US (even without a VPN in some places). i like having the Kindle Reader app to help manage boredom during travel delays.

my airline of choice is American Airlines. here’s how I earn bonus miles, even when i’m not flying:

  • AAdvantage eShopping—originate your online shopping here and earn miles for your purchases
  • AAdvantage Dining—register your credit card here and earn airline miles as you dine out
  • credit card—after receiving the umpteenth letter with a 50,000 bonus miles offer, I gave in and signed up
  • promotions—American Airlines offers bonus miles for rental car, hotel, and specific flight bookings
  • other—earn miles on the airline of your choice by booking your hotel on Rocketmiles

good luck planning your trip!

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