Travel Brands I Love
As a frequent traveler, I occasionally get questions about the travel brands, hotels, gear, and tools I love and use regularly. I feature many of the brands I recommend on my blog, either organically, through a partnership, or via an affiliate link. Affiliate links essentially mean that, if you make a purchase through a specific link on my blog, I earn a small commission for helping to make the sale, at no additional cost to you.
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Find all my travel brand and product recommendations below!
HOTELS, HOSTELS, & OTHER ACCOMMODATIONS
Whenever I can, I prefer to book direct on a hotel’s website. However, when it comes to comparing flexible cancellation terms and amenities, I always appreciate how easy Booking.com makes the research process when I’m looking for a place to stay. Booking.com allows you to make many reservations without a credit card too, giving me extra peace of mind. And, they offer genius member discounts of up to 15% off the best available rate if you’re a consistent Booking.com user. This is why you will find Booking.com links utilized in several of my hotel reviews.
Another similar hotel booking platform is Hotels.com. What’s great about Hotels.com is that they have a Best Rate Guarantee and offer free cancellation on most hotels. It’s definitely worth using more than one booking site to compare prices!
Hostelworld is a massive booking website for hostels and budget accommodations worldwide, boasting 36,000 properties in 170 countries. The website also attracts millions of verified guest reviews, which is crucial for comparing hostel and budget accommodations to make sure you get the best option and price.
HipCamp is a booking website specifically for camping in the US. The campsites listed on HipCamp are privately owned ranches, farms, vineyards, nature preserves, and even public campgrounds, all provided in an easy-to-use format that allows you to filter for the exact outdoor experience you crave. Use my link to save $10.
The Getaway House
The Getaway House is a series of self-catering mini cabins located at outposts outside of major cities across the USA. These cabins allow you to escape from the hustle and bustle of the city, unplug, and enjoy the outdoors. The best part? You get a comfy bed, a beautiful view, a kitchen, and AC/heat, too. Use code OFFDUTY for $25 off.
FAVORITE PLACES I’VE STAYED AROUND THE WORLD:
ACTIVITIES, DAY TRIPS, & GROUP TRAVEL
Contiki is a leading group travel company that specializes in trips for 18-35 year olds. They’ve been around since 1962, and today they offer more than 300+ trips of varying lengths and price points across 6 continents. If you’re newer to international travel, a solo traveler, or just someone looking for a good time with new friends in an epic place, I’d recommend looking into Contiki! Use code CONTIKIRACH100 for $100 off.
Legit Trips is a group travel company that offers flexible, community-focused trips with like-minded travelers across the globe. Some of their most popular destinations are Cuba, Belize, Morocco, and Australia, but they constantly change up and add new itineraries all the time! I’ve met some incredible people on Legit Trips adventures over the years. Use codes LEGITRACHEL25 (for $25 off 2-4 day trips) and LEGITRACHEL50 (for $50 off 5+ day trips).
Intrepid is another leading group travel company that offers trips in all 7 countries (yes, including Antarctica!). They are the world’s largest travel B-corp, and their emphasis is in providing responsible, ethical small group adventures. I love what Intrepid stands for and I think you will too.
Get Your Guide
Get Your Guide is a solid resource for day trips, activities, and short excursions. Their customer service is awesome, they have a free cancellation policy, and you can find reliable tours available for booking in cities all over the world.
Tripadvisor is a great resource for aggregating recommendations, and comparing deals. I also usually cross-reference TripAdvisor reviews with Yelp and Booking.com before I make any travel decisions.
Owned by Tripadvisor, Viator has a massive library of trips, activities, hotels, and airline deals. The main difference in my opinion between Viator and Get Your Guide is cancellation policy. Viator requires customers to cancel 7 days in advance for a full refund, while Get Your GUide only requires a 24-hour notice. Again, always good to refer to more than 1 site to compare!
Go City is your pass to discounted access to museums, cruises, theme parks, and more in over 20 cities around the world. All you have to do is choose your destination, select how many days you’d like to use a pass while on your trip, and go! Go City offers a Go Oahu pass that I often recommend for first-time travelers to Oahu, where I’m from, because of all the discounts you can find on top attractions like the Polynesian Cultural Center, water sports rentals, and catamaran cruises. Other popular Go City destinations include Los Angeles, Paris, Cancun, and New York!
Travel Packing and Gear
Amazon Basics Luggage
When the hard-shell suitcase trend started to gain popularity, I wanted an option that wouldn’t cost me an arm and a leg (especially since suitcases get thrown around and ruined all the time!). I’ve been using Amazon Basics ever since, and have had no complaints. Use my Amazon link to shop the luggage I use below.
Packing solutions for travelers and the outdoorsy. I love their packing cubes, backpacks, and duffels.
CLOTHING, ACCESSORIES, & GIFTS
Timeless, wrinkle-resistant, stain-resistant, travel-friendly wardrobe staples for on-the-go women. Their pants are some of the most comfortable I’ve ever worn! Use code RACHEL10 for 10% off.
I’ve been a longtime fan of prAna. They’re a California-based company with activity-focused clothing (think yoga, climbing, swim, and travel) designed and manufactured using sustainable processes.
The Wander Club
The Wander Club lets you choose tokens from any country, state, national park, or continent and wear them around your neck, or on a keychain! My necklace includes 5 very special countries to me – Australia, Italy, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Mexico.
Crated With Love
Crated With Love is a brand specializing in unique date night boxes you can do with your significant other. My personal favorite is their You + Me in Yosemite box, which is perfect for travel lovers! Use code RACHELOFFDUTY for $5 off.
Tinggly is a fantastic concept I wish I thought of first! This brand enables you to give the gift of experiences around the world. By paying for an experience box upfront, you unlock all kinds of experiences around the world that your gift recipient can choose from and enjoy without paying a single cent. I’ve used Tinggly to go on a day trip to Rocky Mountain National Park with a local company, and had a fantastic time!
Flights, Cars, & Transportation
Kayak is a solid resource for aggregating recommendations and comparing deals specifically for flights, hotels, and rental cars around the world. Kayak is usually the first place I go when I’m looking at car rental prices for different cities.
Skyscanner is a popular service that aims to connect travelers with the best flight deals. Skyscanner is really fun for daydreaming, too – don’t know where to go? Select “Everywhere” as your destination when researching flights and let Skyscanner tell you the cheapest places to travel based on your home airport!