How to plan and book your holiday on your own (DIY travel)

Many of us work on excel sheets when planning a holiday to a big destination like Europe, USA, Australia etc. With smaller destinations like Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia etc, we may look online or contact a travel agent.

What is the advantage of planning your own holiday? Travel agents may sell you a popular fixed package. For customized packages, they may or may not have knowledge of a destination and most likely rely on a local agent to provide information over email. This is time consuming and you may not have an idea of all the things to do in a destination and pick what you want to do.

If you decide to plan your own holiday, you may start with an excel sheet to note down the cost of the individual components. For e.g. you may check the airfares and hotel rates on an online travel portal, sightseeing options on another website, transfers on different websites etc. and note the prices in excel. Then, you may check the total budget and may want to further curtail the holiday expense by removing some sightseeing or compromising on a hotel. All this is a lot of work and time consuming.

If you went ahead with the booking using this process, there is no one person responsible for your entire holiday. No one knows if you are actually going on a holiday other than you. For e.g. Let’s assume you have booked flights on one website and hotel on another and so on. Let’s say your flight is late, and you miss the airport pickup booked for you. You need to call the car operator and inform them beforehand. But how do you do this when you don’t know if your flight will be late? It’s not possible. Similarly, let’s say you land at the hotel and the hotel says you don’t have a room? It may sound difficult to believe but these things happen. Will you call the online travel company and wait in line before someone answers your call?

When I went to Helsinki, one of my friends had booked a hotel from Expedia.com. He landed at the hotel at 11pm and was told that there is no room. This is because the city was sold out. It was -2 degrees in November and he was freezing.

What if you don’t have to work with excel and you can do all this on one single portal dedicated to holidays? What if there is one company that knows that you are on a holiday and they take responsibility for your entire trip end to end? There are very few such online companies in the market and each have a different way of presenting information related to holidays to you.

You could also visit http://www.tripdarwin.com if you want to book a holiday on your own. You can add the different components like flights, hotels etc. individually to the package or cart. You have a transparent view of the pricing of the various individual components. You can research through all the different sightseeing or activities in the destination. If you want to reduce the package price, you can remove some components and add something else. Once you are happy, you can even book it instantly. Now since all components are booked at one place, the company knows that you have booked a holiday and they will make sure things are taken care of when you are travelling. Here you will also benefit from special rates only applicable for holiday packages. The same rates are not available for individual component booking.

We hope you have a great experience planning and booking your own holiday along with the comfort that someone is there to take care of you.      

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