Holidays comes and we try to plan for a great vacations but there is always an issue of train tickets, or spouse not getting holidays, airplane tickets not cheap, some relative coming to your house, some urgent work to be done at office etc.
I was trying to give a surprise to my wife because of her constant nagging and cribbing that I have not taken her anywhere in the last six years of our marriage. I tried to find out a destination which offers a lot of scope in terms of sightseeings, cultural heritage, wild life, sea and beach views and a modern as well as great countryside.
I went through a lot of word of mouth advices from many a friends, websites and travel guides and finally came to choose South Africa as my dream destination. South Africa offers a lot of great holidays with it's cities like Johannesburg, Durban, Cape Town & a lot of forest reserves like Kruger national park, Drakenburg Forest reserves. It has been showcased in a lot of hindi movies especially Race and Race 2 which I really loved watching.
The next step was to find out what will be the cost of tickets, hotels and food expenses so that I don't go overboard and had to eat free food in Langar at Gurudwara or Hare Krishna Temple of ISCKON afterwards. I tried looking for various apps which I searched on my ipad and HTC one. It reminded me of an app that my brother once told me about as made by Google called itasoftware. I instantly downloaded the same and tried to find the cheapest prices of airfares between New Delhi to Johanneburg. I could find some cheaper fares but could not book the tickets due to the limitations of the app. I felt really sad as the app used to show cheap price but when I did desktop search on my laptop, the prices was much more.
It reminded me to do a google search to find out an app which can do both and luckily, i found out SkyScanner and suddenly seeing it's logo it came to my mind that my wife was wearing a tshirt having the same logo, who went in one of the Indiblogger meets in Delhi and got the same. I thought of giving it a try due to my trust on Indiblogger and my wife.
The app offered me not only the lowest rates but also booked the flights for me at those rates. I could plan the lowest detail for my selected flight. It took me to it's partner website from where I could book the tickets. I kept changing the dates and found the app really fast and responsive. I could book the cheapest tickets which suited my budget from Delhi to Johannesburg via Dubai and then from Johannesburg to Cape Town. This was planned just using the app and my mobile phone.
I was very happy as I got some money saved on my tickets and booked Taj Hotel in CapeTown due to my association with TATA group and in Johannesburg, I could book Town Lodges. I got the car rented for local travel via AVIS and this all really helped me stay on my feet to roam around the country easily.
As soon as I reached Johannesburg, we went on to see the Lion & Rhino Park where my daughter played with the Cubs and Eddie the leopard. We really had fun at Sandton and Rosebank Malls. We played and won / lost a some of money in Montecasino and Emperor's palace in Johannesburg. We got to see the musical play Zingara at MonteCasino and watched Trevor Noah live in his full on comedy action. We saw Lilysleaf which is a historical place.
We trekked some mountains in Drakenburg forest reserve and saw a lot of wild life in Kruger National Park. My daughter was very happy to see Giraffe, Zebra, Antelopes, Lions, Fox, Wild beast, Ostrich,Snakes etc.
We ventured to see the village life in South Africa and enjoyed driving on the Garden Route. We did bungee jumping and a lot of other adventure sports in Durban and Cape Town including Shark cage diving, Sky jump from the airplane. We saw table mountain and Robben island, the place where Nelson Mandela spent
his 27 years in jail.
Overall it was a great time spent visiting a country which was so rich in it's wild life and cultural heritage. We bought a lot of gifts for our friends and relatives. We got Ostrich eggs with a lot of designs and other memorabilias and it was all made possible because of the tickets that we got using Skyscanner app.
You too try it out and make a lot of memories to cherish forever...
More info can be found at - http://www.skyscanner.co.in