My goal for 2019 was to go somewhere I’ve never been to before, and that goal has been realized three times over as so far for 2019, I’ve been to Brussels Belgium, Amsterdam Netherlands, and New Orleans. A friend recently asked, “what apps do you use when you travel, and what can’t you live without?”. I’ve shared apps that you need to install before you travel aboard, but there are a few that would never be deleted from my phone.
So with that being said, today I want to share with you my top 5 favorite travel apps that I cannot live without. Since I have an iPhone, these are all apps you can find in the Apple Store, but a few or all may be available in the Google Play store for you Android users out there.
This organizes all my travel plans, from airlines to hotels, all in one place. While I don’t have the paid version of this, you really don’t need it. I also have all my airline apps on my phone. However, this keeps me organized much more efficiently. Whenever an invitation arrives, all I have to do is merely look at the app and see my availability. If you travel as much as I do, or even if you don’t, this is an absolute must-have. The good news is that it’s available in both the Apple and Google Play stores.
It’s my goal to visit as many countries as I possibly can and as many states in the United States as well. There are currently 195 countries in the world, and so far I’ve only been to 20, which means that there are 175 countries that still need to be seen. But how do I keep track of where I’ve been and which countries still need to be visited? With this little app, I just input the country I’ve been to, and it maintains a list. I can quickly see the percentage of the world I’ve visited in a 3D version as well. Been There, Done That!
I’m always looking for my next fix, and I’m not talking about drugs, although wanderlust is very much like a drug. Whether it’s a weekend getaway, a week or even a month, I just prefer to get out and see as much of the world as possible. However, that also means that the funds need to be available as I’m not always able to travel during the off-season. So how do I see as much of the world without spending too much money? I use Skiplagged. With this handy-dandy app, I simply input my travel dates and Skiplagged shows an array of places and how much it’ll cost for me to get there. Now I can budget accordingly. While I also use Google Flights to track trips, this app is really the next best thing.
Sometimes I’ll find a deal on Skiplagged and Google Flights, but it may not be in the budget that I’ve allocated for that trip. That’s where Hopper comes in. It tells me whether or not it’s a good time to buy. Maybe if I wait a couple of weeks, the price may go down, or perhaps I just need to jump on that flight right now because the price will go up. What’s great about it is that it keeps track and sends you updates, so you’re never caught unaware that your flight price just went up by a couple of hundred dollars.
Visit a City
Once I’ve gotten my ticket, my plans can change at a moment’s notice. And sometimes I purchase tickets for places I’ve never been to before and have no idea what to do when I get there. That’s why I love using Visit a City. It has itinerary suggestions for many cities around the world, including even right here in the USA. We recently visited New Orleans, and it was invaluable to our trip. We were able to get suggestions on what to do that day, not just for ourselves (my husband and I), but with Madison as well, as there are family itineraries. There are 1–5 day guides, and you also have the option of booking activities right there through the app.
While I always purchase my carriers’ data plan whenever abroad, so I’m able to share photos via Instagram, etc., and try to connect to a WiFi hotspot as much as possible to enable WiFi calling, it’s not always possible. My carrier charges 25c per minute for calls when roaming internationally. However, texts are always free. With WhatsApp, I don’t have to worry about carrier charges. It’s a great way to keep in touch with family and friends whenever I travel, and even when I don’t. Since most of my relatives are international, there’s no worry about long-distance charges while here in the US either.
I’m one of those people who waits until the very last minute to pack. While it gives many people anxiety just thinking about it, I’ve perfected the art of last minute packing. I can pack a few hours before my flight and not forget anything. Since I’ve been traveling, I’ve only forgotten something once. That was on my most recent trip to Canada. I took the batteries out of my camera to charge the night before and left it on the charger while I grabbed my camera. Luckily for me, my husband was able to overnight both the battery and charger with FedEx, so I was able to take photos in Toronto while there. This app is free in the App store, and I’ve used it a few times, but for those who struggle with knowing what to pack, this is a lifesaver. It tells you what the average weather will be like where you’re going and gives you advice on what to pack so you won’t forget anything, as I did.
Now there are obviously more travel apps on my phone that I won’t delete, such as my airline apps, as they keep me updated with delays and flight changes (unless I purchase the premium version of TripIt), and the other apps I shared at the beginning of this post. However, these 5 are my absolute favorites when it comes to saving money, keeping track of where I’ve been and where to go next, what to see when there, and how to stay in touch with family and friends when finally at my destination.