TripAdvisor is probably something that you already have at your hands when you are about to travel. Can it be a hotel, a restaurant, a sight, a party place, or even means of transportation, TripAdvisor for sure has something to recommend for you. Watch the ratings and read the reviews written by travellers who already visited the place. It’s not by accident that everyone knows TripAdvisor: it provides a comprehensive overview of the spots – literally, nothing is missing that you as a visitor would want to know. Location, contacts, opening hours, photos, spoken languages, what kind of visitors are usually there (families, singles, etc…). EVERYTHING you want to know. Hopefully you already have it on your phone but in case not, it’s time to download.
One more app that probably does not need any introduction but is important to talk about. Airbnb operates already in more than 34 thousand countries and its aim is to help travellers find a cheaper accomodation outside the circle of hotels. People who have un necessary room or flat for rent can upload it here and offer their private place as an accomodation. Booking and payment of course happens right through the app. The price is not the only reason why it is worth to try but also the instant friendships you can make with locals by using someone’s private place like a hotel room. Altough it is worthwhile to look for accomodation also in other sites or applications as the blooming popularity of Airbnb pumped up the prices in many cities.
And if you look somewhere else, then Booking.com is the place to visit. Either you are looking for a cheap hostel for a backpacking trip, or a comfy place for a family holiday, there is no easier way to find a various collection of them. By using filters like type of accomodation, stars, or price category, users will see only the most suitable ones instead of having to browse between thousands of accomodations. Read the evaluations, pick the best one and book it simply through the app. No reservation fees, no worries. Don’t forget to leave your comments after to help the choice of new visitors as well.
Once you are there, you will need someone – or something – that keeps you on track. Getting lost in a foreign country is not always as fun and romantic as it seems to be in movies. We also understand that you don’t want to spend all your salary on roaming fees. HERE WeGo comes with a Google Maps-like navigation system with that huge difference that it is possible to use it in offline mode as well by downloading the needed maps. HERE WeGo compares travel times and prices to help you pick the best option. Using it with internet connection, HERE WeGo also indicates traffic jams and other obstacles offering alternative routes. Choose between different means of transport like public transport, taxi, carsharing, or cycling. HERE WeGo is already available in 1200 cities and the number is only growing.
Find all your destinations with Citymapper! Citymapper is more than an interactive map or what Google Maps could offer. It provides real-time traffic information not only including public transport but also supplied with a Car Sharing app – car2go – and Uber integration. Just simply tap ’Get Me Somewhere’, add the place and it offers right away all means of transportation available, also indicating time and price, just like HERE WeGo – in case of cycling or walking the calories that will be burnt. Using the ’Meet me here’ option you can also share your location with others to meet up for a beer or a talk. Citymapper is spiced with a great sense of humor – in case you miss your bus, the information about how long your trip will take by jetpack will win a smile for sure. Unfortunately, it is available only in 36 cities so far but it’s expanding continously as users can easily vote for new cities accompanied by a short explanation.
With Time Out in hand you will never run out of things to do. Choose the city you’re visiting and browse between several categories: hungry? Find the best restaurant nearby! Feel like visiting a museum? Here’s a huge list of them! Craving a beer? The closest bar is there! Information on price and entry fees, location and public transport lines, opening hours, also a description by Time Out and reviews by users are added to all spots. What is more, it also includes local events and users can book the tickets or reserve restaurants right through the application. Unlike Citymapper, Time Out doesn’t have a built-in route planner but tapping on the map redirects the user automatically to Google Maps where he can plan his journey.
Evaneos is a bit similar to Time Out in a sense that it also offers information about how to get there also supplemented with advices on which part of the year is the best for visiting the sight and what the amount of the recommended duration of stay is. But Evaneos is first of all for travellers who like to learn more about the place they visit and also willing to share their experiences and opinion. It works a bit like a social media site – people who visited already the place gives a feedback and advices for the new comers. Besides that, the application itself already provides plenty of interesting facts and useful information about each destination. Evaneos goes bit more over boundaries: it also contains more hidden and less popular places thanks to its diverse user base. People who like adventures and enjoys getting a bit lost and visit yet undiscovered spots will definitely love this app.
Skyscanner Flights, Hotel, Car
Skyscanner is an app that’s great for booking flights from your Android device. While other travel offerings let you select hotels, rental cars, vacation packages and so on (and that’s certainly valuable for many consumers), Skyscanner keeps things straightforward by focusing solely on flights. Once you do a simple search, Skyscanner lets you get more picky, narrowing down all possible airlines, departure times and airport connections so you can choose wisely. Well-received by the press and public alike, Skyscanner is worth adding to your Android app collection if you’re a frequent flyer.
