Going Places is a new series from TripIt that highlights frequent travelers to showcase their unique travel styles and insider tips.
Mom. Content creator. Travel planner extraordinaire. Meet Ashley Torres: creator of the lifestyle blog Everyday Pursuits—and wearer of many hats. Ashley started her blog with the mission of helping others live their lives to the fullest. And the know-how of travel planning is a big part of that.
“Especially when you have a young family, you might think: I can’t travel right now. But you can!” she said. “I want to help other parents do that. Showing your children the world is so important.”
Ashley, her husband, and their two-year-old daughter recently spent three months in Europe; one of them at a long-term rental in Italy.
“When it comes to trips with my daughter, a vacation rental like an Airbnb is the way to go. We have our own kitchen, our own bedrooms; it makes the experience that much more enjoyable—for all of us.”
Three months away? Consider it handled (in TripIt)
Ashley details the ins and outs of planning her trips in the Travel section of her blog. She shares travel guides to the latest destinations she’s visited; tips for family travel; and much more.
Her secret weapon for staying organized? “I swear by TripIt. I forward all of my booking confirmations—planes, trains, and Airbnbs!—and it creates a seamless itinerary,” she said. “Trust me, during a three-month trip to Europe, you’re going to have a lot of bookings. And TripIt handled it all.”
After her itineraries are created, Ashley relies on TripIt to keep her on time: ”when you travel, there’s little room for error, so having all the time zones automatically synced in TripIt is so helpful”—and in the know: “on long, multi-country trips, TripIt’s COVID-19 travel guidance feature was indispensable.”
Another safety-related feature she loves? Sharing her travel plans. “I always share my plans with my Inner Circle, so my loved ones know where I am. It’s a great tool that gives everyone peace of mind.”
A growing family—and bucket list
When it comes to Ashley’s travel style, it’s evolved with her growing family.
“Before I had my daughter, I loved to travel solo. If you can do it, do it!” she advised. “You learn so much about yourself. From navigating public transportation to figuring out how to communicate despite a language barrier, I’ll always remember the pride I felt in those small accomplishments.”
And now? “Now, I’m all about family travel—which comes with its own challenges and accomplishments!”
Challenges like, going from being a carry-on-only traveler to now packing—and checking bags—for a family of three. “Traveling light with a toddler? Nearly impossible,” she quipped.
Nonetheless, Ashley has learned what works—and what doesn’t—when it comes to planning family trips. Such as, her favorite places for traveling with a little one: “Europe, in general; and Lisbon and Paris, in particular. Cities in Europe are very community-oriented and family-friendly. They have beautiful public parks and museums. They’re highly walkable. It makes a trip there so easy and enjoyable.”
Regardless of how you travel—solo, with friends, with a toddler, or something else—Ashley had a few more tips to share.
“For starters, packing cubes are life. And get the Mobile Passport Control app. There’s something very satisfying about waving to your friends who are waiting in the long lines at customs and border patrol,” she said, with a laugh.
And for the trip-planning process: “Pinterest! Once I know our next destination, I go deep—I mean, 2 AM down-the-rabbit-hole deep—into Pinterest boards.”
With a trip to Hawaii this month, a return trip to Europe planned for the spring, and an African safari on the bucket list, Ashley and her family don’t plan to stay put for long. But when she does have some down time, she’s sharing it all with her followers, including on her blog, Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
Catch up on all Going Places features to learn new travel tips, discover underrated destinations, and more.