With the significant advances with the internet and online services, technology has managed to pull every inch of this world much closer and far more accessible. Cable and Libraries no longer hold hostage the exclusive visuals of majestic countries around the world. Travel to exotic lands is no longer limited to the rich, famous and fortunate. We can access travel around the world at the drop of a dime, with what’s simply in our pockets, purses and backpacks. Our phones, tablets, laptops and computers contain every resource we’ll need to start crossing dream countries off of our bucket lists.
Once upon a time, we’d have to go through travel agencies in order to do any kind of extensive travel. Sure, you could chance it and just show up to your destination of choice, if you had the resources to do so, but there was no internet and hence no online services to assist with lodging accommodations. There was no way to know the kind of area, in terms of safety, you’d be staying in unless you had friends and family in the area already. Otherwise, there were no reviews to read besides travel magazines.
The thing you’d have to keep in mind is magazines have paid content, so reviews didn’t come without being paid for. If you didn’t speak the language of your travel destination, or even know they spoke a different language, one could end up on quite the challenging vacation. Travel agencies would do the research required to make sure you are in the safest area for tourist, they’ll give you important facts about the area and plan activities for travelers. They’ll plan all of your travel, from flights to lodging. Of course, there could be a heavy price tag that came along with their work.
Nowadays, new websites to facilitate the most convenient, inexpensive travel possible are popping up all the time. With the new sites, come search engines that do the comparison shopping between the sites to divert you to the best deal for the time of your travel. These new online travel services had a huge impact on the travel agencies because a majority of travel agencies services included research, educating, planning and booking. Websites like Travelocity1 and Trip Advisor2 provide first-hand accounts of travel to destinations of choice, along with pictures, recommendations and where to find the best discounts. With apps like Google Maps with satellite and street images of anywhere in the world, you can literally see the area you’d be staying in to see where it is located in respect to common conveniences. With language apps, you can communicate with anyone anywhere in the world.
Advances in technology have brought forth travel accessibility like no other time in history. Lodging accommodations have become innovative and abundant. Travelers are no longer confined to just hotels and youth hostels. Home owners are now opening their homes to travelers for a cost, putting more money back in the pockets of small businesses. A majority of the time, they are a fraction of the costs for hotels. They have amenities hotels don’t have, like full kitchens, washer and dryer units, extra rooms, etc. Travelers see savings with purchasing meals from local stores as opposed to eating out regularly on vacation. Whether your preference is a hotel or a vacation home, here are a few great resources to help you find lodging accommodations for your next travel.
HomeAway.com3 is a vacation home website where you could find available houses, condos, apartments, cabins and various other types of lodging accommodations for your next vacation. You can choose from over 2 million homes in over 200 countries around the world. Home Away is very user friendly and searches are simple and fast. You can search for city, state, or country for your desired destination and within seconds, have returned countless options for lodging, in which you can filter by preference. Once you create an account, you can save on vacation rentals, track inbound and outbound messages between you and owners of properties of interest. If you are an owner, you can manage all booking information in one convenient location.
Airbnb.com4 is a fantastic resource where hosts can open their homes to travelers. It’s a great site to earn some extra cash for your travels and make money while you’re actually traveling. More than that, it provides safe, secure and reliable booking for any type of traveler and covers many destinations around the world. Airbnb also offers a world-wide community in which you can become a citizen. They offer up to date travel data, home sharing clubs you can join, Tourism advisory, world-wide travel news and cultural education. It boasts to be more than just your average booking website.
Turnkeyvr.com5 was launched in 2012 and was birthed from a void John Banczak and TJ Clark perceived as missed value for travelers around the world. They wanted traveler’s hotel experiences to be reliable with top customer service, clean with exceptionally high quality. They are an up and coming travel website, so though the inventory isn’t as abundant as sites like HomeAway or Airbnb, Turnkey’s low inventory translates to the highest of quality inventory, since they are so meticulous about properties they decide to manage. They are adding to their property management inventory every day and Turnkey would also be a great avenue to make extra money for hosts.
Finally, Flipkey.com6 rounds out the list for best vacation rental website for your next trip. FlipKey carries the added bonus of being a subsidiary of Trip Advisor rentals, which means consumers get access to a larger database of properties. Trip Advisor is a great website to review vacation locations prior to booking final accommodations. They provide pictures, recommendations and first hand experiences of your interest in areas of choice. FlipKey will offer the same kind of experience with excellent customer service and safe, secure booking online.