Hipmunk Hotels & Flights
Another flight search app? Sure, but Hipmunk is a little different to Skyscanner and its ilk. What makes it unique is its ability to single-out the potential ‘agony index’ of your chosen flight. Once you’ve selected your destination, airline, time/date and all that good stuff, Hipmunk takes into account things like how long you’ll be traveling, how many stops you’ll make and various other algorithms to return results ranked on how ‘enjoyable’ a potential flight may be. You still could be delayed of course, or face a crazy surcharge for carrying-on a bag. But in the initial stages of booking a flight, Hipmunk proves a worthy companion.
If you’re a frequent flyer with American Airlines, the airline’s Android app by the same name is a must-have download. The app has a lot of different features designed to help make flying a little less stressful. When you load the app’s main menu, you’ll see clickable tabs for you to book a flight, check your flight status, check in for flights, or even play Sudoku.
Here, you can store your mobile boarding pass (you can look at your seat and gate information at a glance), display terminal maps, and enroll in and monitor your AAdvantage miles program. After you’ve registered, you can continue to monitor your rewards points through the app. What’s kind of nice about American Airlines is that once you’re logged in, you can stay logged in, which, of course, eliminates some frustration. Logging in to services/websites over and over again, especially during the span of a few minutes, is a huge pet peeve of mine. American Airlines seems like an app that does all of your dirty work for you. Instead of panicking and checking your boarding pass every three minutes (like I do), you can relax.
This app is useful for for multiple reasons. You can search multiple booking services all at once. That means you can compare flight, hotel and car rental deals at once, and book directly from the app. And while Kayak is known for its comparative search capabilities, it can also help predict the best time to purchase an airline ticket for most domestic destinations. If you have the opportunity to research flights early, take advantage of Kayak’s extensive search options to make the best, and most affordable decision possible. Need to know where the ATM, bar, newsstand or food options are located in an unfamiliar airport? The app provides a list that allows you to drill down for location specifics. You can also check flight, gate, even baggage-claim status on most flights. The “Buzz” section provides the latest pricing trends across carriers for a specific trip. The graph shows you whether prices are rising or falling, and by how much. Need more? Add a widget to your home screen, or set alerts for price points on specific trips. An added bonus: you can track flight statuses directly from Kayak as well.
Kayak may be able to track flights, but their add-on feature is nothing compared to FlightTrack, an Android app dedicated to this tedious task. The app delivers real-time flight statuses, including boarding and arrival gates, delays and cancellations. You can view flights on a map as well as interactive flight cards. FlightTrack spans 16,000 airports around the world, tracking 1,400 airlines on a global scale. The pro version is worth consideration for travelers in a pinch, as it helps you find alternative flights when you’re faced with extreme delays or cancellations. With the pro version you’ll also get a homescreen widget, delay forecasts, SeatGuru seating maps and more.
Whether your flight was cancelled or you just need a place to rest your head during a cross-country road trip, Hotel Tonight finds immediate deals on local hotels. With booking until 2am, Hotel Tonight keeps you from having to sleep on terminal seats, and the massive discounts don’t hurt either! Now global, Hotel Tonight supports bookings in London, Amsterdam and beyond, so global travelers can always find a place to crash.
I love how this savvy app classifies hotels by qualifiers such as “Solid,” “Hip,” and “Charming.” “Solid” seems to classify a place to stay with not a lot of frills whereas “Hip” would be the hotel to stay if you are looking for the ‘it’ crowd and night life. I would stay in any of the Chicago selections that have popped up when I used the app, so I will definitely use this app to book hotel stays for visiting friends and family. And because I trust the Chicago offerings, I am apt to try it on my next road or business trip as well. The other day they had a room at the Wynn in Las Vegas for under $150. Talk about a steal!
Gas Buddy (Free)
The free GasBuddy.com app for Android is a fabulous concept. Basically, the app gives you a rundown of gas prices by grade according to your location. No more driving around town wasting gas to save a few bucks! Search prices by city or ZIP. Or, simply tap the Find Gas Near Me selection. If available, the app provides prices for regular, mid-grade, premium or diesel by tab. The listings provide address and distance from station. Hit the Sort button to arrange by price or distance. You can also see gas station and prices on a map view.
