On this page, you’ll find all the travel companies I actually use and recommend, including several stand-out sustainable travel companies.
Note: Many of these are also affiliate links. That means if you click through them to make the travel bookings you’re planning to make anyway, I’ll earn a commission from the travel company. (At no extra cost to you, of course. And you’ll still have your Booking.com Genius status, and other loyalty perks with the companies.)
This is a major part of how I earn money from this website and can continue to write the detailed guides and reviews you enjoy here, so thank you for using these links!
Table of contents
Hotels & Accommodations
EcoHotels.com (+ discount)
EcoHotels.com is a new booking platform that only offers certified sustainable hotels. They have a wider range of of properties than other eco-friendly accommodation platforms (in terms of both geography and price), and they’re a small company themselves.
DISCOUNT: You can save 10% on most hotels on EcoHotels.com with the code MAP10 . This is a pretty rare opportunity to book hotel rooms even months in advance with a discount!
Booking.com is my go-to when I don’t find what I’m looking for on EcoHotels.com. I prefer Booking because it has more useful and easy-to-use filters than other hotel sites – including a filter for “Travel Sustainable Properties.”
(As always, my best tip for sustainable hotels is opt for the small, independent and locally-owned ones. So avoid the big chains on Booking.com.)
Agoda is the best booking platform for hotels in Asia – they tend to have the most selection and best prices on the continent. (You can use Agoda to book in other places, as well.)
(If you’re based in the UK, here’s Agoda’s UK site. The other links take you to the US site.)
Hotwire is useful for finding last-minute hotel deals. I find it works best in big cities in the US, and the most value tends to be when you go for a 4- or 5-star hotel in a city center and let Hotwire choose the exact property for you.
Kayak is what I use most often, because I find it to be the simplest and easiest, but that’s just my personal preference.
You can try your own comparison with the flight search engines below:
My favorite thing about Skyscanner is that it has a calendar view for comparing a whole month’s worth of flight fares – and you can filter for direct flights only. (While Kayak only shows one week at a time.)
And Skyscanner seems to search small booking sites that other flight search platforms ignore.
If you’re flexible with your travel dates (and maybe even destinations), Scott’s Cheap Flights can be a great resource. It’s a useful free email newsletter to find flight deals from your home airport.
And if you can really make plans at the drop of a hat, their paid newsletter is where you’ll find “error fares” and other extraordinary deals. (Eg: when an airline accidentally forgets a zero or two, and publishes a first-class ticket to the other side of the world for $100 instead of $10,000. Those tickets aren’t available for long, so you’ll want to be ready to book when the email comes.)
Day Trips & Tours
Get Your Guide is excellent for booking all kinds of private and group tours with local guides in Europe, North America, and around the world. It’s especially good for more off-the-beaten path destinations and smaller towns in Europe.
World Nomads is probably the best-known travel insurance company. The variety of plans isn’t huge, but they’re popular for a reason: Simplicity.
All of their plans are underwritten by Nationwide for US residents. They also insure your gear (think cameras and luggage). But their plans aren’t available for residents of all countries, so be sure to check Travel Insurance Master if you get a “no” from World Nomads.
While it’s not as well known as World Nomads, Travel Insurance Master is my go-to for several reasons: They offer more variety than World Nomads, and let you compare plans from different insurance providers side-by-side.
Plus, if you’re not the from the US, Travel Insurance Master is more likely to give you options if World Nomads can’t.
I also like that you can choose your own deductible. After selecting a plan, you can check how much of deductible you want, and it’ll automatically update the quote.
(And plans from one of their providers, Trawick International, are also underwritten by Nationwide, just like World Nomads’ plans, which makes it easy to compare between the two.)
- Note: If Travel Insurance Master says there are no plans available for your trip, try changing the “Plan Type” on the left-hand side from “Trip Cancellation” to “No Trip Cancellation.”
Sustainable Travel & Tour Companies
G Adventures is another great option for booking more sustainable and ethical trips. They offer small-group travel with a focus on positive local community impact. Impact is measured through their unique Ripple Score, which shows how much of the cost of your trip stays in the local community you’re visiting
Language Learning (Free!)
Learn a bit of the local language before you travel! Use this link for a free week of language lessons from Pimsleur.
It’s enough to at least pick up a few words or recognize a bit of what people are saying when you land. (The program focuses on listening and repeating, which makes it more useful than many other apps that basically just make you try to memorize written vocab.)
VPNs & Tech for Travel
Usually you don’t actually need a VPN to get online securely when you travel – or any other time (as I learned when I interviewed a cyber security expert for the linked post). Using a password manager is much more important – it makes your passwords unique and uncrackable (and you don’t have to remember them).
If you want to keep things simple and use the same company for everything, TunnelBear makes a password manager called RememBear. I haven’t used it, but it’s well rated and I think highly of the company.