Homepage / Technology / 5 steps to planning a vacation
Amazon says this Prime Day was its biggest shopping event ever Kudlow says President Trump is 'so dissatisfied' with China trade talks that he is keeping the pressure on As stocks regain their footing, an ominous warning looms Goldman Sachs downgrades Clorox to sell, says valuation is 'unsustainably high' How Satya Nadella has spurred a tripling of Microsoft's stock price in just over four years Kudlow says economic growth could top 4% for 'a quarter or two,' more tax cuts could be coming The one chart that explains Netflix’s stunning comeback US housing starts plunge 12% in June to a nine-month low Aerospace titans Boeing and Airbus top $110 billion in orders at Farnborough Target uses Prime Day to its advantage, logging its 'biggest online shopping day' so far this year Billionaire Marc Lasry sees bitcoin reaching up to $40,000 as it becomes more mainstream and easier to trade These are the 10 US airports where you're most likely to be hacked Amazon shares slightly higher as investors await Prime Day results Wreck of Russian warship found, believed to hold gold worth $130 billion A bullish ‘phenomenon’ in bond market is weeks away from fading, top credit strategist says Stocks making the biggest moves premarket: MS, GOOGL, TXN, UAL, NFLX & more Twitter shares up 50% since late April means most upside priced in, analyst says in downgrade EU fines Google $5 billion over Android antitrust abuse Mortgage applications fall 2.5% as buyers struggle to find affordable homes America may not have the tools to counter the next financial crisis, warn Bernanke, Geithner and Paulson Investors are getting spooked as the risk of a no-deal Brexit rises EU expected to fine Google $5 billion over Android antitrust abuse Ex-FBI chief James Comey urges Americans to vote for Democrats in midterm elections Elon Musk apologizes to British cave diver following baseless 'pedo guy' claim Disney, Comcast and Fox: All you need to know about one of the biggest media battles ever Xiaomi shares notch new high after Hong Kong, mainland China stock exchanges reach agreement The trade war is complicating China's efforts to fix its economy European markets set for a strong open amid earnings; Google in focus Hedge fund billionaire Einhorn places sixth in major poker tournament The biggest spender of political ads on Facebook? President Trump Asian stocks poised to gain after Fed's Powell gives upbeat comments; dollar firmer Stocks are setting up to break to new highs Not all FAANG stocks are created equal EU ruling may be too little, too late to stop Google's mobile dominance Cramer explains how Netflix's stock managed to taper its drop after disappointing on earnings Airbnb condemns New York City's 'bellhop politics,' threatens legal retaliation Amazon sellers say they were unfairly suspended right before Prime Day, and now have two bad choices Investor explains why 'duller' tech stocks can have better returns than 'high-flying' tech names Elon Musk is 'thin-skinned and short-tempered,' says tech VC Texas Instruments CEO Brian Crutcher resigns for violating code of conduct Google Cloud Platform fixes issues that took down Spotify, Snapchat and other popular sites Uber exec: We want to become the 'one stop' transportation app 'What a dumb hearing,' says Democrat as Congress grills tech companies on conservative bias Amazon shares rebound, report says Prime Day sales jumped 89 percent in first 12 hours of the event How to put your medical history on your iPhone in less than 5 minutes Investment chief: Watch these two big events in 2018 Even with Netflix slowing, the market rally is likely not over Cramer: Netflix subscriber weakness debunks the 'sky's the limit' theory on the stock Netflix is looking at watch time as a new area of growth, but the competition is stiff Why Nobel laureate Richard Thaler follows Warren Buffett's advice to avoid bitcoin Rolls-Royce is developing tiny 'cockroach' robots to crawl in and fix airplane engines After Netflix plunge, Wall Street analysts forecast just tame returns ahead for the once high-flying FANG group Roku shares rise after analyst raises streaming video company's price target due to customer growth China is investing 9 times more into Europe than into North America, report reveals Amazon says US Prime Day sales 'so far bigger than ever' as glitch is resolved Netflix is on pace for its worst day in two years US lumber producers see huge opportunity, rush to expand San Francisco to consider tax on companies to help homeless Homebuilder sentiment, still high, stalls as tariffs, labor and land drive up costs Powell backs more rate hikes as economy growing 'considerably stronger' Netflix history is filled with big stock declines – like today – followed by bigger rebounds Intel shares get downgraded by Evercore ISI due to rising competition from Nvidia, AMD Petco aims to reinvent the pet store with something you can't buy online Genetic testing is coming of age, but for consumers it's buyer beware Tech 'FAANG' was the most-crowded trade in the world heading into the Netflix implosion, survey shows Netflix weak subscriber growth may indicate a 'maturity wall' that could whack the stock even more: Analyst This chart may be predicting the bull market's demise Wall Street says Netflix's stock plunge is a ‘compelling’ buying opportunity because the streaming giant ‘never misses twice’ Tesla sinks after Musk tweets, again Boeing announces new division devoted to flying taxis Stocks making the biggest move premarket: NFLX, UNH, GS, AMZN, WMT & more Deutsche Bank downgrades Netflix, but says big subscriber miss is not 'thesis changing' IBM is experimenting with a cryptocurrency that’s pegged to the US dollar North Korea and Zimbabwe: A friendship explained Virgin Galactic spinoff Orbit to launch rockets from the UK with space deal Artificial intelligence will create more jobs than it destroys? That’s what PwC says ‘Treasonous’ Trump and ‘Putin’s poodle:' Scathing headlines follow the Trump-Putin summit China’s fintech companies offer ‘enormous’ opportunity, investment manager says Trump's performance at summit with Putin was 'unprecedented,' experts say Walmart and Microsoft link up on cloud technology as they both battle Amazon European stocks seen mixed amid earnings; Fed’s Powell to address Congress How I knew I should quit my day job and run my start-up full-time: Viral website founder China's stocks have been trounced, but the trade war may ultimately be good news for those shares Billionaire tech investor Peter Thiel bets on crypto start-up Block.one Asian shares subdued open after mixed close on Wall Street; energy stocks under pressure Amazon cloud hits snags after Amazon Prime Day downtime Netflix isn't doomed by one quarter unless people start questioning the long-term investor thesis Tech stocks set to sink on Tuesday after rough evening for ‘FANG’ Netflix plummets after missing big on subscriber growth This wristband lets humans control machines with their minds The U.S. has a rocky history convincing Russia to extradite computer criminals Amazon suffers glitches at the start of Prime Day Jeff Bezos is now the richest man in modern history 'The United States has been foolish': Read Trump and Putin's full exchange Goldman Sachs recommends these 5 highly profitable companies — including Nvidia — to combat rising inflation Goldman Sachs releases 'tactical' stock picks for this earnings season Three red flags for Netflix ahead of its earnings report The bond market may be raising recession fears, but don't expect one anytime soon Cramer: Banks are 'making fortunes' but are still as hated as they were during the financial crisis Putin told Trump at summit: Russia never meddled in US election

