The thought of packing my luggage always makes me excited but the real catch is that, I hate the pre-trip planning process where I often find myself having to comb through different websites and blogs to produce a decent itinerary.
In this post, I would like to share a great online travel planner, Justgola for lazy travellers like myself.
Justgola is a smart travel assistant in Asia which is founded in Singapore (that explains why it is called just go lah – Singapore slang). This website helps you to plan, manage and share your holidays easily. As it is really awesome, it has clinched first prize at both the Singtel (Singapore) Accelerator Challenge 2014 and the Samsung-Singtel Mobile App Challenge, 2014.
[6 good reasons why you should use Justgola]
(1) It helps you save time.
A typical traveller has to browse about 8 to 20 websites, key in anything from 5 to 40 queries on Google, and ask up to three questions on forums or social networking websites such as TripAdvisor to find sufficient information to plan a trip. All in all, these add up to 30 hours spent on planning for one 3-day trip.
Justgola helps to significantly reduce the time needed in planning a trip (from 30 hours to 2 second), and to allow travelers to travel with confidence.
I definitely need to highlight how easy it is to plan a trip using Justgola. For example, if you are planning an itinerary for a trip to Boracay, you simply have to select Boracay, indicate the number of days for your trip and your budget. You could even indicate your travel interests i.e. beach, cultural, shopping etc and the website will generate an itinerary to suit your interests.Something rather thoughtful is that they even take your preferred travel style into consideration! You could decide on the pace that you would like the travel to be i.e. hectic, reasonable or slow and the customised itineraries will be generated according to your preferences.(3) It keeps everything organised.
Look, this is a print screen of an itinerary I have generated for Boracay! It is so detailed that it indicates the time that I can depart from the hotel (most likely at the city centre) to the various attractions like the Maniguin Island Lighthouse and the Mainit Falls. They also factored in timings for your meals. You can click in to see photos and write-ups on the different attractions too.One other amazing feature is that you can share this itinerary which you have just created with your friends and family via email or social media platforms. They could then be notified of your travel plans.
(4) It is highly convenient.
If you don’t really want to create your own itineraries, you could copy what others have. This website features tried-and-tested itineraries (coupled with great photos and important tips) by other travellers. For instance, I chanced upon this 4-day itinerary to Taipei which practically covers all the must-go tourist attractions in Taipei.These travellers are so generous in sharing and they even gave precise directions on how to locate the attractions and the total duration of travel.
Justgola also synchronises your itineraries seamlessly between web and your mobile devices for offline use including the free offline map. It can show you where you are on the directional maps even without wifi or data plan. Awesome!
(5) It is FREE!
One oither reason on why you should make Justgola your travel buddy is that it is totally free! Other than accessing it on your computers or laptops, you could also download it on Android devices from Google Play Store too! (The IOS version will be coming soon!)
(6) It is great for post-trip sharing too!
After your trip, Justgola provides trip blog technology that automatically groups travellers’ photos to update your itinerary accordingly. You do not need to perform the arduous and manual task of organising and naming photos. Moreover, it also allows you to add photos and quick notes (locations, prices, experiences, travel tips) about what you did on your vacation. You can then share easily with family, friends and other fellow travellers through social networks.
Well, I guess the only shortfall is that it doesn’t provide trip planning for countries beyond Asia. If not, it would definitely come in handy for my upcoming Europe trip.