If you’re wondering what resources travel bloggers use, you’ve come to the right place for this travel blogger’s travel gear page. You will find here my absolute favorite products and services I use, from cheap travel adapters to high-quality rolling suitcases.
These are products that I either use and can recommend based on my experience, or I know at least 5 people that don’t know each other that have expressed their recommendations to me. This is mostly true for services related to flights, as I am not legally allowed to use some of them myself due to my job. But when I book trips for other people or look into other offers, I still use these same tips and products.
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Best apps to find discounts
Of course, you can find discounted offers in almost all apps and websites nowadays, but the apps listed below are specifically aimed at this. When it comes to choosing accommodation, the price you pay is usually what you get (unless you book last minute, as even expensive hotels avoid empty rooms).
But when it comes to flights, the prices can vary quite a bit, as there are so many factors involved in the pricing strategy, from offer and demand to airport tax and various other estimations. The tools mentioned below are specifically designed to offer you better deals for the exact same services as the full prices, so check them up and see if they work for you as well.
Best apps to find cheap transportation options
To find the best prices, aggregators are your best bet in 90% of the time. Since they compare prices for hundreds of options, you get to have a nice overview of your solutions for various services, from booking flights to renting a car.
Still, don’t forget to always book from the airline/rental car place. Every aggregator shows you 3rd party tools as well, but choose the option for “direct” every time. It will help you a great deal if you get into any kind of trouble, like having a delayed or canceled flight, or if you want to adjust your reservation.
A nice combo of an aggregator and a cashback app is WayAway, as you can get money back for various travel-related expenses, like flights, accommodation, and activities. These are expenses that you will make anyway, so why not get some money back at the end of the trip?
Best accommodation apps
These two are the classics frankly. I know there are a few more that people use, but I haven’t used any of the others, so I cannot recommend them. I will always recommend Agoda over Booking for trips to Asia, as it usually has better prices for the same accommodation.
And, of course, one of my budget travel tips is to always check the hotel’s page directly. Sometimes you can score nice prices like this, or get special perks like free breakfast or airport transportation as well.
Best places to book activities
When it comes to activities, I have been a great fan of free walking tours for a long time. This is a nice way to get to know a city when you have just arrived, and you get to know some non-touristy places from a local.
But when it comes to actually visiting landmarks, both GetYourGuide and Viator are great options for you. I use both as they have different activities, and some don’t even cover specific destinations at all. I love the fact that they usually offer some sort of cashback options, so you get to reuse them for cheap the next time.
The GoCity pass was great when I made my all-time dream come true and visited NYC in the fall of 2022. What I love the most about it is that you have two options: either get a pass for a number of days (from 3 to 10, your choice) or for a number of landmarks! This is amazing for people with a slower rhythm like us, especially as we had our toddler on the trip. These two options offer plenty of flexibility and ensure that you actually get to use the pass enough to benefit you.
Best travel insurance services
Some years ago, I used to think travel insurance is for losers. Then, we went on a relaxing vacation with our baby in Spain, and spent half of our time there in a hospital, as he had an infection. Luckily, we were traveling within the EU and had these expenses covered by our European health insurance. But now I know I won’t ever be this “lucky” ever again.
I would never leave home today without SafetyWing. It’s so easy to set up and use, and the price is about 1/3 of everything else on the market. You can even add more days to it if you plan to stay longer and children are insured for free. I love them so much I have written an entire SafetyWing review, and I definitely advise you to read it.
AirHelp is a different type of insurance. It’s a way for you to suffer less if you’ll have delayed or missed flights. And let’s be honest, it has happened, it does happen, and it will continue to happen again. So check them out if you have had a delayed or missed flight in the last 3 years, or get a subscription to be sure you’re covered all the time.
Best travel apps and services
These smaller things might not seem important now, but when you compare the experience we had before having them with the one we can have right now, there’s really no comparison. With Priority Pass, you can enjoy a relaxing lounge before every trip, without paying for a business class ticket.
The other resources are just nice to have, but really cool, you know? You can use a VPN to protect your data while away, a DNA kit to get to know yourself better (and maybe travel to your ancestors’ home countries) and a language learning app is a cool way to prepare for any trip. Check them out below!
Best places for travel gifts
If you need to buy gifts for the travelers in your life, or maybe give someone a hint about what to get you (I know, I’ve been there), then you need this. Etsy is my go-to place for all the weird stuff you can ever want. I have full posts about jewelry made from airplane parts, aviation-themed office furniture, and fantastic travel gifts that you can use as inspiration for your next Christmas list.
Tinggly is the absolute best travel gift anyone can ever give or receive. It has quite a few gift boxes that the gift giver can choose from, and each box contains a few hundred options for activities the gift receiver can enjoy. Better yet, they don’t expire, so the receiver can use them whenever it suits them. And, even better, they also plant trees for every gift box sold. What else could we possibly want?
Best travel gear
Now, I’m not going to go into too much detail about each item, as I’m sure no one wants to listen to me talking about my favorite rolling suitcase (but you can read my Samsonite review instead) or my favorite backpack (again, I have a backpack review as well).
But did you know I don’t own or use a camera? All of my pictures (the good ones, I mean) are done straight with my iPhone, and they are not edited at all after downloading, mostly because I’m very bad at it. I also love my Active Noise Cancelation headphones, I think they improve the crappity factor of a long-haul flight by 50% (so it’s 50% less crappy, to be precise), which is not that bad.
Small items like a travel plug adapter and a luggage scale can really improve your traveling game as well. I cannot even estimate how much we’ve got out of our $20 plug adapter by now, but I assume it has paid its value tenfold by now. Check out all the other cool items below!
Chilly’s water bottle
Travel plug adapter
Best free(mium) apps
Let’s be honest here, do we really have to pay for everything? I mean, do you need a fancy app for maps when you have GoogleMaps on your phone already? I use it quite often and I even have map collections to sell in my store, as people find them useful and have asked for them from me, but the app itself is free and works absolutely great.
Trello is also one of my favorite tools, as it keeps me organized and on track when planning a trip. You can use my Trello Travel Template if you wish, but otherwise, the app is free and quite powerful, and it definitely offers enough functionality for your needs in the free version.
DeepL is the new kid on the block when it comes to translation services, and I think they have surpassed Google Translate by a lot by now. It does come with the downside that it has fewer languages than Google Translate, and it doesn’t offer you the option to scan the text, but the accuracy of the translation is unmatched.