Oh hey it’s my third blog post and I have yet to stick to one topic or computer program. WHOOPS.

Anyway, HI EVERYONE and welcome to the third installment of Tech Tuesday with Grant Cushman. Today I’m going to be talking about a program that has been my invaluable sidekick since little baby first year Admission Counselor Grant Cushman first entered into this wonderful profession: TripIt.

If you’re in my position right now, then you are in the midst of the ever-rewarding and grueling staple of the Admission Cycle: travel season; and if you’re anything like me, then you rely on your electronics now more than ever.   My phone calendar is my portal to what school I’m visiting next, what hotel I’m staying at tonight, what car company I booked my rental through, and what airport will send me to my next destination.  With all of these different time-sensitive pieces of information it’s imperative to keep everything succinct and organized. Unfortunately, organization has never come second-nature to me; so I’ve had to use my wit and resources to organize my data in my own way. That’s where TripIt comes in.

TripIt, as they define it, is a travel organizer that amalgamates all relevant travel information into one succinct and beautiful calendar. Unlike a lot of the programs that I’ll be talking about on this blog, this one is pretty simple and doesn’t really have too many layers to it–which makes it that much more appealing to a professional like me. TripIt gathers your travel itinerary automatically from confirmation emails and puts it on a calendar; the calendar then links to any of the major calendar applications (iCal, Outlook, Google, etc.). Like all applications that I love, it collects data that already exists and puts it in the right spot without me having to do anything outside of the initial set up.  And here’s how you do it:

Step One:

Sign up with TripIt. You simply put whatever email you generally have confirmation emails sent to and watch TripIt do its magic. (Protip: I send my confirmations to my personal email because outlook has an extremely sensitive spam blocker and these emails can get lost in the malware shuffle.)

Step Two:

There is no step two you bozos. What do you think this is? A detailed list of instructions?

One step and out. Once you sign up with TripIt and tell it which email you have confirmation emails sent to it will grab that data and put it on a calendar which you can use at your leisure. Well, I suppose that would be the real step two.

(The Real) Step Two:

Export the Calendar.  Go onto TripIt, find the Organization section, click Calendar integration, and copy that calendar into your application of choice (see below),

Step 2

You can import your TripIt itinerary into any of your calendar applications, such as Outlook, so it will look a little something like this:

Calendar App

(Now you all can see where I stayed last week. Please don’t retroactively stalk me.)

Now realize the beauty of TripIt- I didn’t create this calendar at all; TripIt grabbed all relevant information from confirmation emails and put them chronologically on this calendar. Now whenever I need to find the address to my hotel- Done. Can’t remember your airline confirmation code? BAM- in the Calendar. Forgot where the rental car return place is? Stop looking through your emails you bozo- it’s on the calendar.

TripIt has a slew of other features that you can explore, but a lot of them take a great deal of investment and, to me, seem superfluous to what I need in a travel organizer. You can find your itinerary on their iPhone or Android app too but I don’t use them too much since all of the data I need is put on the calendar which is automatically linked to my work calendar.

Basically the moral of this long and horribly organized Blog post is that if you are traveling this Fall and aren’t using TripIt (or something like it), then quit being a bozo and get on it. It has an amazingly low learning curve and it’s just filtering data that is already sent to you automatically. It will remove a bit of the headache from travel season so you have more time to figure out where all of the Starbucks are in between your school visits.