Technology

5 steps to planning a vacation

If you’re reading this, I’m guessing you’re ready for a vacation, but you don’t want to pay a travel agent to plan a trip, you’re not sure where to start, and you’re a DIY kind of person who’s willing to put in some elbow grease. Great!

This guide will serve as a handy list to help you plan a getaway, from getting good flight deals to making sure you won’t get stranded abroad. You want to get away for a while — we all do. This is the best way to go from daydreaming about far-off destinations to actually visiting them.

The natural first step in planning a trip is figuring out where to go. Some people already have a destination in mind, others are more flexible depending on when they’re able to take off work, or how much money they’re comfortable spending.

More from The Verge:
Whoa, check out the bezels on this jellyfish tank
Google ruins search for select users with autoplaying videos
Sprint mocks Verizon with Twice the Price pop-up shop stunt

One of the simplest tools to use if you’re flexible is Google Flights’ Discover Destinations search. You can narrow search results from your home airport down length of travel, time of year, and / or continent and see a map research of how much it’ll cost to get there. You can even specify destinations by interests, such as “beaches,” “ecotourism,” or “honeymoon” to get some popular recommendations. From there, you can narrow results even further by setting a max price limit or choosing only nonstop flights.

If you need even more ideas, sites like Booking.com’s Destination Finder can also help you figure out where to go depending on interests. Once you know where you’re going, you can use tools from Kayak and Hopper to check whether a flight price is good value.

