Whether on a business trip or on vacation - we can happily do without additional stress and unnecessary costs. The good news is that there are apps and tips that can help you save money. Time, nerves and money.
We have collected the best travel hacks for you, so that your trip becomes a special experience and you can concentrate on the essentials. Namely on more relaxation, more joy, more focus. Which tricks are our favorites, we tell you here.
By the way, we proceed chronologically. From searching & booking to all preparations and the day of departure to your stay at your destination.
Search & Book: The best travel hacks for flights and trains
#1 Book your flight directly with the airline
Comparison portals come with some advantages. You quickly gain an overview, get flight times from different providers, and see many offers. In the next step, however, it can be worthwhile to go to the airline's website and book even cheaper here. But keep in mind our second tip:
#2 Book in incognito mode
Websites can remember whether you have already visited them. If you go to the same page again and again, they will recognize your interest and increase the prices. But this can be easily avoided. To do this, go into the incognito mode of your browser before you open the airline's website. Here's how it works on your computer in Chrome and Firefox, as well as on your smartphone.
#3 Avoid expensive additional options
Once you have decided on a flight, many additional options will be suggested to you during the booking process. To save money, you should deactivate them and rather be active yourself. Pack healthy snacks in your hand luggage instead of ordering the overpriced meal on board. Download movies to your smartphone or tablet instead of buying access to the entertainment area. Consider traveling with carry-on luggage instead of checking an extra suitcase.
#4 Enjoy more space and legroom
With the extra options, you'll also get to the point where you can choose your seat on the plane. If you don't care where you sit, you can go ahead without choosing and save a few dollars right away. However, if you want to enjoy more legroom - without directly booking a premium upgrade - it is recommended that you select an aisle seat at the back of the plane. Here you can stretch your legs out to the side during the flight. And: The seats in the airplane are usually assigned from the front to the back. If the plane isn't fully booked, seats in the back remain empty and you may even have an entire row just for you.
#5 Better to take the train
If your destination isn't exactly 1,000 kilometers away, you should book a train instead of a flight. Not only is it better for the environment, but it also has other benefits:
On business trips, you can place your laptop on the table in front of you and connect to the WLAN. Between the seats, you'll find a power outlet to recharge your battery. And once you're seated in the rest compartment, you can work undisturbed.
Are you traveling as a family? Then the toddler compartment is something for you. In these extra cabins, there is enough space for extra luggage and strollers, they are not far from the toilet with changing table and offer a protected space.
In general, we find train travel more relaxing. There are no nerve-wracking check-ins, you can move around freely during the trip and even stand up sometimes, and train stations are usually located in the middle of the city, so you can save on other means of transportation. Just remember to book early. The earlier you book, the cheaper the tickets.
By the way, the app Omio helps you to compare bus, train and plane.
Preparations & the day of arrival: Here's what you should keep in mind
#1 Secure travel documents & tickets
Your passport, tickets, booking confirmations, insurance policies (does yours also apply abroad?) - photograph everything before you leave and send the photos to yourself by e-mail. This way you not only have everything with you digitally and save printing costs and paper, but you can also be sure that you have access to it even if your cell phone is out or lost.
#2 Choose & pack your suitcase smartly
You surely know this: The more black suitcases there are in one spot, the greater the risk of confusion. Colorful luggage (like our Miigo or Viia series) provides a higher recognition value. This way, you'll always grab your suitcase or recognize when someone else grabs it by mistake. Once you've decided on a color, you can consider what size you need. For weekend trips hand luggage is enough, for a business trip we rely on the business wheeler, and if it's going with the family, a trolley in L and XL offers enough storage space and comfort.
When packing, we recommend that you roll your clothes. This saves space and avoids wrinkles. Also, it's advisable that you put heavy things like cosmetics at the bottom.
#3 Check-in online
No queue, no paper, no extra costs - check in conveniently online before you travel. You'll usually receive an email from your airline with instructions.
#4 Get through security without stress
You can save time and nerves not only at the online check-in. It's also easy to do at the security checkpoint:
1. Don't wear jewelry and, if possible, avoid wearing a belt and boots with metal buckles.
2. Stand in the queue where there are more business people than "travel beginners". They are usually more experienced and it goes faster.
3. Have your ziplock bag of liquids and your electronics ready. You don't know which liquids you are allowed to take in your hand luggage? Find out here.
4. Don't push your way in and listen to what security says. The less chaos there is, the less stressful it is for everyone to get through security.
At your destination: Conveniently save money & discover more
#1 Shopping for snacks
One of your first stops - after checking into your accommodation - should be the nearest local supermarket. Buy local snacks here to keep in your room or apartment. Often the minibar can be converted into your "own fridge". This is cheaper for you and at the same time a small support for the local economy.
#2 Get around by public transport
In many cities and regions, public buses and trains are the real sightseeing stars. In Lisbon, for example, line 28 runs for ten kilometers through the city's most beautiful areas. In Berlin, you can take bus line 100 from the Zoologischer Garten to the Alex and pass the Gedächtniskirche, Bellevue Palace, the Brandburger Tor and many other spots. And in London, it's best to get on the 11 at Sloane Square in the direction of Liverpool Street.
Sure, unlike the official sightseeing bus, you don't get any information about the places you pass. But it's a lot cheaper and you get to mingle with the locals and experience the area in a much more authentic way.
#3 Take a tour with a local guide
If you want to learn more and a bus ride isn't enough for you
, you can also search for a tour with a local in the app Get Your Guide. They'll take you to secret hotspots, show you "their" city from a much more real perspective, and make each tour more personal - and often funnier.
Plus, a local will help you understand local traditions and customs and learn about the culture.
#4 Buy a City Pass
Exploring a city during a tour is nice. But there will come a time when you will surely want to go to a museum, a cultural site or one of the most famous buildings.
To save yourself stress, decide beforehand which sights you want to visit. Write a prio-list and then coordinate on which day you will visit which spot.
Once you know how many sights are on your schedule, you can look for a City Pass. These are tickets that give you discounted admission to multiple attractions.
Travel Hacks: It all comes down to this
Our travel hacks are primarily designed to help you relax more and travel with a good feeling. That's why the number one rule is to think of them as tips, not to-do lists. No trip is perfect. And that's a good thing. You can't plan everything. But you can see everything as a unique experience and learn from it for next time.
Enjoy your trip.