It's been a long time since I've posted a Travel Tip Tuesday post, so I thought I would take a break from all the trip reporting and reviewing to share a couple of really awesome sites (and an app) I recently discovered. They can all be extremely useful and valuable to anyone, but they each have a travel angle as well.
I discovered evreward last week when reading about one travel hacker's annual miles and points strategy. She mentioned that a large portion of her miles and points come from shopping portals, which was surprising. I've mentioned shopping portals before, but despite my considerable online shopping addition, I've honestly never really used them. To be completely frank, I really don't want to spend any more time than absolutely necessary when completing purchases and I also don't want to spend ages figuring out which portal I should be using.
Enter evreward.com. It's a quick, no frills site and all you need to do is enter where you plan to shop. From there, it will give you all possible loyalty program rewards as well as any coupons that may be available.
This is a game changer. I checked West Elm because I bought a dining table from the website just the other day. Unfortunately, since I already made the purchase, I completely missed out on 3 points per dollar when shopping through the Ultimate Rewards mall. Trust me, I won't be making this mistake again.
The second site I discovered recently is gethuman.com. This site can be a lifesaver for anyone - it's definitely not limited to travel. How many times have you had to call an 800 number only to spend ages trying to make it to an actual human? I swear Comcast has an endless loop they deploy just to spite me that never actually ends in a human...
Anyway, this is another very simple site that can be used any time you need to speak to someone to get support. Travel-wise, this could be if you're missing baggage, if your flight is cancelled or delayed, etc. You just enter the company you want to speak to on the front page of the site and it will get you the phone number and tell you exactly what to dial to make it through the prompts to an actual person as well as the average wait times. There's even an option to have the company call you back so you don't have to wait on hold. Amazing.
Path Talk is an app that I saw mentioned on Twitter because I follow the founder. He occasionally re-tweets people talking about how good the app is, but I dismissed the self-promotion for a while until I found myself in a situation where I needed to push back a dinner reservation. I couldn't make a phone call myself and Chris couldn't get through on the phone, so I downloaded the app. Path Talk lets you essentially text any business a question that you have and they work to get back to you with an answer in 5 minutes or less. Sometimes it takes a bit longer, but they update you along the way if there's a delay.
Amazingly, it seems that Path actually employs a call center of people who receive these incoming texts and then call the business themselves to ask the question/handle the issue. This is huge for anyone who doesn't like making phone calls or who find themselves in a situation where a call isn't possible. I think this is great for travel because you can use it for anything from asking whether a store nearby carries a particular item (forgot to pack something?) to having your own personal concierge get you a dinner reservation while you're traveling.
These three services are some of my recent favorites and I definitely wanted to share. Do you have any awesome little-known sites or apps to recommend? Share in the comments!
I've definitely been asked about my favorite travel apps and to be honest, I don't use very many. The ones I do use, however, are super helpful and I would definitely be lost without them. Feel free to share your favorites in the comments below!
In the interest of full disclosure, yes, the boyfriend works for Uber. However, that's not to say that this app doesn't rock. Any ride sharing app is awesome for travel because they are usually cheaper than taxis and instead of having to spend time flagging down a cab, you can just order a car on your phone and it comes right to you! I also love the fact that you don't need to have cash (all payment happens on your phone) and there's no tipping (great for my tipping anxiety). What more do you need? Uber is available in more than 100 cities and 30 countries. Yeah, you'll need to have some sort of cell service to use the app, but it's perfect for domestic travel.
If you're new to Uber, you can use my discount code, 5xe9p, for $10 off your first ride!
Plotter Social Maps
I want to use Tuesday posts to give quick travel tips that I've found to be most useful. Enjoy!
Airline Twitter Teams - If you're not tweeting, you're doing it wrong.
If you don't have a twitter account and you do any sort of traveling, you need to get one. My favorite travel tip is how amazing airline twitter teams are at responding to tweets. It's always 100x easier to get help via twitter than it will be using any other method, I guarantee you.
As someone who has experienced a fair amount of travel-related mishaps including, but not limited to: delays, broken DSLR cameras in gate checked bags (oops), a forgotten Kindle (same flight), cancelled flights, etc. - twitter is my best friend. Consider this: as bad as airline customer service generally is, their social media teams are usually the complete opposite.
Just a twenty-something with a full-time job and a full-time obsession with traveling. It's best to LiveTraveled.