How to Use Evernote to Organize Your Vacation Plans

The following is a guest post from regular contributor, Sharon at Mom of 6.

This summer I’m planning something bold, daring, and a little bit over-the-top! I’m going to take my six kids on a 4-week 8000-mile road trip out to see “the Great American West”! We’re planning on heading from New York out to Colorado and then onto Wyoming, Utah, Arizona, Missouri and back. It’s going to be an amazing experience- but boy do I need to be organized to pull something like this off!

So today I want to share with you one of my very favorite tools that I use all of the time to store ideas, make lists, and keep notes. But specifically I want to show you how I use this tool to organize all of my vacation plans- reservation confirmations, itinerary and all of those important details. This fabulous tool is called Evernote, and it is FREE! Evernote is available for desktops as well as mobile devices like smartphones and tablets- and the best part is that all of your information “syncs to the cloud” so it is available to you anywhere at anytime! Which is what make it the perfect application to store all of the information that you’ll want to have organized for your vacation! Let me show you how it works:

How-to-Use-Evernote-to-Organize-Your-Vacation-Plans

What is Evernote?

Simply put- Evernote is a notes-taking, notes-saving application that allows you to create new notes by typing them, cutting and pasting them from a website or an email, adding a photo, recording a voice message, even saving a PDF file. Each of these items can be created as a note in Evernote and then your notes can be organized into folders just as you would notes written on paper and placed into a filing cabinet at home. Carley Knobloch from Digitwirl shared this video here on OrgJunkie a while back that does a great job explaining all that Evernote can do for you.

Using Evernote to Store Your Vacation Plans

Evernote for Vacation Planning

Start by creating a separate notebook within Evernote and name it “Vacation Plans” or “Florida Trip”, etc. Then create a new note for each segment of your trip. On our big “Go West” trip, we’ll be staying in 12 different places, so I created a note for each one. Here is what I have found to be helpful to include in my travel plan notes:

Distance To Travel:

At the top of the page I like to list the distance to our destination both in miles and in hours. This helps me to prepare everyone for just how long we will be in the car. I also include a link to the MapQuest route that I intend to take. I like to have this as a backup set of instructions in case the GPS in our car decides to act a little wonky.

Time Zone of Our Destination:

So when we call Daddy back home to “check in”, we will know what the time difference is. And maybe not call him at 4am (at least by accident anyway!) I use Time and Date to gather my information.

Temp / Forecast:

I’ve made a note to the average daily temperatures in the city that we will be in (for packing purposes) and I also add a link to weather.com‘s five-day forecast for that location, so it is uber-simple for me to click on the link and see an updated weather forecast.

Hotel Information:

I have a section where I record all of the hotel information, which I copy and paste right from my hotel confirmation email that I received back when I made the hotel reservation. I like to have all of these details at hand- what time check-in is, any notes regarding what type of unit that I reserved, how many beds and bed configuration, and what the cancellation policy is. I also created a series of check-boxes regarding amenities I want to be aware of at each hotel: Is there a pool (indoor or outdoor)? Is there a washer and dryer available? Is there free Wi-Fi? Ice machines on the premises?

What to Carry In:

I’ve included a section as to what I want to remember to carry into the hotel when we arrive. Because in many places we will be staying for just one night and all I really need to take to the room is our bag of clothes for the next day, a pajama bag and a toiletries bag. Other times I will want to remember to carry in a sleeping bag for a child, extra pillows etc.- depending on the room configuration.

Itinerary:

A list of things to see and do while in this location! And if I’ve made a reservation for an attraction in advance, copies of that confirmation number will be here. I will also include directions, operating hours, and any notes to myself about don’t-miss things to do at that attraction!

To Do List:

I hate to admit it- but even on vacation I keep a to-do list. Do I need to laundry here? Stop at the grocery store (and of course, my running grocery list will be a separate note here in Evernote!), prep breakfast or lunch for the next day? Call ahead to confirm a reservation? All of those notes will be created as a checklist here.

So what do you think? Could Evernote help you to get your vacation plans organized? (Or better yet- do you think I am crazy for taking on a road trip of this magnitude?) Leave a comment today with your thoughts!

