How To Research Smarter For Your Next Trip

Although there are many travel books and guides out there to help with planning my next adventures, I always go back to Instagram as my main source of destination research! Not only is this social media app great for sharing visuals and inspiration, I found that it is also one of the best ways to plan your trips. Now there is a strategic way of doing your research and planning smartly so I have shared some tips on how to do just that… you can thank me later!

Here’s how to research smarter for your next trip and maximise the use of Instagram:

Curate your feed.
Thinking about visiting the famous Kawasan falls of Cebu, or the startling beaches on Phi Phi island? The discover page on Instagram is a great way to find travel experts or digital nomads that document their amazing travel adventures. Take some time to follow instagrammers you like and start curating your feed through travellers and places that inspire you to visit in the future.

I could stay here forever #sunandsea

A post shared by Joyce Hadiwibawa (@joycehadiwibawa) on

Use the bookmark
Ever since Instagram implemented this feature, my private bookmarks library has been filled with many new places I’ve added to my travel bucket list from travel insiders that I trust and follow religiously. This feature allows you to save images of places that people have been to for future reference when you plan your next trip.

Find accurate photos
Travelling accounts, professional photographers and bloggers often post edited photos with colour and contrast alterations. So before you go to your destination, take advantage of Instagram’s hashtag search function or the geo location tags, this will allow you to scroll through real; unfiltered images of the destination taken by other instagrammers for a more accurate representation of the places you want to go to. This will help you decide whether your travel destination is truly worth your time, money and effort.

Reminiscing the hotter days in Croatia…

A post shared by Joyce Hadiwibawa (@joycehadiwibawa) on

Still dreaming about this place ?

A post shared by Joyce Hadiwibawa (@joycehadiwibawa) on

Discover insider eats
If you know me, food is a very big part of what makes a trip! From your curated feed of travellers, pay attention to where people are tagging their meals. This will make life so much easier when you have a well-planned restaurant list, guaranteeing to also please your palette. No one wants to hang around a hangry tourist.

Early morning breakfast done right ✨?

A post shared by Joyce Hadiwibawa (@joycehadiwibawa) on

Asian eats #mamasan

A post shared by Joyce Hadiwibawa (@joycehadiwibawa) on

Ready your packing list
Unsure what to pack on vacation? Scroll through your destination’s geotag location in the discover page to see what other travellers were wearing. This will also give you an indication of what to take with you before you pack. When you’re not sure if you need a light sweater or rain boots, be sure to check Instagram for “real time” weather images to the best of your advantage.

Is this view even real? One of the many charms in Hvar ?

A post shared by Joyce Hadiwibawa (@joycehadiwibawa) on

Finally, book your tickets and just have fun!
Once you have all your flights booked, you’ve already finished the hard parts. Don’t stress and enjoy the moment with your loved ones or by yourself!

We're just so excited to be here, can't say it's summer without jumping into the sea ?

A post shared by Joyce Hadiwibawa (@joycehadiwibawa) on

Have you heard about other great travel planning hacks? I would love to know your tips in the comments!




  1. July 30, 2017 / 11:32 pm

    Curating the feed is a very good idea, I will try that. Have you considered adding a health section for those who might need to get vaccinations, medications?

  2. July 30, 2017 / 11:41 pm

    Super smart tips. I love the reminer to look at real photos!

  3. July 31, 2017 / 5:33 am

    More than useful advices! 🙂 I always use Instagram for a help 😀

  4. July 31, 2017 / 7:49 pm

    I haven’t really used instagram for planning except just for looking at photos and then suddenly pointing a finger on it and say ‘im going there!’
    Nice tips!

  5. July 31, 2017 / 7:56 pm

    What a great tip to use IG hashtag search function. I never thought of that! I will definitely be using it in the future.

  6. July 31, 2017 / 8:53 pm

    Yes!! I love instagramfor planning trips.

  7. August 1, 2017 / 3:09 am

    Instagram is such a great help when planning. I always use it when going somewhere new if I want ideas of places to see in a destination

  8. August 1, 2017 / 12:29 pm

    Great tips on using IG to plan your trip! I am about to use that for my trip this week. You are right – food is definitely a big part of the trip.

  9. August 2, 2017 / 2:36 am

    TBH I also plan up my holiday with the help Instagram. It’s gives out a realistic idea and also keeps your expectations at bay. Well composed post.

  10. August 2, 2017 / 4:37 am

    Your photos are incredible, and great advice! What do you use to edit your photos/ what filter?

  11. kristelle
    August 2, 2017 / 8:12 pm

    instagram really push me to travel. all my feeds are about wanderlust inspirations

  12. August 4, 2017 / 2:48 am

    Instagram is really a great source to discover new places and exciting things to see – great advice here – thanks 🙂

  13. October 16, 2017 / 3:03 am

    Such great ideas and tips. I will definitely try to bear your tips in mind! I will definitely follow your suggestions when I am planning my next trip!

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