There are thousands of travel websites, and you are probably familiar with the biggest ones such as Travelocity, Expedia, Orbitz, Priceline and Kayak. Some of the smaller, lesser known websites have very cool features that you may find helpful when planning your next vacation. Here are four of the most useful travel websites:
• Flightaware.com has been around since 2005, and “provides live flight data, airport information, weather maps, flight planning, and navigation charts, as well as aviation news and photos to over two million users a month.” Since you can track the exact location of any flight, you can check the position for the flight ahead of yours. This will allow you to determine if it will arrive on time, and whether your flight will have a delayed departure. This is particularly handy when weather threatens flight times.
• Wikitravel has been in existence since 2003, inspired by Wikipedia. Its mission is to be a world-wide travel destination guide, and travelers are the ones who have added much of the information. Currently Wikitravel has almost 25,000 destination guides, created by Wikitravelers, contributors who are travel enthusiasts who are willing to share information from their own experiences and research.
You can click on any of the destinations categorized by continents, then countries, and so on. Detailed information about the history, geography, culture, visa requirements, currency, getting in, getting around, what to see, where to eat, itineraries, etc. is available on this cool site. You can easily become a contributor and add updated information yourself, if you like.
One of the most useful features of this site is a category called Phrasebooks. Once you click on it, hundreds of languages are available, where you can find phrases and translations that would be most useful for a traveler. Some of the phrasebooks are more complete than others, and these are color coded for your reference.
• Citysearch.com has information on over 75,000 locations nationwide, and rates the top 10, most popular, or most trendy restaurants, bars, clubs, and shopping areas. It is especially helpful when you are travelling to a city for the first time, and want to check out what is unique to that city, instead of a chain restaurant, for instance.
• Seat Guru is a great site when booking airline flights. You can find the seating configuration for every flight, and obtain detailed information regarding the pros and cons of specific seats. This is particularly helpful when you need that extra legroom on a cross-country flight, or want to make sure you are not seated where you cannot view the movie screen on a transatlantic flight. It can also be accessed on your mobile phone by clicking on mobile.seatguru.com.
Vacation planning can be fun, especially with these travel websites that provide you with information and make your trip more enjoyable. Have fun checking these out.