How to create an organized travel itinerary
Planning a trip doesn’t have to be a challenging process. If you gather all your bookings and reservations, organize your ideas, and identify what sites you want to see, trip planning becomes a fun activity that gets you excited for your next adventure. An itinerary is a central hub for all your travel plans, allowing you to keep everyone in place for simple access and sharing. With the best organization app on hand, you can also keep track of all aspects of your itinerary on the go, from anywhere that offers an internet connection.
Whether you’re planning to take a road trip to the next state over or putting together an international trip for the ages, it’s essential to review all the details and logistics well before hopping on your plane or jumping in the car. Let’s look at a few of the ways you can create an itinerary for your trip to ensure you see and experience as much as possible.
Research Where You Want to Go and What You Want to See
Before putting together a formal itinerary document, you’ll need to consider where you’re going and what you want to see. With the realities of covid and the accompanying border restrictions, you won’t always be able to simply pick a point on the map. If you’re traveling domestically, there’s significantly less to worry about in terms of where you can and cannot go. However, if you want to leave the country, there are a few websites you’ll need to visit and a few key facts you should look for when you do.
First, review border restrictions based on your vaccination status and country of residence. As of April 2022, European countries such as the United Kingdom and Iceland are open to all travelers. However, plenty of places such as Australia, New Zealand, and Japan are not yet ready to welcome new travelers. Next, you’ll need to research visa requirements, including passenger locator forms.
Once you’ve decided where you’re going and how you’re getting there, it’s time to consider what you want to see. Look up top attractions for your destination and read more about what’s going on during the dates when you’ll be there. The key is to simply get as much information down on paper as possible in the initial stages.
Collect and Connect The Essentials
To begin creating a formal itinerary, start with the basic details of your trip, including where you’re going and when you’re planning to be there. Flight details, including booking codes and departure times, are the next essential item. If you’re taking a train or driving to your destination, you may want to consider estimating departure times and expected costs. Booking codes and reservation details for your hotels, hostel, or Airbnb are also important for mapping out your travel plans.
Put Everything in a Timeline
Once you’ve gathered all the essential details of your travel plans, it’s time to put everything together in a timeline format. Assign activities to specific days and map out where and when you need to be at a particular place. This timeline doesn’t just have to display what day you’ll be doing something or going somewhere. You can break it down by the hour if you’re planning a lot in one day!
Check the hours and availability of the attractions you’re hoping to visit to ensure everything fits within your plan. Sometimes, certain museums, monuments, and historical sites are only open on weekdays or are otherwise closed on Sundays. You may also want to consider ranking your preferences for a particular destination, particularly if there’s too much you want to do there for the time you have available. Regardless of how you choose to structure your itinerary timeline, it should always include an abundance of downtime, so your vacation isn’t a rush to stay on schedule.
Include Graphics That Set The Mood
Your itinerary doesn’t have to be a boring list of items! There are plenty of options for upgrading this document to include graphics or images that highlight your destination and get you excited for your upcoming journey. Many digital design platforms offer the opportunity to create itinerary documents with stylish visual elements, so it’s not just another Google Drive document.
Drop Pins on the Map
To supplement your itinerary, you may want to consider mapping out your travel plans with the assistance of the Google Maps “saved places” feature. To get started, you’ll need to have a Google Account. From there, you can simply drop pins or save locations to a list, so you can see where everything on your itinerary is before you go.
This can be particularly helpful for planning out how you’ll get around town if you don’t have a car. When you go to search for directions during your trip, you can simply click on the Maps pin within the mobile app. You can also easily share your lists of places with anyone else who’s going to be traveling with you.
Keep Everything Online
An organization and visual storage app will make it easy to access your trip plans and travel itinerary from anywhere in the world. Accessing your documents, reservation details, and booking codes through such an app on the go can be incredibly handy in a variety of situations. You can also create tasks for things you still need to book, in case there are still a few plans you need to make.