Today I had a (virtual) chat with a guy called Paul Johnson. He’s the editor of one the biggest luxury travel websites out there, A Luxury Travel Blog. I wanted to share his top tips for travel in 2019…
What are the top destinations to visit in 2019 and why?
I think Tokyo will be a great place to visit this year. 2019 will be a huge year for Tokyo, with the Rugby World Cup and the Olympics soon after. So much is happening in the city right now, and it’s always an amazing cultural experience for any first time visitor.
Tell me about your all time favourite travel experience.
I have been fortunate enough to enjoy many different and amazing travel experiences that I couldn’t possibly pick just one. Among them, though, would be seeing the Great Migration in Tanzania, a helicopter ride over Lithuania’s old capital of Trakai and eating at a sushi restaurant in Tokyo that could accommodate just eight diners.
What tips do you have on getting the best holiday for your money?
One of the biggest myths about luxury travel is that it’s only for the super rich. Of course, what one person sees as affordable can be extravagant to another but, even with this aside, there are many ways to make luxury travel much more affordable than you might have possibly imagined.
Look to travel off peak, book well in advance or at the very last minute and make the most of loyalty schemes, such as air miles. Also, planning the trip out yourself can work out cheaper, but don’t dismiss using a travel agent – many will have special relationships with properties.
And any tips for finding the best place to stay?
The key is to do as much research as possible.
I don’t believe it’s necessary to book through an agent, although there can be some added perks by doing so.
Whilst it might serve as a guide, I also don’t think star ratings are the ‘be all and end all’ – some star ratings are self-accredited. No national tourist board has a classification system that goes beyond five stars and yet there are ‘seven star’ hotels out there. Meanwhile, some stunning properties choose not to be part of a national grading system.
It’s really a case of doing your own research – reviews might help with this, as might other indicators, but you should also use these with a touch of caution.
A Luxury Travel Blog features the finer aspects of travel, with information on the most luxurious hotels and resorts, the finest restaurants, as well as essential travel industry news.