Anyone who has ever been on a fast-paced trip knows how frustrating it can be trying to find flight details, look up directions, attractions, and airport transfers, figure out if 600 Czech Korun is a good deal on something you can get for 40 dollars in Canada, and still manage to fit in all the sightseeing you want to do without being glued to your phone trying to Google all the answers.
The right apps can give your phone superpowers! It’s all about finding the most efficient, well-rounded apps that either combine many of the tasks you’re trying to complete in one central application, or simply streamline the process and make the information you need live and accessible at all times.
Here are some of my favourite apps that really helped me out while backpacking in Europe!
This app manages flight itineraries better than anything else I’ve ever tried! When I downloaded it, it had automatically searched through the emails on my phone to find booking confirmations from airlines and programmed them into my itinerary for me. I was blown away!
From flight numbers, to airport maps, to boarding passes and more, this app stores all the information you could possibly need on the day of your flight! It even has a built-in weather app and is connected to Uber to help you quickly find a ride to or from the airport.
If you’re on a business trip, or just prefer to keep track of your expenses, you can pay $7.99/year for the receipts function that allows you to take photos of all your receipts and store them in that specific trip’s folder.
To add a new trip, you can manually enter flight numbers or simply forward your booking confirmation email to TripCase and it will show up in your app, complete with phone numbers of the airlines for each flight, PDFs of your confirmations under the documents tab, and live updates when your terminal/gate is announced or when you are able to check in online to get your boarding pass.
You can also forward any other confirmation emails for attractions, hotels, car rentals, etc. and that information will be stored in the app as well!
Now, once you’ve landed… where do you start? Some people like to research and plan their itineraries in advance, while others like to get there and figure it out as they go! If you’re the type of person who wants to be spontaneous and explore without too much planning, you may find yourself stumped for where to start once you’ve checked into your hotel and set out for the day. I usually start with a very basic Google search to learn more about the city/country, and read up on the top things to do and see, then search for deals and tickets for different excursions, tours, museum entries, etc.
Viator is my new best friend because it combines all of that in one amazing, user-friendly app! Imagine having a pocket guide to each city you’ll be travelling to without lugging around a bunch of books… that’s exactly what this app is.
There are videos with tons of information on the city and its famous sights, overviews of each attraction with popular tours and activities, special deals, verified reviews, and more! You’ll feel like an expert without wasting your time scanning through different articles and Wikipedia pages for the info you want! It’s all in one place complete with photos galore!
I personally prefer Google Maps over the regular Maps app that comes pre-installed on
iPhones because of the features it includes!
Not only can you use Google Maps for driving, walking, and even public transportation directions, but there are some other really cool features that come in handy while travelling!
- You can download an entire area for offline use! This is amazing for travellers who don’t have reliable data or wireless internet connection.
- You can save different locations to your favourites to find them easily – this is great for planning out the different places you want to go and then seeing them all pinned on a map (the hearts in the picture below are all the saved locations I have from my trip to London – and the little red circles are the London Underground stations). This also comes in handy because if you haven’t saved an area and you lose internet connection, even though you can’t search for directions you can still see where you are in reference to your saved locations and direct yourself using satellite just by wandering in the right direction. Our WiFi hotspot died a few times during my Europe trip and this was extremely useful!
- I mentioned this above, but Google Maps is great for public transportation directions! It almost always has up to date schedules or will at least lead you to the correct website for pricing and maps.
XE Currency Converter
Although it’s easy to type “45 euros to cad” into a Google search and get a quick answer, there is an even simpler way to keep track of multiple currencies when you’re not staying somewhere long enough to get the hang of estimating and you find yourself overwhelmed by the different rates!
There are lots of currency conversion apps but my favourite one is the XE.com app! It allows you to save as many currencies as you want to exchange offline for the times you can’t use Google, and even has a built in calculator so you can factor in things like the foreign exchange rate on your credit card before calculating the total in your local currency.
There are other features of the app as well such as news reports and market trends about currency rates but the features I mentioned are the ones that really helped me while I was away.
Does anyone have any favourite travel apps? 📱 Here are a few of mine! http://tinyurl.com/m2v568l
Does anyone have any favourite travel apps? I’m always looking for more to add to my toolbox! 📱 Here are a few of my favourites that have SAVED me on recent trips! Thank goodness for technology 🙌🏼 http://tinyurl.com/m2v568l