Finding the latest currency exchange rates is easy at XE.com, and Google now offers a very simple tool that will help you convert all kinds of weights and measures (including temperature) plus weather forecasts from around the globe.
If you're interested in travel to Asia, I've found Agoda.com a great place to book a hotel. One tip: Do some research about the city you're going to visit. Identify a neighborhood that offers what you're looking for—and then book your hotel room. That's what I did when I visited South Korea last year. An inexpensive guide book pointed me to Seoul's artsy Insa-dong district, and Agoda found me an inexpensive, but comfortable, hotel in the heart of the action.
When You Need a Travel Agent
As much as I like Kayak, I have to say that if you're are planning a really complicated journey, say two continents and four or five cities, Kayak is not best. But there is a site that exists solely to help you navigate those complex skies. Airtreks.com allows you to create a route by clicking on cities located on an easy-to-read map of the world then returns a rough cost estimate.
Unlike the other resources, I'm recommending, Airtreks is a travel agency. The company will give you a free estimate via email and book your flights at no cost. If you like, take its estimate and see if another agency can beat it.
Finally, give some serious thought to your telecommunication needs on the road. Many carriers offer international roaming plans that will reduce your phone bills significantly. When you're back home, wait a month or so to be sure that the foreign carriers have billed all of your calls, and then cancel the plan. Be especially careful if you use an iPhone. Turn off the email push function (instead check manually and infrequently) or your data bills will be shockingly high. Here's a recent article that gives a good overview of using a cell phone abroad.
Have a great trip.
This story, "Holiday Travel Made Cheap and Easy — Click and Go!" was originally published by CIO.