Going Places is a new series from TripIt that highlights frequent travelers to showcase their unique travel styles and insider tips.
For Manya Agrawal, freelance content creator and influencer, travel is more than discovering beautiful, new places. It’s also about completely immersing herself in the culture, meeting new people, and trying the local cuisine.
“I’m from a small town in India. I grew up in a very traditional household, and it wasn’t acceptable for me—a single woman—to travel. So it wasn’t until after I graduated university and had my own job that I started traveling,” Manya told me. “Since then, I haven’t stopped exploring.”
And she hasn’t stopped sharing her love for travel either. Manya has nearly 100,000 Instagram followers—and she regularly shares her trips, travel tips, and more with this community.
“On Instagram, I share everything from how to plan a trip—flights first; accommodations and activities later—to how to travel on a budget,” she said. “I want to help people plan trips they didn’t think they could afford (but they can)! Whether it’s taking advantage of a stronger currency, or visiting an under-the-radar destination within their own country, there’s always a solution.”
As for planning her own trips, Manya prefers traveling with friends or family to traveling solo—though she’s done a bit of everything.
“I like to travel with a few friends or a group. It’s all about making memories together—and it helps to have others to share costs with, as well,” she said. “I also prefer to have someone with me to help deal with the unexpected.”
How to plan, prepare, and find Nearby Places
Speaking of dealing with the unexpected, Manya shared that she loves the ease of creating itineraries in TripIt—and the myriad features that help her plan and prepare for a trip, as well as when she’s on the go.
“I’m a huge fan of the Nearby Places feature. It saves me so much time when I’m traveling to not have to research, say, a restaurant near the hotel I’m staying at, or search for a cafe for a cup of tea.”
Whether she’s traveling with a group or solo, Manya leans on TripIt’s plan-sharing feature to keep everyone in the know about her upcoming trips. She also relies on TripIt’s COVID-19 travel guidance feature to help her stay up to date on travel restrictions and requirements. And as someone who always has a bag packed for a quick trip—she’s off to the scenic mountain towns of Himachal, India next—being prepared for what to expect at her destination plays a key role in her trip going as planned.
In addition to TripIt, Manya uses Instagram (and social media, in general) to plan what to do at her destination. “Instagram is my go-to for planning things to do, foods to try, places to visit, and more,” she said. “I then add all of my plans to my TripIt app, so everything is organized in one place.”
On her number one bucket-list destination
While Manya has spent a considerable amount of time exploring her own backyard since COVID-19—and sharing her perspective on those places on her Instagram—she dreams of getting back to exploring further afield.
The number one place Manya hopes to see in her lifetime? “Antarctica! It would require me to cross half the world—including plane rides and ferry rides—but it would be worth it,” she said. “I’m a nature-lover and an animal-lover, so Antarctica would just be a dream trip for me.”
And for someone who loves to plan, prepare, and share her adventures as much as Manya, I have no doubt she’ll get there.
Want even more travel inspo? Catch up on all of our Going Places features.