Five Ways To Use Pinterest When Trip Planning

17.May 2012

Japan, Our Journey

Japan Board On Pinterest

I, like most people, started using Pinterest to look at pretty pictures and procrastinate from whatever I was supposed to be doing.

I am the queen of procrastination! Supposed to be cleaning the house? Look at all these beautiful decor pins! Supposed to be making dinner? Look at all these yummy food pins! Supposed to be writing a blog post? Look at all the amazing travel pins! Supposed to be going for a run? Oh…don’t look at the fitness pins because it makes me think that I’ll never look like that…may as well stay in and have another brownie. Did I tell you about that fabulous brownie recipe pin I saw?

I have, however, found it to be very useful as I plan our upcoming trip to Japan. Here are five ways to use Pinterest when trip planning:

  1. Pure Inspiration. In the beginning I searched Pinterest for any pins with reference to Japan. I was hoping to find websites and blogs that write about Japan so that I could get some personal stories of where people went, what they did and maybe even some secret hide-aways.
  2. Find Interests. Then I began pinning sites that had anything of interest to me. I didn’t sort them at all (other than pinning them to my Japan board); I was just looking to see what types of things were catching my eye. In this way I learned what parts of Japan that interested me. I could easily see that I am interested in landscapes (gardens, nature, mountains), food (all kinds of food pins!), sake, culture, and temples. It was this process that helped determine our final itinerary – find the things your interested in doing and then figure out where you can go to meet those interests.
  3. Track Accommodation Finds. I started a Japan Accommodation board. As I searched using various methods (Lonely Planet, Agoda, travel blogs, and more Pinterest) I weeded out hotels, ryokans, hostels and inns I was interested in staying in and pinned them to this board. If I included a price in the description it flagged the price for me too so I can see at a glance how one place stacks up over another.
  4. Keep Track of ‘Want To Do’s’. I haven’t yet but will soon soon start a board for each destination of our trip. On these boards I will keep track of things I want to do, or places I want to see, at each of the destinations. We may not do all of them but I can pin them as I come across them and not have to wonder where I saw that great idea.
  5. Use As A Trip Journal. In much the same way as the ‘Want To Do’ board, I will start a board for each destination detailing what we actually did in a certain place. Hotels, restaurants, sake breweries, gardens, and temples will all be recorded with details and a small review. This way I will have all the information I need to write about a place without having to search for it all again.

I love the visual nature of Pinterest. It’s much better than simply bookmarking as it reminds me of exactly why I bookmarked that page just by looking at it.

And now I have reason to be wiling away the hours searching through pins – it’s not procrastination, it’s trip planning!

You can follow me on Pinterest at: Pinterest.com/gillianduffy I’m trying to find a way to have a board that other people (like you!) could pin to also. I would love to have a ‘Japan Tips’ board for people to add to as a way of sharing a tip with me. Does anyone know how to do that?

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7 Responses to “Five Ways To Use Pinterest When Trip Planning”

  1. Nailah Says:

    Great post…I’m still figuring out how to best use Pinterest so I liked the ideas. I was in Japan last month…not sure if you’re going to Kyoto or not, but if so, check out Jam Hostel. If you’re looking for a budget place, its new and clean AND they have a well stocked sake bar on the ground floor. Enjoy your trip!
    Nailah recently posted..My Favorite Shots: Istanbul

  2. Carmel Says:

    Pinterest makes a lot of sense to me if you’re planning something. It was really helpful for me to use while planning my friend’s baby shower. I was able to visually see the pieces come together. That being said, I’m glad it wasn’t around when I was planning my wedding–I think I would have spent WAY too much money and been completely overwhelmed with choices.

    I like your ideas for trip planning. So far my travel board has just been inspiration for countries to visit.
    Carmel recently posted..Healthy White Bean, Avocado & Tuna Wraps

  3. Steph (@ 20 Years Hence) Says:

    I never had any interest in Pinterest until I started planning my upcoming RTW trip. Then I found it was the perfect way to keep track of the places I was reading about on blogs that inspired me. I haven’t gotten quite as organized as you, as I just have boards for each country with things I’d like to see, but never thought to make separate boards for things like accommodation, etc., That’s what I used Excel spreadsheets for! ;)

    Really interested to hear about what you’re planning for Japan. My husband and I are starting our year-long trip in Tokyo, and I think we’ll spend about 3 weeks in Japan before heading elsewhere (any longer would really break the budget!). Right now we know we want to see Osaka and Kyoto in addition to Tokyo, but we’re finding it hard to narrow down our other destinations.
    Steph (@ 20 Years Hence) recently posted..China Visa Woes, Oh Noes!

    • Gillian Says:

      Stay tuned Steph…I think we have our itinerary nailed and I’ll post about it soon! Definitely following you to see what you do and, of course, to follow the rest of your RTW!! Good luck!
      Gillian recently posted..Five Ways To Use Pinterest When Trip Planning

      • Steph (@ 20 Years Hence) Says:

        Cool! Can’t wait to see where you’re planning to hit. I have to make it through my dissertation defense this next week before I can turn my mind to planning Japan in earnest. It’s one of the last major hurdles I need to get through (apart from packing up our apartment and moving!) before we leave on our trip. Seems like Japan is a traveler’s paradise with many hidden gems, so it will be interesting to see how much of our itineraries wind up overlapping!
        Steph (@ 20 Years Hence) recently posted..China Visa Woes, Oh Noes!

  4. Vicky Says:

    I recently started using pinterest – mostly to pin recipes I wanted to try making at home, but lately I’ve been trying to use it for travel planning. My boyfriend and I are setting off on our backpacking trip in September and with our first stop being Japan I created a Japan board where I pin cities, sights, restaurants, accommodations that I’m interested in penciling into the itinerary. Definitely think it can be helpful in trip planning!
    Vicky recently posted..Cool Programs For Making Travel Maps