Travel Tips & Resources

After years of travelling and living on the road, I now have a huge collection of websites, travel gear and other resources I use when I’m travelling or planning my travels.

I have tried out many websites and companies and I’m always on the lookout for new, innovative ways to save money or make my travel cheaper, easier and safer.

So I’m sharing with you the best websites for finding cheap flights, cheap (or free) accommodation, booking travel insurance and the best travel and outdoor gear, that I use most often or have personally reviewed.

 

Find Cheap Flights

Skyscanner.com –  the Godfather of flight searching. Skyscanner has brilliant features including the ‘Search Flights to Anywhere’ and the option to search the whole month for your ultimate cheapest leaving date.

Kayak.com – I use Kayak to get a comparison with Skyscanner and it sometimes produces results that Skyscanner doesn’t.

Expedia.com – Excellent resource to find cheap flights or accommodation particularly if you’re leaving from the UK or Europe.

 

Find Cheap Accommodation Worldwide

Booking.com

Hotels.com

Hostelworld.com

Trivago.com

Wotif.com

AirBnB.com

Travelzoo.co.uk

OnTheBeach –  Find package holiday sun deals, flight only or accommodation only deals, from the UK to thousands of beach destinations.  Search holidays from hundreds of companies, with the option to book now, pay later with a small deposit. OnTheBeach usually have some of the cheapest package holidays.

 

Trains, Buses and Getting Around

Nationalrail.co.uk – one of the UK’s biggest rail networks. Get a Railcard and save a 1/3 on fares.

Interrail.eu – 1 rail pass, 30 European countries, endless opportunities.

 

Nationalexpress – Travel across the UK by coach in comfort with AC, power outlets and 100’s of pick-up points.

Greyhound Buses A network of bus’s to get around Australia and they have a great range of passes you can use to go all around the land of down under.

Intercity BusesNew Zealand’s largest network of bus’s to get around New Zealand. These guys even run in the off seasons and have great night bus options. You can also get great passes to use for travel anywhere and are based on hours of travel, not km’s.

NakedbusIn no way is there any nakedness on these bus’s. Naked bus are the next biggest New Zealand bus network and are sometimes a lot cheaper than Intercity. But the timetable is very limited in the off peak season.

Interislander Ferries The iconic Kiwi ferry, the Interislander is the oldest of the two ferry companies crossing the Cook Strait. and arguably has the best facilities.

 

Travel Insurance

World Nomads Travel Insurance  – World Nomads is quite possibly the best travel insurance for backpackers or travellers. You can buy travel insurance or renew your existing one from any country or wherever you are in world – and you can do it all online. I couldn’t recommend this company more. 

 

 

Essential Travel Insurance – Essential Travel is great for those shorter trips or if you have a slightly smaller budget. Be aware though, it’s nowhere near as comprehensive as World Nomads insurance and it won’t completely cover you for adventure activities. UK residents only.

 

Housesitting

Trustedhousesitters.com – I use this website most of the time to find my house-sits around the world. Very easy website to use, you can message homeowners directly and once you’ve joined, you can get new house-sits emailed to you directly every day so you don’t miss out on one. Also a good extra is you get 24-hour access to a vet assistance helpline.

Trusted Housesitters is global so you can find a great house to sit anywhere in the world and have free accommodation when you’re travelling. Winning!

Kiwihousesitters.co.nz – This is the site I use mostly when I’m living in New Zealand. It’s $65 to join and that’s for an entire year. Super easy to use, and you can browse house-sits all over New Zealand and message homeowners directly.

 

 Travel Gear

Lowe Alpine TFX 55 L Kongur Backpack – This is my current backpack and it’s the best one I’ve had. It’s specifically designed for females and has an adjustable suspension system which allows it to fit different torso types.

It’s comfy and has all the features you want in a backpack – the best feature is the ability to be able to unzip the main compartment from the middle.

Osprey Kestrel 68 L Backpack My partner has this one and he says it’s amazing. Robust, functional and good quality. Osprey are famous for their high quality backpacks and how they almost last a lifetime, if you look after them.

Osprey Daylite Plus 20 L Daypack – This is my current daypack. I use it as hand luggage when travelling and on day hikes. It has an internal sleeve for a laptop and a hydration pack, plus a headphone port and multiple pockets.

 

Outdoor Gear

Cotswold.com – Cotswold Outdoor is brilliant. They have stores in the UK but you can also order anything online and have delivered worldwide. The staff are so knowledgeable and fitted us with backpacks plus hiking boots for our New Zealand trip. They’re all outdoor enthusiasts and really know their stuff on multiple brands.

