Travel Resources

Which companies do I use to plan my trips?

From accommodation to flight booking and buying gear, below is a list of all the websites I do check out when planning all my travel, and I recommend you use them as well.

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, which means that, if you click on any them and purchase any of their services, I get a small commission, at no extra cost to you. This means that, if you want to support my website, you can use any of the links below every time you book a hotel, a flight, or purchase your travel insurance. These small earnings help me maintain and keep improving Against the Compass.

BEST TRAVEL INSURANCE

WORLD NOMADS

The premium travel insurance for all travelers. It just gives the most in-depth coverage to pretty much any nationality around the world.

IATI INSURANCE

Cheaper than World Nomads. The coverage is lower, obviously, but they do cover travel in many countries (covered in this blog) that World Nomads doesn't: Iran, Iraq, Syria, or Sudan. Book it through my link and get a 5% discount.

TRUE TRAVELLER

Probably, the best insurance for European adventurous backpackers: very cheap and covers a big bunch of adventurous activities.

CHAPKA

For budget backpackers, this is the cheapest insurance company (with in-depth coverage though) covering destinations from pretty much around the world (not Iran though). Buy it through my link and get a 7% discount.

For more information, read my tutorial: how to find the right travel insurance for your trip

WHERE DO I LOOK FOR ACCOMMODATION

BOOKING.COM

The first accommodation website I ever look at is Booking.com. They have endless listings everywhere around the world, including in many off the beaten track counties

AIRBNB

I don't like Airbnb, but I have to admit that it's very convenient. I use it for longer stays and when I want to get a full apartment. If you create a new profile through my link, you can get a voucher for your next stay.

HOSTELWORLD

If I want to stay in a hostel, I always check on Hostelworld

COUCHSURFING

I have been surfing and offering my couch since 2010. I have both hosted and surfed.

GUIDEBOOKS FOR PLANNING YOUR TRIP

BRADT GUIDES

Bradt is my favorite brand for guidebooks, as they exclusively focus on off the beaten track destinations and have the most insightful guides. If available, I always buy it.

LONELY PLANET

Lonely Planet is not as good as Bradt in my opinion, but still is a great introduction to the country and they have the largest range. I use Lonely Planet as a mere first introduction to the country

GET A KINDLE

Of course, I strongly recommend you get a Kindle, so you don't need to carry all your books. A Kindle has been one of my best investments.

MOBILE APPS I USE THE MOST

MAPS.ME

This is the app I use the most: Maps.me offers extremely detailed offline maps of all the countries in the world. It is very visual and more user-friendly than Google Maps, plus all maps can be edited by travelers and backpackers.

GOOGLE MAPS

The advantage over Maps.me is that it works better when calculating the fastest driving route and they have all the restaurant/bar reviews.

GOOGLE TRANSLATE

The best tool to communicate with non-English-speaking locals. It also has an option that allows you to translate printed text (like a restaurant menu) by taking a photo of it. You can download all dictionaries offline.

WHERE I BUY MY TRAVEL GEAR

AMAZON

From my drone to all my camping gear, backpacks and everything in between, I buy all my travel gear on Amazon, always. They have the largest range of products.

WHERE I BOOK FLIGHTS

SKYSCANNER

Some people use Momondo (it's a matter of preference) but I like Skyscanner, a search engine where you can find the cheapest flights, even in the most off the beaten track countries.

BEST VPN

EXPRESS VPN

A Virtual Private Network allows you to connect to a different server and IP, making your connection private and secure. It also allows you to access websites blocked in your current location (useful for Iran, China, or Saudi Arabia).

BANKING

N26

No matter where I travel to, with N26 I never, ever pay any commission, not even on the exchange rate. However, banking is always a very local thing and so far, it is only available for citizens of the EU.

BOOK A TOUR

GetYourGuide

I don't tend to travel in a tour-party but, occasionally, I do, especially when there is no other choice. I like GYG because you can book any tour with just one click. I used them for my Chernobyl tour.

BEGINNER TOOLS FOR BLOGGING

HOSTGATOR

The best web hosting for beginners, think no further. I started this blog with Hostgator and you can get a discount when using my link

SUPERSTAR BLOGGING

The best travel blogging course for beginners. It helped me a lot during the initial stages of Against the Compass. Read my review here.

KEYSEARCH

A basic SEO tool to look for the best keywords for your articles and do some basic competition analysis. Great for starters.

For more information, read: How to start a travel blog