Welcome to the travel resources section, here I’m to provide you with a bunch of my favourite and useful links when it comes to backpacking and travelling in general. Whether it’s planning, hostel booking, travel insurance, website hosting – it’s all listed here.
Hostelworld – These are the guys I mostly use when backpacking and booking dorm rooms. Comprehensive listing of hostels, great reviews system and a funky dashboard full of cool stuff.
Hostelbookers – The second biggest hostel booking website. Competes with Hostelworld by offering no booking fees.
WWOOF – A more alternative way of travelling. The WWOOF community allows you to work on a (generally) rural property in exchange for food and board. I’ve had a few great experiences doing this and is a superb way to see a bit of local life.
CouchSurfing – A community that bases itself around its members offering up their couches for people to ‘surf’ (sleep) – and then going surfing themselves. I’m a member of this one and it’s a great community to be a part of. Newer members might want to consider building up a reputation as a host before heading off and hoping for free accommodation. It’s also a social concept, so you are expected to share/learn/teach about each other’s culture and life.
Airbnb – A cool concept where you can book a room/house/apartment from a ‘host’ who is generally an individual willing to rent out their place short term or provide you with a room in their house for a fee. Prices are much more reasonable than booking a hotel and you’ll find spots in almost every main city of the world.
Wimdu – This is Airbnb’s main competitor, a German based company that offers a directory of rooms/self sufficient apartments or houses around the globe that can be rented from a host.
Roomarama – Similar again, however seems to have many hotel rooms actually listed (as well as individual hosts) and seems to cater heavily towards families, working professionals and business travellers.
HotelsCombined – Compare & Save with this great hotel search engine. Combines a lot of the big boys together (Expedia, Booking, Hotels & more) and allows you visibility of them all together so you can find the cheapest rate.
Flight Booking Engines & Aggregators:
Kayak – A solid aggregator that pulls together various flight booking engines so you can get a decent idea of what’s available for your route and dates.
SkyScanner – I find it a bit easier to use than Kayak, but do use both of them as part of your flight research to ensure you are covering all your flighty bases.
Cheapflights UK – CheapFlights is a pioneering meta flight search aggregator that includes real-time fare alerts, Smart Value search, and a simple design that is personalised to each user.
Drungli – An extremely simple to use interface that will tell you quickly what flights and how much they cost.
Momondo – A comprehensive flight aggregator, worth checking out with the rest to get the best flight/price for your needs.
AirNinja – This one is nice as it will link you to the budget airlines that complete the route as well as to Expedia/Kayak for an aggregator search so you can easily compare the two.
Budget Airlines in Europe
EasyJet – A solid budget option with many flights all around Europe.
Ryan Air – Generally a little cheaper than EasyJet (but it depends).
Wizz Air – Another budget airline to check out for cheap flights.
Lufthansa – German owned and operated budget airline in Europe.
Transavia – Has it’s head office in The Netherlands. I personally like it because it has lots of flights out of Rotterdam.
Budget Airlines in Asia
AirAsia – I love these guys. You can’t really beat their prices, especially around Asia, and I’ve never once had a problem with their service or flights. They are a Malaysian company so many flights will go through their base hub of Kuala Lumpur. For Aussies or travellers near Brisbane or the Gold Coast – they offer a great deal on flights to Kuala Lumpur from the Gold Coast airport.
Rail & Bus In Europe:
RailEurope – From my experience these are the cheapest guys to buy European country/global rail tickets. Do your research for the best price!
EURail – Another company that offers European rail tickets.
EuroLines – If cheap is your only concern, buses are normally the way to go (unless you can get a special on a rail ticket). This is the company that operates throughout Europe.
Mega Bus UK – New guy on the block (in Europe at any rate) – often offering some crazy cheap deals if you’re into budget bus travel.
Busabout – Offers set bus loop trips around Europe with a get on/off as you like system.
Orange Ways – Based in Eastern Europe and with many routes in that area, these guys offer cheap bus travel.
Travelling with a Medical Condition – This is an excellent guide from InsuranceWith.com for people who have a medical or physical condition, but still want to travel and see the world. It includes many useful tips like what to bring, vaccinations, where to go (for travellers with disabilities), and many other useful information for travelling the world with a medical condition.
Kathmandu (AUS) – This is an Australian store. I have one of their packs and some of their clothes and it’s all extremely high quality stuff. I’ve had my pack for years and it’s as durable as the day I brought it, I have no affiliation with this company, I just like their backpacks!
REI (US) – I know a lot of American travellers & backpackers recommend this as a place to buy a backpack and other travel gear.
London Tube Map – You’ll get one of these for free at the first Tube or Rail station you get to in London, but it’s always fun to look at it before you arrive too!
Paris Metro Map – I think I like the Paris Metro better than the London Tube system, but they’re both pretty awesome. Here’s the map!
Ultimate Guide to Travel Insurance – nice little guide on travel insurance and a good “compare” aggregator to get some quick quotes and figure out what you’re up for.
Hostgator – I use these guys to host this travel website. They have a great live chat system and are pretty efficient.
WordPress – Fantastic free open source software for building websites. This site is built on self hosted WordPress software. I would recommend it for anyone wanting to start a travel blog or site.
DropBox – An online cloud storage system, perfect for storing back ups of your site whilst on the road. It’s not really large enough to store lots of photos (unless you get the paid version, which I don’t use) – but it’s great for word documents and other low size files.