We created this page so there is one area on the site where people could see all of the services, products and sites we use regularly.
If you don’t know where to start with booking flights or accommodation, you want to know more about what gear we use when we travel or you’re interested in what financial products we use ourselves – you’re in the right place.
This page does contain some affiliate links, so if you buy something through some of our links we’ll receive a small commission, with no cost to you. It’s important to say that we will only recommend products and services that we love and use extensively.
Looking for flights can be really stressful, there are so many comparison sites out there and you’re never sure whether you’re genuinely getting the best price.
Well, after many years of trying every site out there we can confidently recommend just two comparison sites – use these guys and you will definitely get the best deals out there.
Skyscanner is our ‘go to’ for flight comparison. The interface is the easiest to use that we’ve come across – you can search for the cheapest dates in a whole month and put in to travel ‘anywhere’ if you want some inspiration. You can filter by price, time of travel, number of layovers, for a preferred airline – there are so many different options but all incredibly easy to use .
We never use Skyscanner without also using Momondo as a comparison – its interface uses a number of different travel partners to Skyscanner so can quite often find alternative airlines. Again, the interface is great with a number of customisable filters. It automatically shows you a graph of prices in a full month for your chosen destination so you can get the best deal.
Back in our early days of travel we’d spend ages on loads of different comparison sites trying to find the best hotel prices. Now, we immediately go to Booking.com and can be confident that we’ll find what we need. It offers everything from hostel dorms to luxurious hotels and whole house rentals – it’s a great one-stop-shop no matter what your budget. It has a review system like Tripadvisor so you know what you’re getting and you can easily filter by price, facilities available and distance from your chosen location.
Airbnb is one of our favourite ways to travel! We were early adopters, our first Airbnb stay was in 2012, and we’ve continued to use it on almost every trip. The idea is that you can rent space from someone, whether it’s a place to put your tent in their garden, a spare room, or the whole house!
It’s reasonably priced, you get to stay with some really fascinating people and both the host and the houseguest get reviewed. We have had some of our best travel experiences with Airbnb and can’t recommend it enough. Get £30 or $40 off your first stay using this link.
Priceline deserves a special mention for bookings within the U.S, we use it regularly when on our American road trips. The unique aspects of Priceline are the Express Deals and Name Your Own Price options. You get a much cheaper deal, the catch is that you don’t know exactly which hotel you’re getting until you’ve booked. The savings can be massive and with a bit of sleuthing you can usually find out which hotel is on offer.
Hotwire is another platform that deserves an honourable mention for when you’re planing travel within the U.S. Similarly to Priceline, they offer fantastic discounts on last minute hotels. On two separate trips we’ve stayed on the Vegas strip for $40 per night thanks to Hotwire. Our advice for last minute hotel planning in the U.S is to never check Priceline without also checking Hotwire and vice versa.
We don’t buy a whole lot of clothing but we do love our travel and hiking gear. When we’re in the U.S we always stock up at REI but in the UK, Mountain Warehouse is our favourite place to get reasonable priced and durable hiking gear. It’s normal for both of us to be dressed head to toe in their stuff and it’s the one place we can’t seem to stay frugal in.
We are not financial advisers and people should always make sure financial products are ideally suited to them personally. Having said that, we do get asked a lot about how we manage our money on the road and the products below are the best we’ve found in the UK market if you travel a lot.
We’ve had a Halifax Clarity card since 2010 and it’s still the best way to spend overseas in our opinion. It’s a MasterCard and doesn’t charge for use in any country. Just make sure you pay the bill in full every month and you won’t incur any charges. The clarity card does charge for cash withdrawals however, which brings us onto the next option.
Barclaycard Platinum Travel
The Barclaycard Platinum Travel card is a fairly new addition for us. It’s our new method of withdrawing cash overseas since our specialist travel bank account has ceased trading. The Platinum Travel card is a Visa (so it gets a slightly worse exchange rate than MasterCard) and it is offering no fees on transaction and cash withdrawals until 31st August 2022 – so it’s the perfect card to use when you need cash. Again with this one, you need to make sure it’s paid off in full every month to avoid fees.
Charles Stanley Direct
ISA investing is still a fairly new aspect of Maddie’s savings portfolio which is why Charles Stanley Direct is the perfect platform. If you have less than £25,000 in your ISA the platform fees are currently the cheapest on the market, so it’s perfect for most people when they are newby investors. It can be nerve-wracking venturing into investing but Charles Stanley makes it incredibly easy with their platform.
When getting started with blogging it’s always a good idea to buy your own domain and hosting straight away. Bluehost is one of the most reasonably priced and easy to set up hosting providers out there – pricing starts at just $3.95 per month.
We love Mailchimp! It’s one of the most user friendly email marketing platforms we’ve come across. We use it to send out our blog post alerts and our monthly newsletter. When you have less than 2000 subscribers you can send 12,000 emails per month completely free of charge so it’s a great option when you’re starting out.
Another great free tool that you will find indispensable if you have your own blog. Use Canva to create any type of graphic – blog header, Pinterest graphic, social image. There are countless templates to take inspiration from, it’s a fantastic tool.