Figuring out accommodations, finding the cheapest flight options, coordinating arrival times… there’s a lot that goes into planning group travel. That’s why planning a group trip needs a checklist. When lots of people are traveling together, it’s easy to lose track of the details. Whether you’re setting out on a European vacation, celebrating your 30th birthday with friends, or planning a Denver bachelor party, the steps are all the same!
We’ve put together a comprehensive checklist for your next group trip- check it out:
Group trip checklist
- Decide on dates
- Choose a destination
- Book a flight
- Book your accommodations
- Decide on transportation
- Plan your activities
- Make dinner/show/event reservations
- Have a plan for splitting group expenses
- Confirm the essentials are in order
Checklist items to plan a group trip
1. Decide on dates
First things first. When are you traveling? This seemingly easy first step in planning a group trip can quickly turn into a nightmare. Everyone will inevitably have something they “can’t miss” over some of the suggested dates.
That’s where Troupe makes it easy. Create a trip on Troupe.com and invite all potential travelers to join. Next, enter all the possible date options for your group vacation. Troupe will allow all travelers to vote on the dates that work best for them and all group members can see the results. Whichever date works best for the majority, lock it in! No more need for diplomacy or awkward conversations from the group trip planner.
2. Choose a destination
Perhaps the best part of the group trip planning checklist: choosing a destination! When it comes to choosing a destination, it’s the same deal with Troupe. Narrow down the options based on what works before for your group, add them all to Troupe.com, and group members can vote on their favorites. Once all travelers have voted, you’ll be able to view the winning destination and start making flight and accommodation bookings.
3. Book flights
Decided where you’re going? Congrats! Now for one of the most vital parts of the planning a group trip checklist. It’s time to find the best flights options for all travelers and click the purchase button. This is where the group trip planning gets real. Booking a flight is the ultimate sign of commitment to a group trip. Once all travelers have made that commitment, you can start looking at where you’ll stay, activities, and more.
4. Choose accommodations
Now for another fun part of the group trip planning checklist experience: picking a place to stay. Choosing the right accommodations can make or break a trip. When it comes to Airbnb vs. hotels, which one is right for you? Think about how much privacy your group will want, whether you want the ability to cook for yourselves, and what location you want to be in. And, of course, give everyone in the group a say after you narrow down the options by allowing them to vote on their favorites.
There are a couple of points during your group trip that you’ll need to think about transportation:
- How will you get to and from the airport at your origin?
- How are you getting to and from the airport at your destination?
- What will you do to get around at your destination?
Now is the time to look at the costs of carpooling to the airport and paying for airport parking vs. taking an Uber/Lyft to the airport as a group. Once you arrive at your destination, look into options for transportation to your accommodations. Not all destinations have Uber/Lyft available so you’ll want to know what a taxi should cost (ask your hotel or Airbnb host). Frequently, you can also book a shuttle through your hotel which is great for groups.
As you’re beginning to look at activities to do on your trip, think about whether the added expenses of a rental car (rental fee, gas, parking costs) are worth the benefit of having your own transportation.
5. Plan your activities
Ready to check the adventures off the lists? In Troupe’s group trip planner, group members can add notes, videos, and links to articles about all the cool things they discover at the destination. Activities can include things like free walking tours, nature walks, trendy restaurants, museums, boat trips, and more.
Depending on who you’re traveling with, whether it’s a family trip with small children or a getaway with coworkers, there are plenty of fun things to do on vacation based on your trip type.
6. Make dinner/show/event reservations
Once you have a list of possible activities to do at your destination, it’s time to get some things on the books. Narrow the items down to the ones that require reservations or advance planning and get those booked ahead of time.
7. Have a plan for splitting group expenses
When you’re traveling with a group there are sure to be plenty of shared expenses. Have a plan ahead of time to save yourself stress when you get to the destination. Some suggestions include putting one person in charge of financials, settling up as you go using Venmo, or keeping track throughout using apps like Splitwise. Learn more about splitting shared expenses here.
9. Confirm the essentials are in order
This item is intentionally ambiguous because the “essentials” are different for everyone. Is your trip international? Make sure you look into all visa/vaccination/entry requirements. Do you have pets? Are you hiring a pet sitter or are they staying at a kennel?
Here are a few essential items to consider before a group trip:
- Arrange a pet sitter/kennel stay or make sure you understand airline rules for traveling with pets
- Look into visa requirements at your destination
- Get any necessary or suggested vaccinations before traveling to certain countries
- Think about anything that might need to be done at your home while you’re away (plant sitter, etc.)
- Are everyones passports up-to-date with at least 2 blank pages?
- Purchase travel insurance
- Notify your bank/credit card company of your travel plans
- Unplug electronics in your home
- Clean out anything that may spoil from your fridge
- Put a hold on your mail delivery
- Look into an international plan for your cell phone
Planning a group trip doesn’t have to be stressful. Take everything step by step and use an app like Troupe to help you collaborate easily with the rest of your group. Once you’ve got everything checked off your group vacation checklist, sit back and start getting excited for your adventure!