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Riviera dev work hard, travel hard


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Want to make the most out of your vacations? Us too! The first time we went on holidays with my wife, we miserably failed to organize it. We lacked information, plans and plan B. We wasted so much time, we almost missed some reservations, we never ever wanted to live through the same experience again.

Since then we developed and fine-tuned our techniques not just to find great quality/price accommodations, but to find cheap and at the same time great local excursions, to avoid tourist traps and to plan our days so that we can make the most out of them always keeping some options open just in case something goes wrong or we just simply finish a bit quicker than expected.

This might sound exaggerated, but even according to those friends and colleagues who visited the same places as we did, planning vacations as we do works pretty well!

Come to my presentation if you never thought that you can enjoy a Michelin starred lunch in Tokyo just for about 10 Euros!

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Riviera dev work hard, travel hard

  1. 1. Work hard, travel hard Gain everlasting experiences each time you travel @SandorDargo 17th May 2018, RivieraDEV
  2. 2. Agenda Who am I? How we used to travel How we progressed Showcase(s)
  3. 3. Who am I Sándor DARGÓ Software developer in Amadeus Obsessed clean coder Enthusiastic blogger Passionate traveller Happy father of two
  4. 4. How I used to travel Beach holidays with some organized day tours as a kid The same open university every summer with friends Alone? Never, but I planned to...
  5. 5. How my wife used to travel Same beach every year in Bulgaria Cheapest organised travel in Turkey Became a budget traveller at university
  6. 6. London - Our first common trip Organisational nightmare Unprepared Starved Budget inferno
  7. 7. Paris - The other extreme Overprepared Well-fed Reasonable budget Extremely tired
  8. 8. Which style do you prefer? Wandering around in London vs Purposeful Week in Paris? Ignore the time it takes to organize it
  9. 9. Which style was better for us? Paris! - More tiring - Less frustrating - Seen so much - Feeling accomplished Still not ideal, had to find the golden mean
  10. 10. How to organise your holidays without losing up all your time, yet leaving almost no (bad) surprises
  11. 11. Decide where you want to go Have a few places in mind Check dates, routes, fares, hotel rooms, but not in detail Pick one, 3-6 months in advance
  12. 12. Get familiar with your destination Search & read without too much detail Articles Guides Free itineraries Create a map on MyMaps
  13. 13. Look for a place to stay at Check some hotel booking sites Make a map based search too Look for free cancellation & feel free to book many Set alarms to cancel extra rooms Check Mummy Sherpa’s blog for more info
  14. 14. Fill your calendar Review What you find interesting What is in your budget What is too long What is too far Don’t mind if it’s too much - for the moment Know you needs and habits
  15. 15. Deep planning - When? How? How much? Enrich your calendar with relevant information Have alternatives Learn to skim sources quickly Contact places for information in advance Check for local extremes
  16. 16. Cancel the excess and book the rest Cancel the unnecessary hotels Book your car Off season -> at the end. Price goes down.. High season -> in the beginning. Price goes up.
  17. 17. Pack your stuff Choose your suitcases wisely Pack wisely, pay attention to differences in hand luggage sizes. Think about how your luggage will change on the go Don’t overcommit. It’s not that important who you’ll look like at the hotel. Have checklists!
  18. 18. Some useful tips Have a data pack! Prepare your mobile with apps! But print a few docs! Don’t assume, read! Learn a few words! Be flexible when you think! Your time is expensive! Ask. KISS! Use alternative communication.
  19. 19. Showcase 1 - Japan
  20. 20. Japan - Decide where to go Wanted to go to the Far-East Looked for multi-destination trips: HKK + Philippines; Japan; Vietnam Possibly to include another city Booked route: NCE - IST - KIX - NRT - IST - NCE Searched for hotels, seen that won’t make Kyoto as a base. Too expensive….
  21. 21. Japan - Get familiar with your destination Read some articles, talked to knowledgeable friends Confirmed how to book the transportation Learnt to use their timetable
  22. 22. Japan - Look for a place to stay at Booked the hotels, multiples ones Sometimes at different parts of the city
  23. 23. Japan - First problem to solve Cancelled route by airline -> Cancelled ticket Rebooked with another airline with a break in Dubai Swapped the order of visit in Japan
  24. 24. Japan - Fill your calendar and deep planning Slowly but iteratively updated the calendar with info… Identified the Local extreme: cheap but high quality food Michelin star restaurants Green tea making Tea ceremony Beer factory visit
  25. 25. Japan - Second problem Our room in Osaka cancelled No proper replacement offered Booked a studio on AirBnb - partly free cancellation
  26. 26. Japan - Cancel the excess and book the rest Cancelled everything we had to Ordered the JR passes Just-In-Time Decided what to suitcases, backpacks we could carry Get enough cash Installed some useful apps Enjoyed it
  27. 27. Work hard, travel hard Gain everlasting experiences each time you travel @SandorDargo 17th May 2018, RivieraDEV
  28. 28. Showcase 2 - Portugal / Hungary
  29. 29. Portugal / Hungary - The decision Checked what we would be interested in before the second baby Portugal - Lisbon Portugal - Faro Napoli Sicily
  30. 30. Portugal / Hungary - Flight tickets Buy tickets with miles, miles and cash Checking car rentals
  31. 31. Portugal / Hungary - Explore your destination Populating the map Checking which city to use as a base Book hotels
  32. 32. Portugal / Hungary - Get a car and fill the calendar Book the car Decided which city to take each day Getting some information for some stays
  33. 33. Portugal / Hungary - Deep planning Found a good deal, non-refundable Cancel all the rest just on time Expand each day, clean up agendas
  34. 34. Portugal / Hungary - Hardcore packing How to pack? More difficult - as low cost Car seat needed Take into account each kilos and the pockets +2 kilos before next flight (diapers and child food)
  35. 35. Conclusion Know what you want (everything is OK) Pay for the planning? Be flexible Prepare One thing at a time Be agile, do it iteratively it’s less overwhelming
  36. 36. Work hard, travel hard Gain everlasting experiences each time you travel @SandorDargo 17th May 2018, RivieraDEV