We’ve been planning and making reservations since December for our trip that starts in just two weeks. We’re not done yet. For less complicated, shorter trips, I’ve really just winged it for years, but for 80 days in 7 countries and 21 cities (and half of those are the 3 week Spain driving tour) it has been necessary to bring a little more project management to the game.
There’s so much to be done and organized. I have to confess, I thought I was organized, but find that I need a check list for each city we are going to visit so that nothing slips through. Here’s what I’m using now:
| City Name
|Wake up in
||San Francisco, CA
||United Air to London, Gatwick
Gatwick Express to Victoria
Underground from Victoria to Putney
||Oyster Card – pay as you go
No rental car
||Staying with friends (thank you!)
|Food & Entertainment
||8 tourist days (plus 2 travel days)
See London Itinerary (includes sites and list of restaurants to check out)
London Pass for 10 days (it was on sale)
||Bus/Tube to Stansted Airport
RyanAir to Edinburgh
Because we are going in high season, we’ve also booked tickets for a few things we really don’t want to miss, like Stonehenge and Taming of the Shrew at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre. We’re going to my godson’s school fete, and Jacob has a long list of things he wants to see, so we’ll created a detailed itinerary in calendar form to make sure we don’t forget anything. (Or double book ourselves!)
By doing this, I realized I’d accidentally booked hotels for two different cities on the same night (non-refundable for one, so guess which one we are doing?) and a rental car in Crete for the week we are in Santorini. The good news is that when I re-booked, the rates were cheaper and we got a convertible for the same price. Score!
I am now at the obsessively checking stage where I Google map the distance from the airport or ferry to our lodgings and then back again. I have to check and note car rental closing times, last ferry and flights in or out and even sunset and sunrise (our tickets for the Eiffel tower are timed for one hour before sunset so we can watch the sun set over Paris. Jacob’s idea!
We are putting together a travel folder with copies of car vouchers, airline tickets, directions to lodging, etc. Also making a backup on Google drive and sending it to ourselves in email in case we lose it and need to reprint anything.
Any suggestions for trip planning are always appreciated!