Sharon Rowley Head Shot 150 x 150 Thumbnail If you get a chance, I hope you’ll stop by to see me at Momof6 – a place where I write about organizing your home, using a family calendar, creating household routines, hosting at-home birthday parties, and holding a DIY summer camp! You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter (@sharonmomof6), and Pinterest!

 

 

 

 

Linking up: Today’s Creative Blog and Skip to my Lou and A Bowl Full of Lemons

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Comments

19 Responses to How to Use Evernote to Organize Your Vacation Plans

  1. 2
    Barbara says

    What a great idea! And I think you are a little crazy for going on a road trip with 6 kids, but that’s what makes it fun!

  2. 3
    Rachel@Useful Beautiful Home says

    Excellent idea! I love Evernote but never thought of using it to arrange vaca details. Brilliant! How do you access it on the road (laptop, smartphone, pre-printed)?

  3. 4
    Working Mom says

    I never heard of Evernote–I’ll have to check it out this weekend. Thanks for the information!

  4. 5
    The Lazy Indian Cook says

    We use TripIt for organizing our travel. Just forward all you reservation/ticket emails to it and it will populate all the map/weather information for you. I’ve been using it for a couple of years and absolutely love it!

  5. 6
    Tragic Sandwich says

    I do this even for shorter trips–Evernote is such a great tool!

    FYI, the best apple pie I ever had was in Lusk, Wyoming. Sadly, I can’t remember the name of the coffee shop. And that was close to 25 years ago, so who knows if it’s even still there, or has the same cook? But I’d be willing to try to find it if we ever got to that part of the country again.

  6. 7
    Crystal says

    I have never heard of Evernote, but I’m going to take a look at this weekend. Do you use it for other uses other than trips?

  7. 8
    Christine says

    This came at the perfect time. We have a 2.5 wk vacation coming up and I have loads of emails with confirmations, etc. I also have Evernote, but just didn’t think to use it this way. (Yes, big DUH moment)
    Thanks!!

  8. 9
    Lyn says

    We just took a similar trip last year. I used tripit to organize. Be careful about relying on cell connections to get your maps -( I saw that you are linking to mapquest) In parts of WY , UT and NM, it was hot or miss on the cell connection I think the kids enjoy printed maps anyway. We made sure to grab state maps from AAA and the kids spent a lot of time figuring out where we were and what town to look for next. Some of the more “boring” drives (kid world) were from the Tetons into Salt Lake and from Salt Lake down to Cedar City (to see Zion and Bryce), also from the Grand Canyon to Mesa Verde was rather drab.

    Having it all on my phone on the trip it app was great, but at times having the paper in my trip folder came in handy.

    It was an amazing trip for our family. I hope your family has just as much fun as ours did.

  9. 10
    Janie Gentry says

    I think your trip with your children is a great idea. I used to travel with my two when they were preteens, and we always had a marvelous time; We didn’t have cell phones or computers back then, so we used an atlas and planned our routes on paper. Evernote sounds wonderful.

  10. 11
    Jill says

    What a great idea!! I’ll be using this for our upcoming vacation!

    *side note: if you can make the time for a stop in Nebraska, Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo is Phenomenal! It’s very large & will take a day. We’ve been to several zoos (including San Diego) and we like Omaha the best. They also have a drive-through wildlife park west of the city. Something my son enjoyed was the Strategic Air Command museum. (Also west of the city). Enjoy your drive!!

  11. 12
    Michelle Stewart says

    I also use Evernote for recipes and in general as a notebook. AWESOME idea of traveling! I live in Missouri and believe it or not, there are tons of historical and fun places to visit. What memories your children will have!

  12. 13
    JessZ says

    Thank you so much for the info! I downloaded Evernote and I am working on putting in all our data. We are also traveling for the first time from WI out west. In 11 days we have a ton to try and get in. This will help us “keep it together”! Maybe we’ll see you out on the road! :)

  13. 14
    Cher Cabula says

    Oh wow, this is one use of Evernote that I’d definitely try. So far, I’ve used evernote only for notes and clippings. Thanks for the post. :)

  14. 15
    Beth says

    Love Evernote! We are planning a motorcycle trip from VA to the West and Evernote is keeping me organized from packing lists to routes to points of interest.

  15. 16
    Julie says

    I use Evernote for everything. Love it love it.

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