I travel quite a bit for work. Whenever you travel a whole lot of information is generated that often comes in the form of various emails or pieces of paper. I’m the type of person who likes to stay organized without spending too much time or effort on organization. Certain tools and apps help me accomplish this. The tool I use for travel is Kayak.
One of the main selling features of Kayak is that it will automatically generate a travel itinerary for you. After establishing an account, all you have to do is forward any booking-related emails to firstname.lastname@example.org and it will intelligently populate an itinerary for you.
For example, if you were headed to New York and booked a flight on American Airlines, a Marriott hotel and a rental car from Hertz, you simply forward each confirmation email you receive to Kayak. Kayak will then parse our the data from each email and populate a custom itinerary. It will usually name each itinerary for your destination, but you can change the name to something else if you want to. You can then use the Kayak app as your sole source of travel information. It will even automatically update your flight status in the event of a delay or a cancellation. You can even push your itinerary out to your Google Calendar so that you have a separate travel calendar. You can then share this calendar with your family, assistant or colleagues so they always know the important details about your travel information.
The key benefits of this approach are that I never have to waste time hunting through my inbox hunting for travel-related emails. I have all the information in one place. This is useful to me both when I travel and after I travel. For example, from time to time I will need to know the exact dates or information from a certain trip. All I need to do is login to Kayak and look through my trip archive. All the information is right there. You could also use it for travel expense reporting, as all the email receipts are kept in one place.
Kayak also lets you add trip details through their booking service or even manually. However, it’s the email to Kayak service that I end up using most frequently. I’ve been impressed with how smart Kayak is with some pretty cryptic emails I have sent in over the years. It rarely gets tripped up. In summary, if you are a person on the go who wants to stay organized with little extra effort, you should take a look at Kayak Trips. It’s like having your own personal assistant without the cost (it’s free). Go to Kayak.com/Trips for more details.