Today, internet security blogger and mobile app aficionado Jess Signet of Tripelio, presents a guest post on smartphone apps for travellers. I’ve written about travel apps in previous posts, but if you’re in a rush or need a refresher, read about the apps you absolutely need on your iPhone or Android in less than 3 minutes. In this post, Jess elaborates on the 5 essential travel apps every traveller needs to have on their iPhone or Android.
For travellers, the advancements in smartphone technology are a huge benefit. Now it’s easier to plan and enjoy a trip than ever before. The increase in the number of mobile apps, and their uses, allows us to travel spontaneously without having to worry about getting lost or being stranded in a foreign place. Here are a few apps that will help you get the most out of your traveling and let you focus on the travel experience.
Skyscanner is by far the best app for comparing prices when you need to book flights on the go. From anywhere in the world, you can simply input the place you want to fly from and to, along with the dates you want to fly, and it will immediately bring up a list of airlines that fly that route and a comparison of the flight prices. This is a brilliant tool to have as it allows you a vast amount of flexibility when traveling. It stops you from having to browse numerous airlines websites and keeps you up to date with flight details so you adapt your travel plans accordingly. You can also turn off the ‘direct flight’ option, which is great for those trying to keep down the costs. It’s normally cheaper to fly via a number of airports than to aim for the quickest, most direct route.
The next essential travel app is the Hostelworld app. Hostelworld is a great site that allows you to search through thousands of accommodations to stay all over the world, having it as a mobile app means you can go anywhere and be able to find a place to rest your head at night. All you have to do is enter the dates you want to stay and search by city, and you get a list of a vast range of lodgings; from swanky city-centre hotels to quaint country guesthouses, there’s something for everyone.
There are options to search for both private and dorm rooms, so whether you’re looking for a quiet nights rest or a place to socialize, you’re sure to find something that suits. The app also lets you book the accommodation directly with no extra charges, allows you to view pictures, guest ratings, addresses and even shows the hostel on Google maps. This means that you can easily step off the plane and find the ideal place to stay for the night in no time!
For many travellers, hostels aren’t always appealing. There comes a point when the idea of sharing a room with 10 other people, half of whom arrive home at 3 a.m. drunk whilst the other half leave at 6 a.m. for the days expedition, becomes a bit too much to bear— especially for those traveling long term. Airbnb offers a solution to these problems. The app works similarly to the Hostelworld app in format; but in lieu of hostels, you search for a host. These hosts offer rooms, sofas and sometimes whole apartments in most countries in the world and allow you to experience the destination through the eyes of a local. Some hosts offer advice about nearby attractions and will even take you on tours, whilst some prefer to keep out of your way. All of this is made clear when you search the app. The search also highlights the amenities the facilities have to offer; so there’s no need to worry if there’ll be WiFi available for you to catch up on Netflix in peace! This is a great app to have in your back pocket when the sleepless nights of hostel life start getting to you!
The AroundMe app takes those days where you decide to ‘just have a wander’ to a new level. Venturing into city centres and villages without a plan is a popular pass-time for many travellers but now the experienced can be optimized! This app does pretty much what it says on the tin. It shows you what is around you at all times. Search for the nearest bar, eatery, local attractions among other options. There are also more practical choices, like searching for your nearest bank, ATM or even hospital, which is a great feature to have in case of an emergency. Not only does the app provide you with a list of businesses in your chosen category, it also lets you know how far they are, plans a route from your current location and even lets you email the information to a friend. AroundMe is available on iOS, Android and Windows so no matter who, or where, you are, you’ll never be lost again!
No travel app list would be complete without TripAdvisor. Already an industry giant for travel recommendations, this app takes all the greatest features from the website, and puts them straight onto your handset. Not only can you browse through attractions in destinations all over the world when connected to the internet, you can also download listings for whole cities so you are free to check up on activities even when you’re offline. TripAdvisor has also recently added a new feature similar to AroundMe, which allows you to search for tourist destinations in your surroundings using the location feature on your phone. It is worth noting that the list is much smaller, with far less categories than AroundMe. You can book attractions through the app and save your favourites so they’re accessible at a later date. Not only is this a useful app to help organize your travel activities, it also gives you something to do on those long journeys and waits in airports and train stations.
With so many great apps available to optimize your traveling experience, there’s no reason not to start planning your next trip. Are there any other apps you know of that are essential for travelers? Of have you used any of the ones above? Share your experiences in the comments below!
About the Author: Jess Signet is an internet security blogger who loves to travel and enjoys sharing her vast knowledge of mobile apps with fellow travellers. Read more posts by Jess at the links below.
- How To Spend 48 Hours In Munich
- How To Survive An Airport Layover
- An Insider’s Guide To Jamaica
- And Things To Do in Bogota
Until next time,