GasBuddy.com relies on users to report prices of gas, so not all stations have current listings. In the app’s search preferences, you can choose to show all stations or only display stations with current prices. This makes it easier to find the cheapest gas around. You can also choose search settings for fuel type and distance. The app also offers some helpful features of individual gas stations like pay-at-pump convenience, restrooms, ATMs and station photos. Users can also add photos, in addition to reporting gas prices.
Audible for Android
Not too long ago I set a 12-month goal to read 40 books. I’m currently at twelve, and I fully intend to make headway during holiday travel, with the help of Audible. It’s a great way to passively take in a book (we don’t all learn by osmosis), narrated through your earbuds as you while away the hours waiting for a flight, sitting on a plane, or in a car for hours. Loaded with over 100k books, Audible has bestsellers, classics, news, interviews and every other genre you can imagine. You can download books to your device, navigate through chapters and sections, change the narration speed and switch between reading and listening format with Whispersync for Voice (requires an Android-powered Kindle).
AllTrails – Hiking & Biking
Even when traveling, I look for the nearest gym. Curb holiday pounds with AllTrails, an app that can help you find local trails for hiking, biking, jogging and more. Browse over 40k trail guides for outdoor activities, which means you can stay active wherever you go. Trail reviews, top maps and routes and photos are included, and trails can also be downloaded for offline use. Even if you only make it out for a post-turkey constitutional, your body (and belly) will thank you later.
Camp and RV – Campgrounds Plus
One of the best apps for campers, AllStays Camp and RV – Campgrounds Plus is a must-have for roadies traveling this summer. Search for the best camp and RV sites across the nation, with map views to plot your road trip. You can filter the map by camp type, sorting through the amenities and services. You also get photos and reviews for national and state parks, along with contact information, directions, rate ranges, hookups and other pertinent information. The app even provides necessary alerts for road conditions, emergencies and varying state laws.
Surfline Surf Report
If you’re near a beach, take the opportunity to catch some waves. The Surfline Surf Report app offers real-time reports and 5-day forecasts for thousands of surf spots around the world. You can swipe through their entire database of breaks, or search for a specific beach location. There’s also live-streaming HD cams for some 100 breaks in the U.S. and Hawaii, giving you all the information you need to plan the perfect surf trip before summer ends.
My Disney Experience
My first trip to Disney World was late summer, right before the start of 3rd grade. It was a great time to head south to Florida, and what better place for a family trip? Get all the park info you need from Disney’s Mobile app for Android, planning the entire trip from your mobile device. The app features GPS-enabled maps, character locations and dining reservations. You can even check attraction wait times and load the FastPass to re-enter the park. There are also a few trivia games to keep you occupied while waiting in line for Space Mountain.
TripIt: Travel Organizer
If you are a forgetful tourist or frazzled business voyager who tends to stress out about traveling for fear of losing your pertinent travel information, like hotel reservations and flight details, then the free TripIt – Travel Organizer app is an ideal mobile travel companion for you. You can book your stay with hotels.com, and your flight with orbitz.com, and TripIt will store your information in one handy app on your Android phone. And even more convenient, if you use Gmail or Google apps, you can set TripIt to automatically grab your travel information. The app also backs up to tripit.com, so if your phone is lost or stolen, you can find the nearest computer to access your travel information. Overall, it’s a travel timesaver when you can access all your documents in one place, versus hunting through your already overflowing email inbox for several travel itineraries.
WorldMate pulls together essential travel details, and organizes it on your phone. The app lets you register for the WorldMate service free, right from the phone, using an email address. From there, WorldMate becomes your travel buddy. Check your flight status in seconds, or call your hotel with just a couple of taps. You can bring up maps of your destination and hotel with the integrated Google Maps. If you don’t yet have a hotel, the app allows you to search, using Hotel.com. You’ll also find complete weather forecasts for your current location and your destination, so you know what to pack.
Poynt is great for traveling in places you’re not familiar with, because it helps you find anything you might need. Use Poynt to find businesses and restaurants, search for the lowest gas prices in your area, or even track down events and other things to do. The app uses your device’s GPS capabilities to figure out whatever’s around and point you in its direction.
When traveling abroad in a place where you don’t understand the language, Google Translate can be a lifesaver. The app packs translations in more than 80 languages and doesn’t require an Internet connection to use. It also has the capabilities of translating both text that you enter as well as audio speech, meaning you and another person can have a conversation normally and the app will do the translating for you.