(StatePoint) Taking a vacation this summer? Before you can kick back and relax, you have to plan your trip.
But with so much information available in travel guides, on the Internet and from well-meaning advice-givers, sorting through facts, opinions and everything in between can be overwhelming.
Just as packing light can be liberating, so too can paring down your prep work. Here are some tips to ease your planning pain:
Limit Your List
Once you start telling people where you’re going, everybody who has had a two hour layover in your destination city comes out of the woodwork as an expert. So if your coworker offers you his third cousin’s dentist’s advice on the best breakfasts in Portland, don’t feel obligated to follow every recommendation.
Not only do you run the risk of being overwhelmed by the breadth of possibly outdated information, you may have different tastes than the source. So reach out to those you trust. Your best bets are like-minded friends who have spent a significant amount of time there, hopefully as residents.
Shorten Your Search
“The Internet is like a big overcrowded warehouse in which all types of information are piled on top of each other,” says Tom Copeman, founder and CEO of Nara, a personalized restaurant guide that seeks to tailor the Internet to a user’s interests and tastes. “Finding tools that shorten your search is crucial, especially when you’re on vacation with limited time to research your options.”
You no longer need to sift through never ending lists of hotels, shops, events and restaurants based on simple keyword searches, as tools like Nara can fast track the process.
Designed by neuroscientists, computer scientists, astrophysicists, artists and entrepreneurs, Nara’s neural network is dynamic, personalizing new information based on your preferences and its knowledge – similar to how Pandora recommends music, but for restaurants. And if you’re traveling with companions, Nara can combine everyone’s preferences to offer dining suggestions that will work for your entire group.
To learn more about creating an account to receive personalized restaurant recommendations anywhere in the U.S. or to download the service’s mobile app, visit www.nara.me.
Cities are in constant flux, so a travel guide has a shelf life. Only purchase one for any particular destination. Get the most out of your guide by looking for the book that best caters to your age and financial demographic.
Vacations are all about unburdening your stress, not adding to it. For smooth sailing, narrow the resources you use to plan your time away.