In addition to my comprehensive spreadsheet on tracking your credit cards to help fuel your travels, this next spreadsheet is the ultimate resource to keep tabs on your travel itinerary. Planning travel can be complicated and unorganized especially with many people. Even more complicated is tracking costs among multiple people and who owes who what.
This post is part of my comprehensive guide to travel hacking where I go into detail about how I fly for free, book the cheapest flights, and how to be an overall better traveler!
Why use a spreadsheet to plan travel?
I’ll admit, there are countless Apps and services nowadays to track travel. TripIt, Google Trips, Tripify etc. all help simplify the complicated task off planning travel. Nevertheless, there is still nothing in my opinion that substitutes for a nice, professional spreadsheet that puts it all together. For as much traveling as I do, this really helps me save time!
If I am traveling solo, Google Inbox is probably enough for me as I am pretty aware of what I have planned. However, as soon as you add another person to the trip, especially someone that is lazy and useless when it comes to helping out, a spreadsheet makes everything easier. With this travel planner, you can see exactly what is happening on what days, and the costs associated with it.
The spreadsheet is made in Google Sheets so a link is all you’ll need to share it with friends. Google Sheets also allows multiple people to make edits (if that is something you want!)
Travel Itinerary Planning spreadsheet
I’ll admit, there are countless Apps and services nowadays to track travel. TripIt, Google Trips, Tripify etc. all help simplify the complicated task off planning travel. Nevertheless, there is still nothing in my opinion that substitutes for an easy to use spreadsheet that lays everything you need out in one screen.
Also, this spreadsheet is the exact itinerary and also what I used to help plan my friends amazing South Africa and Mauritius honeymoon! As it is done on Google Docs, they could access it at any point, anywhere. A perfect way for groups of travelers to make sure everyone is on the same page.
Perhaps I am old school and feel more comfortable using Excel, but I find the control and ease of use to be greater with a simple spreadsheet.
Without further ado, here is the spreadsheet. There are multiple columns associated with the spreadsheet and it’s likely I will continue to make updates to this spreadsheet as time goes on
Using The Travel Itinerary Planning spreadsheet
The spreadsheet is very easy to use. It might seem a little daunting at first if you’re not used to dealing with spreadsheets, but I assure you it is easy to use. I structured the sheet in a way so it’s very clear to see what the day to day plan is, as well as the costs associated with everything.
Itinerary Summary Sheet
The meat of this spreadsheet is done in the Itinerary Summary. I like to see my itinerary in one page, one table, and one snapshot. Therefore, planning out the entirety of the itinerary will be done in this sheet.
Each day is one row and if you need to increase the number of days in your itinerary, just copy an existing row with content, to a new row.
For the most part, it is pretty self explanatory. You can follow the columns from left to right and fill in as you go. You can also leave any unused columns blank, or insert new rows depending on your own needs.
The destinations section is where you will be located. There are two columns here, From and To. If you’re going from one destination to another destination on that day, from is where I start, and to is where I end up. If I am staying put in a place for a few days, I put the same for both.
This section is the type of transportation used to get from point a to point b. Largely, this will be either flying, or by some sort of motorized transport (rental car, bus, train, etc.). Make sure to record the cost for transportation as this all gets aggregated later.
Same as above but for accommodations including hotels, guesthouses, Airbnbs, etc.
This is the most variable section of the sheet. I could definitely add a few more columns here but for the most part, this is just to summarize what the plan is each day. This can include tours, activities, meals, where to dine, etc.
The rest of the sheets
The rest of the sheets are optional really. They are meant to store the detailed information for all the things you’ve booked already. This includes flights, hotels, car rentals, etc. This is especially useful if you are traveling for months at a time and want to keep track of how you are getting around everywhere.
In the end, I made this spreadsheet with my own tastes and flair. It won’t be the perfect spreadsheet for everyone but I think it is the best place to start and you can customize it however you like. Please leave any questions, or requests for additional features in the comments below!