Using the right travel sites is important to booking a great trip. You will want to find a site you can trust to book the cheapest flights, tours, accommodation, and anything else travel related. I have compiled all of my favorite travel sites that I use to research and book flights for you to use to book your next adventure.
Every site listed is a site I have used to book trips to over 95 countries and I recommend them to any traveler who asks me for my favorites.
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Travel Hacking Tips
Credit card sign-ups are one of the fastest ways to earn miles. You don’t need to rely on them but you should know your options.
A full list of all my favorite travel credit cards. Sign up bonuses will quickly earn you a free flight.
Which card is right for you? Pick the perfect travel credit card.
Travel credit cards often require excellent credit but luckily there are still proven methods to travel hack without perfect credit.
My book will show you how I save thousands of dollars every year on flights around the world. Learn how to start travel hacking and book free flights and hotels on your next trip.
A site that shows you new ways to earn miles daily to book free flights. They guarantee one free flight for every member.
Read my guide on how to get started travel hacking.
There is more than one way to earn miles and points. Check out this complete list of 22 ways to earn miles and points through every day methods.
Learn how to hack a flight without using miles or points but simply finding the best deal every single time.
Booking Cheap Flights
I never search one and done as Kayak suggest. Always check a few sites before booking your flight. Tracking fares by setting up fare alerts is a great way to track airfare and book the cheapest flight.
Airfare Deals and Tracking Tools
A handy site for finding great deals on flights and tracking fares using alerts.The daily newsletter will send you flight deals from the departure airport of your choice.
I never book a seat on the plane without checking it out on SeatGuru first. SeatGuru has seat maps for every plane and flight. Read whether the seat fully reclines or
ExpertFlyer is handy for snagging a great seat on the plane and booking award travel. It’s a great tool for savvy travelers.
The flight deal has a great daily newsletter that alerts you of the best deals to cities world wide.
Whether you prefer luxury hotels, hostels, couchsurfing, or vacation rentals I am here to help you book the best deal. These are my favorite sites when I book a night anywhere in the world.
My Favorite Booking Sites
A product of Airfarewatchdog, Hotelwatchdog finds best-value Hotels for your stay.
A great site for booking a hostel with plenty of reliable reviews and photos.
Vacation Rentals By Owner is a great option if you want to negotiate the rental price. Negotiate a price for your rental directly with the owner. Many are willing to come down at least 10% and it never hurts to ask.
A great site to find the perfect vacation rental. It’s safe and easy.
Book rooms, apartments, or entire homes around the world. Prices are set and booking is simple. This is one of my favorite booking sites.
Look after homes and animals around the world for free. Find owners lookers for reliable house sitters to watch their homes for a few weeks or a few months. It’s a great resource for long-term travelers.
More tips on Accommodation
Airbnb has 5-star villas for rent but it also has dirt cheap rooms in nice homes for rent all around the world. If a hostel isn’t your thing try renting a room or even a small studio for a budget price. Use this link to get $25 off your stay on Airbnb. If you already have an account read how to get another $25 off.
Hotel Tonight is a great app for savvy travelers. The way it works is by finding unsold rooms and offering them to you at a greatly reduced nightly rate.
If you want $25 off your next booking use my invite code: CJOHNSTON89 when you sign up on the app. You can then invite friends for another $25 to pass on the savings.
A great site for booking a hostel with plenty of reliable reviews and photos.
Couchsurfing is a worldwide community of like-minded travelers that are looking to connect around the world. Locals offer a couch, a bed or even a room to travelers for free. This is a great way to gain local knowledge and make friends around the world. Learn how to stay safe Couchsurfing.
Built for students to find the best flights, hotels, hostels, and tours all over the world.
Look after homes and animals around the world for free. Find owners lookers for reliable house sitters to watch their homes for a few weeks or a few months. It’s a great resource for long-term travelers on a budget who are need a home base for a while.
Managing Miles and Points
A site that shows you new ways to earn miles daily to book free flights. Become a member and start flying for free and earning miles every week.
Need help redeeming miles? Award Magic can help.
Forums are a great place to do research for an upcoming trip, ask questions, and talk to travel experts. These are some of the forums I use when planning a trip.
A great forum for frequent flyers and learning more about points and miles.
A good forum for off the beaten path travelers and destinations all over the world.
I use TripAdvisor cautiously. There are plenty of false reviews out there and even worse picky travelers who complain about everything. Use it to guide you but don’t let negative feedback from one person sway your travel instincts.
Tour companies are everywhere which means choosing the best option is challenging. These are tour companies I trust and know travelers have enjoyed for years.
I couldn’t be more excited to travel with Active Adventures this year. They work in small groups all over the world. Hike the Himalayas, head to Machu Picchu, the Galapagos, New Zealand and more. Check out what Active Adventures has for you.
Another great tour company, Intrepid offers trips all around the world. Travel in small groups and as they say, “travel the local way, eat the local way and sleep the local way.”
G Adventures offers a little something for everyone. Solo travelers, adventurers, families and groups can travel around the world with G.
They only travel insurance company I use and I highly recommend getting travel insurance. Stories of travelers being stuck with bills reaching tens of thousands of dollars in foreign countries are reason enough to pick up a good plan. Rates are very reasonable. You can get a free quote below.
Local Guides, Meals, and More
Everyone wants to live like a local, which can be great any many cities around the world. More and more great sites are dedicated to help you do just that. Living like a local is possible with these sites.
Dine in local homes around the world. The hosts cook for you in their homes for a reasonable price. From Mexico City to Israel I have made great friends with EatWith and highly recommend it. Read my guest post on their blog about my experience.
WithLocals finds you local activities, guides and dinners in homes around Asia. It is a great resource to find to find local experiences in Asia.
Get inside knowledge and deals from local tour companies and guides.
Travel Tech Questions
Going over your data plan will equal an expensive phone bill when you return home. Learn how to use your iPhone abroad for free and never owe your carrier money just because you leave the country.
Sites like Netflix, Youtube and Pandora are often blocked outside of the US. They can be accessed using this service. A benefit of using a VPN is the added security to protect your computer abroad.
Never lose another vacation photo with the ultimate vacation photo backup system!
More Travel Tech Resources
Favorite Travel Gear
I have tested a lot of travel gear over the years and picked out my favorites to share with you. Check them out below along with my favorite GoPro Gear.
Need a little travel inspiration? Read these interviews I did with some of my favorite travelers.
Rolf Potts: Legendary Traveler and Writer
Andrew McCarthy: Award Winning Travel Writer
Lee Abbamonte: Youngest American to Travel to Every Country
Chris Guillebeau: Author, Writer, Modern-Day Explorer
Jack Maxwell: The Travel Channel’s Booze Traveler