I bought my Lowe Alpine 55 L Backpack and my Osprey 20 L Daypack from here and they’re both amazing. My boyfriend also bought his Osprey 68 L Backpack from here and he loves it. We also both bought Meindl and Salomon hiking boots from here.

Kathmandu.com  – Excellent outdoor gear from this place. I currently have a Kathmandu Soft Shell coat, that’s pictured on a few on my New Zealand Instagram shots. Warm, showerproof, windproof, and it looks good. We also bought our tent and sleeping bags from here. Their customer rewards program is pretty good, giving you store credit when you buy and reach a purchase total amount.

 

Health & Wellness Products

iHerb.com – Fantastic website that will deliver ANYWHERE. I use iHerb when I’m in New Zealand when everything else is just too expensive for delivery to NZ. It’s brilliant for vitamins, fitness supplements, natural remedies, beauty products, herbs & superfoods.

Use my code LLM916 when buying and you’ll get a cool discount.

 

Technology & Digital Stuff

Anker PowerCore Power Bank 20,100 mAh – This power bank has been a complete lifesaver during camping days and for times when we were in hostels that didn’t have enough power-points free. It’s portable and can charge an iPhone almost 7 times, a Samsung tablet 4 times and it charges my HTC One Mini 8 times.  

The Anker power bank recharges itself in 10 hours with a decent wall charger, bit longer with just a phone charger. This is my absolute favourite travel item – you need this in your life.

Updated model of this is the Anker PowerCore 26,800 mAh  

Anker PowerCore Power Bank 10,000 mAh – Small, super-slim, lighter and more portable than the PowerCore 20,100 but can still charge an iPhone or Samsung Galaxy 3 times.

Anker PowerCore+ Mini Power Bank mini 3,350 mAh- Must-have for on-the-go smartphone charging in all travel and life scenarios. Teeny weeny, mini design (size of a mini torch) but enough juice to give one full charge to your smartphone.

HTC One Mini – My current smartphone. Amazing camera on this phone, most of my Instagram photos have been snapped on this. So robust, it’s been dropped a million times and I find the ‘mini’ size design is much more comfortable for my tiny hands, than regular oversized smartphones.

Bez Worldwide Travel Adaptor – All in one universal Travel Adaptor with 2 integrated USB charging ports too. 

Anker PowerPort Speed 5-port USB Wall Charger – This charger is small enough to carry with you and features Qualcomm quick charge, so you can charge 5 USB powered devices all at the same time. Can be used with HTC One. iPhone, iPad, Samsung Galaxy, Nexus, LG and most other smartphones or tablets.

SanDisk Clip Jam 8GB MP3 player As I’m not a fan of Apple products, I often look for music alternatives. And this tiny MP3 player is absolutely brilliant, I’ve had it for 3 years and it’s still going strong. It has 8 GB storage, an SD card slot for expanded memory space and one single charge gives you 18 hrs of listening.

It’s a simple interface, user-friendly and has drag-and-drop technology to add music. (I love this feature as I really don’t like being forced to use software just to transfer music).

I even bought my boyfriend one who was a solid, old-school CD Walkman guy and he loves it.

Transferwise

I have written a post on the blog the awesomeness of Transferwise and how it’s a digital revolution for transferring money without a bank. Get your first transfer free using my link. 

 

Travel Apps

Google Maps  – the best travel app – when you’re lost. And for finding an address or location of anything, wherever you are.

Android & Play Store 

Apple/iPhone 

 

MapsMe – For map content you can download and look at offline when you have no internet connection.

Android & Google Play store

Apple/iPhone users

 

Ithaka – For an ‘Ask Me Anything” Thailand app that has been a lifesaver in the past and is very accurate.

Android & Google Play store

 

Booking.com app – very fast and simple to book quickly on your favourite ‘Booking dot yea’ website.

Android & Google Play store

Apple/iPhone users

Books

Lonely Planet Travel Guides Lonely Planet guides are informative, accurate and always full of interesting content. These guides have helped me out loads of times. Although I love leafing through an actual travel guidebook, they can be quite heavy. Lonely Planet comes through by offering all their guidebooks as a pdf version ready for you to download to your Kindle or E-reader device.

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle – A book all about mindfulness written by the guru of all things mindful. This book actually changed my life. Read it.

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