Having done one round-the-world trip, plus an 8-month backpacking trip in South East Asia, it’s safe to say I’ve used a lot of resources to make these trips happen. Here’s a list of my favourite and most useful resources to use when travelling.
Skyscanner is my favourite flight search tool. It’s flexible for searching for flights, meaning you can search for an entire month. If you’re flexible about your destination, it even gives the option to search for ‘Everywhere’. I’ve often found it brings up prices for different carriers for the outbound and inbound flights, meaning it will give you the cheapest option available.
I used Agoda a lot in the Philippines, as many of the places I stayed weren’t on HostelWorld. It has some great, cheap options for accommodation and even allows you to collect points on your frequent flyer programs.
I’m a huge fan of Airbnb, although I’ve often found it’s cheaper to stay in a hostel when travelling solo. It’s a great place if you’re travelling as a couple or in a group because there’s so many unique properties to choose from (I have my eye on staying in a castle near Galway!) If you sign up via this link, you’ll receive £12 free credit to spend on qualifying bookings!
Another great option for hotels. I like that many of the options on Booking.com allow you to cancel up to 24 hours before, allowing for flexibility when travelling.
Probably the most popular hostel booking website for backpackers. I used HostelWorld often when I travelled In South East Asia and New Zealand. It’s great for solo travellers.
Whilst it doesn’t exactly need to be an iPhone (that’s just what I happen to use), a smart phone is handy on the road. Mine is unlocked so I buy a new SIM with a data plan in each country so I can use the internet whenever I like.
I took my Macbook with me to South East Asia and was surprised at the number of people who asked me how I hadn’t broken it! I used it regularly to watch tv series and films and more importantly to regularly upload my photos.
External Hard Drive
Great for backing up all those photos! Although I mostly use mine to store TV series and films to watch whilst on the road. Takes up barely any space and can provide 1000’s of hours of entertainment! I have a Seagate 2TB hard drive and it has plenty of space on it, even with all my photos, movies and tv series on it.
I took this one around South East Asia and it was a game changer. It can charge my iPhone around 4 times, plus it has 2 USB ports so I can charge my phone plus a friend’s phone (or another piece of tech) at the same time. Being able to listen to music for the entirety of a 24-hour bus journey makes the journey seem a little shorter.
Kindles are a game changer for anyone who loves travelling and reading. They allow you to take 1000’s of books anywhere and take up very little space. I have the paperwhite and it works great for me. I like the backlight – handy for reading in dorm rooms at night without disturbing room mates.
I use a Canon 600D (which has now been discontinued) and carried it around for my whole 8-month trip. It takes brilliant quality photos, although it does add a lot of weight to my backpack.
Considering how many activities in South East Asia are water based, a GoPro is a great camera option. They’re tiny so have the advantage of not taking up a lot of space and there’s a range of attachments you can buy for your camera to attach it to various parts of your body.
I used this LoweAlpine backpack on my last trip. Partly because it was on sale and partly because I liked the colour. A huge selling point for me was that it opens from the top and the front, ideal when you’re looking for a specific top to wear. I would’ve preferred to have a backpack with wheels but sadly I couldn’t find one that I liked.
Before you go…
UK Foreign Office
The Foreign Office website provides great safety and travel advice to travellers and is very easy to use. It has a list of all of the countries in the world and details of the embassies/consulates. Always check it before travelling!
An NHS website with advice on what vaccinations you need for different destinations. It also provides advice about malaria hotspots and has an up to date feed on disease outbreaks around the world. Always check before travelling, especially if you’re heading to a tropical destination.
You need to get travel insurance! Seriously! There’s always stories of people who’ve been in an accident in Thailand or Vietnam, whose families have had to set up fundraising pages to pay their hefty medical bills. Don’t let that be you! Medical bills can be expensive. In Cambodia, I spent 3 days in hospital and I paid $800.