If you’re extremely flexible on time and place but not so much on cash, your best bet is to follow flight deals sites. There are countless of sites like Airfarewatchdog or The Flight Deal, but one of the web’s most raved-about services is Scott’s Cheap Flights. You can sign up for a free newsletter, or get a paid subscription for insider alerts to ridiculously cheap fares. (I got a round-trip flight from New York to Japan and Singapore for under $500.)

It’s important to keep in mind that flight is not the only thing to consider in your overall budget. A flight to Thailand might be on the pricier end, but things even out once you arrive since cost of living is lower there. (The opposite may be true about a trip to Iceland.) So weigh these out carefully before committing to your destination. Don’t forget to consider visa entry requirements, too, depending on your country of citizenship.

Now that you’ve determined where you’re going, it’s time to book. If you followed the recommendations above, you should hopefully be getting a fairly decent deal on your flight.

There’s really no right way to do this — you might want to book direct from an airline’s website so you’re guaranteed to pick seats (assuming basic economy rules don’t apply) or if you want to use accumulated flyer miles to pay. You might also want to book via aggregators like Orbitz and Expedia to earn points, or use points from your credit card to book. The general advice is booking direct with the airline generally garner you more leverage when flight cancellations or other irregularities happen so you don’t have to contact a third party to rebook, but depending on your credit card, you may also have better travel protection policies. Check with your local bank to determine your eligibilities before making the final decision on where to book.

Determining where to stay can be quite overwhelming especially if it’s your first time traveling there and you don’t know anyone who can give you personal advice. Guides on sites like Airbnb and Foursquare make it helpful for travelers to learn more about various neighborhoods and businesses around there. It’s also helpful to browse city forums on TripAdvisor or even specific subreddits to get a sense of what locals / other travelers recommend.

Once you know where you’d like to stay, be sure to specify needs like free in-room Wi-Fi or late check-ins to ensure you’re looking at the right options. When booking on sites like Airbnb or HomeAway, carefully read through the description to determine whether there’s a cleaning fee or extra person fee associated. Some hosts charge varying amounts extra which means a room costing $89 / night with no additional fees will end up cheaper for three days than $59 / night plus a $150 cleaning fee.

If you’re on a budget, sites like HostelBookers, HostelWorld, or CouchSurfing are alternative options for finding somewhere to stay for cheap (or in some cases, free). Don’t let the word “hostel” throw you off, though. Some places offer amenities like swimming pools, game rooms, and rooftop bars, making them nearly indistinguishable from most hotels.

The rule of thumb for apps is you want to maximize the ability to use these apps offline in case you are in a remote, unserviced area or don’t want to splurge on an international SIM card / roaming plan. Before you go, here are some handy apps to keep in a travel folder.

When heading to a foreign country, Google Translate is a must. Ideally, you should download the language you want ahead of time so you can use it offline. Same goes for Google Maps. You can select an area you want to save and navigate without internet connectivity.

While you can opt to buy a local SIM card, assuming you’ve got an unlocked phone, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and Viber have made it easy to make international calls for free. Just remember to add your contacts in before leaving and hope your hotel Wi-Fi is strong enough to support a quick chat.

Many cities around the world offer local ride-sharing or taxi-hailing apps, so it’s worth checking if that’s something you’re willing to splurge on and download in advance. Having this tied to your credit card will eliminate to need to have cash handy first thing when you’re leaving the airport and getting a ride to your hotel. If you want to have some cash handy, however, you are more likely to get better rates exchanging it in advance with your local bank than to do so at airports.

Major credit card companies like Visa, Mastercard, and American Express offer apps that can help you find local ATMs, prepare a mobile wallet, or convert currencies. Just be sure to notify your banks if you plan on using the cards abroad so you’re not unexpectedly locked out.

In my opinion, these apps are the bare minimum you should have before taking off, but for specific interests like food spotting or finding locals to hang out with, BonAppetour has a great list for a variety of needs.

Personally, this is one of the most satisfying thing about going away. Turn off online accessibility and just enjoy yourself. You earned it.

Then, when you’re home, check back with Google Timeline to relive the trip all over again.

Like this story? Like CNBC Make It on Facebook

Don’t miss: Iceland is super expensive for travelers, but its best-kept secret is free

This article originally appeared on The Verge.

Source: Tech CNBC
5 steps to planning a vacation

Comments are closed.