gif: airplane

anonymous asked:

Hi, I loooove this blog and thought maybe you could help me? I've never planned a out of state trip before and have saved up a couple grand to go visit Philadelphia in hopefully January/February of 2018. How do I go about finding the cheapest plane tickets and hotel for a one week stay? (I've also never been on a plane)

So my boyfriend and I are interested in taking a trip to Philadelphia sometime next summer. It would most likely be an overnight trip unless we can stay for 2 days max. We know for a fact we’d take an Amtrak track from Boston to there. Any tips on how to plan for a trip and how to save for a trip ahead of time?            

Woo! Everyone is traveling to Philadelphia! I hope that you all have fun trips!

Plane Travel Tips

  • for cheapest fare, book at least 3 months in advance. If this is impossible, one month is generally okay, but you won’t get the best fares!
  • try using Google Flights to search for airlines that will match your desired dates
  • then go to the airline’s website and book using their system
  • if you plan travel a lot, you can create an account with that airline so that you can start accruing points!
  • flights that have layovers or stops are usually much cheaper, so if you’re not in a rush, you could look for a trip with a stop. Just make sure you have enough time to get from the gate of your first plane to the gate of your next plane in the time you have for the layover! If you do this, your bags should automatically go with you to the final destination. 
  • check into your flight 24hrs ahead of time

Train Travel Tips

  • figure out which trains go where you’re going. Amtrack and Metrolink are the most common.
  • book early! I’d say at least a month in advance. This is especially important for trains because as far as I know there are no assigned seats

Finding a Hotel or Place to Stay (one night or a week)

  • there are a few general types of accommodations:
    • big name hotel (i.e. Hilton, Mariott, DoubleTree, etc)
    • small boutique hotel (varies by location)
    • motel (Motel 6, Super8)
    • AirBnB
    • hostel
  • you can often find deals on big name hotels by looking at sites like Hotwire, Kayak, and Expedia
  • Small boutique hotels are going to vary widely, as will AirBnBs. But, it might give you a more homey feel.
  • AirBnB is probably great for the one week trip, you might be able to find a better deal than a hotel!
  • Check reviews on yelp and other review websites before booking!
  • Don’t put your luggage on the bed and inspect the bed/mattresses just in case of bugs.
  • I would avoid staying in motels or hostels unless you really have to save money! You never know, especially in big cities, these can be pretty grungy.

Planning and Saving for Trips Ahead of Time

  • figure out approximately how much you’ll be spending on airfare/transport and  hotel/accommodations
  • don’t forget ground transportation! Will you be using Lyft, taxis, buses?
  • research some restaurants you want to go to and estimate the price points! Are you going to eat out for all meals, or will you eat things like cereal for breakfast in the hotel room?
  • read reviews for everything! Check tripadvisor or other websites to make sure you know which areas are safer for tourists and which areas are not.
  • you can make a detailed schedule of everything you want to do, or you can be spontaneous!
  • Make sure to give yourself time to rest and sleep! Trips are fun, but they can be exhausting if you’re running around constantly!
  • Don’t forget to tell your credit card company you’re going out of state for however long
  • Don’t forget to bring: weather appropriate clothes (it’s cold in Philly in winter and hot and muggy in summer!!), cash, ID, umbrella, phone chargers, electronics, snacks etc!

Have fun and be safe!– Mimi

flickr

Goodyear FG-1D Corsair by S F photographs
Via Flickr:
The Museum of Flight in Seattle, Washington