Pebblar: Cheap, but Is It Worth Paying at All? [Our Review]
Not everyone embraces the idea of planning with open arms.
Nevertheless, we think planning is a crucial aspect of travel that helps you discover, learn, yearn for better experiences. It helps you be more prepared and focus on your upcoming journey while strengthening you as an independent traveler.
While there are many travel planner apps out there, it’s important that you find one that fits your requirements. If you are looking for an itinerary planner that lets you build your own trip as opposed to an auto-generating one, Pebblar is one of the options to consider. It boasts of being an easy and efficient tool for “DIY travelers", but is it really an easy and efficient tool? We'll be dissecting the app and giving you all the juicy deets on the app.
Editors note: Doing research on the different travel planner apps out there? We've got everything you'll need. Here's our list of the best travel planner apps out there, including our own social travel planning app. We've also done a deep dive into reviews of TripIt, Inspirock, Packpoint, and more!
In the meantime, here’s our review of Pebblar, breaking down the app's functions, features, pros/cons, and more!
What is Pebblar?
Pebblar is a collaborative travel planning platform geared towards both independent and group travelers who like to build itineraries by themselves. It kickstarted nearly three years ago under the vision of its founders Andrew Chou, John Lee, and Nan Zhou, who also happen to be ardent travelers.
With Pebblar, the planning is done on an interactive map-based interface, utilizing Google Places. It is possible to connect with travel mates in real-time and plan together, making it ideal for both leisure and business trips. You can also utilize it to store your travel information and other important documents to access them on the go.
Pebblar was only available as a web version in the beginning, but as of recently, they have dropped an app to the market as well. Pebblar mobile app supports both android and iOS devices and aims to make planning even more convenient for you.
How Does Pebblar Work?
Creating a travel plan on Pebblar is quite simple. First, you have to add a list of cities that you wish to visit. Then, you can include “places” under each city that include airports, hotels, tourist attractions, workspaces, etc. If a specific “place” isn’t available on Google Places, you can still add it by entering its name, address, photos, and other details. You can also specify the dates of visit under cities and places.
Once you have created an itinerary, you can preview it on a map and edit it whenever you want. Alternatively, you can convert it into a PDF and get it printed!
How Does Collaboration Happen on Pebblar?
For collaboration, all you have to do is add your trip mates' email addresses under the “buddies” section and invite them to take part in it. You also have to turn your itinerary to “public” so others can view it. Then, your travel partners can make necessary edits. The online status of each participant will be visible to others as well.
How Much Does Pebblar Cost?
Every new user gets a one-month free trial upon creating an account with Pebblar, and thereafter, you have to pay. Pebblar offers three payment options. If you wish to pay per itinerary, you can either pay $3 per plan with the option of adding up to 3 cities or $10 per plan with the choice of adding unlimited cities. Both of these options allow you to edit the itineraries anytime individually or collaboratively by anyone else included in the trip.
Alternatively, you also have the option of subscribing for $9.95 per month have access to create unlimited itineraries. However, you won’t be able to edit them if you cancel the subscription.
What We Like About Pebblar?
Pebblar offers a good degree of flexibility to add, change, or edit your trip whenever you want. The fact that you are not confined to the list of places available on Google Maps is a major plus. You can also create your own labels specifying the type of activity and add notes on each activity.
- Real-time collaboration
As a cloud-based platform, Pebblar enables real-time synchronization, making it easy for many people to build an itinerary together at the same time. As the edits and updates are saved in real-time, it also minimizes edit conflicts and avoids duplication of content. However, you can’t chat with your travel friends on Pebblar.
- Data privacy
At present, there’s a constant uproar on important user details being sold to third parties for profits. Pebblar pledges for keeping users' data safe, and if you are a concerned customer – that should put your heart at ease.
Image courtesy: Pebblar
What’s Not So Great About Pebblar?
Pebblar offers a set of useful but very limited features. So, if what you are looking for is a social travel planner app packed with fancy features and deals from partner brands, this is not the best choice for you.
Pebblar’s payment options aren’t the most cost-effective choices, especially if you don’t travel a lot. We also think it doesn’t offer a lot of great features to match its pricing. Its other alternatives, like Pilot are free to use!
- Lack of recommendations
With Pebblar, you are on your own. The app doesn’t provide ideas, suggestions, inspirational content, or any of that sort to optimize your trip-building experience. It would be great if it offers a chrome extension to save your trip ideas and travel content to help you brainstorm.
- Difficult to edit
Users have encountered some difficulties when it comes to rearranging the order of places in an itinerary and changing dates. In addition, the app also tends to crash sometimes when you are editing.
Is Pebblar Worth It?
Well, it depends on your preference. If you like the idea of building itineraries from scratch – alone or together with friends, Pebblar is a good option. You can always sign up for the trial version and see how it goes! However, if you like more of an automated travel planner, it may not be suitable.
Why You Need Pilot?
What if we say there’s an app similar to Pebblar, only packed with many more interesting features?
Pilot is a social travel planner that every traveler is bound to love and use for all their trips. Its collaboration feature is more streamlined with an in-built trip chat, budgeting tool, and a feature to vote on each activity. But that’s just a fraction of what Pilot has in store for wanderlusts! It offers you ultra-flexibility when planning trips and allows you to store all your important travel details in one place! Interested to know more? Subscribe to our waitlist today!
Oh, and did we also say that Pilot is also completely free of charge!!!
If you're looking for some crazy fun newsletter to inspire your next trip, we've got that as well. Check out our amazing travel newsletter: FlightDeck! Written by experienced travelers, we've got crazy fun travel stories, breaking travel news, travel tips and tricks, and much more entertainment to cure your travel bug! Sign up today.