Travel the world…
For people that travel regularly for business or even those taking a vacation there are many plans and decisions to make that can make the difference between a trip that is memorable in a good way or in a bad way. Before cell phones came along and with them useful apps a great deal about a trip was dependent on sheer luck. Finding a decent hotel, not missing a flight, eating at the best restaurants and finding the unique attractions could be quite challenging. There are hundreds of apps that can help travellers but the ten listed are some that many are finding quite useful. There are really so many that this list could have easily become the 100 best travel apps and still not really scratched the surface. This list is some of the top names for generic travel assistance but don’t let that stop you from searching out apps that handle specific needs such as translation or currency conversion for foreign travel or specific city guides. The choosing of these apps takes into account those most often used and accessed. Also, keep in mind that not all apps are available for all devices.
1. TripAdvisor: http://www.tripadvisor.com/apps
Global Alexa Rating: 198
TripAdvisor has long been known for being the place to go to get ratings on hotels, restaurants and more so it should come as no surprise that their mobile and tablet app would be popular as well. The mobile app allows users to find hotels, restaurants and attractions for any destination as well as see reviews, opinions and photos from other users. A great feature to use is their ‘Near Me’ option to locate everything that is close to the address the user enters. The ‘Live View’ option is also very useful. Links within the app take you right to the websites for the entities that are of interest including hotels, resorts, vacation rentals, vacation packages, travel guides and more. From the main site you can also link to 3 other apps – Offline City Guides, SeatGuru and GateGuru.
2. Expedia: http://www.expedia.com/app
Global Alexa Rating: 430
Expedia has also been a popular travel assistant but for a slightly different reason – they are the place to go for discounts and deals. Their app incorporates this same philosophy that flights and hotels can be found at lower prices while still having a great trip. Their real-time itinerary update feature is great for business travelers on the go or even for those vacationers that want to cram every possible adventure possibly into their trip. With daily top deals, a reward program, featured offers and their 24-hour support system this app can make that next trip a bit more affordable. Think of it as the world’s largest online travel agency, right at your fingertips!
3. Kayak: http://www.kayak.com/
Global Alexa Rating: 948
Kayak is quite a bit different than other travel apps because it actually is the best of all worlds because it compares hundreds of travel sites in just seconds. It is also available on some devices that others are not such as Windows Phone 7 and Kindle devices. Some of the options of this app include finding flights and hotel rooms, managing your itinerary and tracking your flight status. One great feature of this app is the ability to explore the world – you view a map of the world and see how much it would cost to travel to various world locations. This is great for those that need some help figuring out a unique destination within their budget. There is both a free app as well as an inexpensive upgraded app called Kayak Pro. The upgrade includes airport terminal maps which can make your layover a bit less stressful.
4. Orbitz: http://www.orbitz.com/mktg/mobile/
Global Alexa Rating: 1,451
Orbitz Anywhere works very much like the Orbitz website that many have come to trust for the best discounts on everything from cruises to car rentals. One main difference is that they have reserved some exclusive hotel discounts just for mobile users. Even better is that these deals can be booked even on the same day and there are discounts on thousands of hotels around the world. Another benefit is the ability to put together package bookings to save even more money. Map based search results make it easy to navigate and be able to book flights, hotels and rental cars quickly and easily. Apps is available for most devices.
5. Skyscanner: http://www.skyscanner.com/mobile.html
Global Alexa Rating: 2,722
Skyscanner is the ultimate tool for finding low fare airline flights whether you know when and where you want to go or just want to find someplace fun to go for a quick weekend away. Flexible itineraries can be a great deal of fun and this app makes that possible. Simply put in your nearest airport and search for all flights to see just when and where the cheapest flights are. It will quickly search through over 1,000 airlines and give you plenty of options. You can then filter your searches by airline, price or even arrival/departure times. Once you find the flight you want simply book it through them with no fees whatsoever and then share the details of your trip with family, friends or colleagues. The perfect app for the spontaneous person with wanderlust!
6. OpenTable: http://www.opentable.com/
Global Alexa Rating: 3,030
One of the most challenging things to do when traveling is to find reliable and memorable restaurants. This can even be difficult in your own home town! The answer is OpenTable’s website and mobile app. Let the app find your current location, tell it the day and time you want to dine and how many people will be dining and the app will give you dozens of options. You can also filter the results by cuisine and price. Select one and it automatically makes the reservation for you. As you continue to use the app while traveling or at home you will earn dining reward points that can be redeemed as dining checks. One disclaimer about this company is that the reward points you earn will completely expire if you do not use the account for a period of 12 months. The reward points are a nice feature but the app itself is the useful part so whether you use it just once a year on vacation or throughout the year will depend on the available restaurants in your area. They currently have over 28,000 restaurants including some International restaurants. You can also suggest a restaurant and they will try to get them into their program.
7. Viator: http://m.viator.com/mobileapps/
Global Alexa Rating: 4,924
Viator is the app to use to find things to do once you get to your destination – or perhaps to help you decide just what destination to go to! The app includes thousands of tours and activities that you can search and book with many having discounts unavailable through other apps. Each tour is explained and described in detail to make it easy to choose what you want to go see. Once booked you receive a paperless voucher that you can show for admission or send it to your email to be printed at your hotel or before you leave home. Attractions are shown on a map so you can easily plan out each day’s activities. You can also share your plans on various social networks and share photos with other users. A great way to make sure you don’t miss any of the important landmarks and activities.
8. Tripit: https://m.tripit.com/uhp/mobile
Global Alexa Rating: 11,166
Tripit is a travel organizer that takes all your various trip details and puts them in an easy access itinerary format that can be viewed on your device and even sync’d with your calendar. This makes it easy to keep up with your travel plans and also makes it easy to share with others either directly or through Facebook or LinkedIn. The way the app works is that you take confirmations you have received from hotels and airlines and forward them to your Tripit account. The basic version is free to use and there is TripIt Pro for frequent travellers that want status alerts, reminders and the absence of ads.
9. Hipmunk: http://www.hipmunk.com/
Global Alexa Rating: 14,114
Cute name and cute app – Hipmunk will make you smile and that is always a good thing when the stress of travel becomes too much. Probably the cutest feature of this app is that their sort options include one called ‘Agony’ which selects the flight least likely to cause you agony by considering all factors including price, flight duration and number of layovers. Search for flights or hotels, explore popular destinations in the US and Internationally with their city guides and view deals. You can even sign up for flight deals from your city and they will be emailed to you regularly – the perfect tool for the person that likes to hop on a flight just for the fun of where it takes them. Search flights and hotels with ease and get great prices besides. Fun and easy to use for the occasional or frequent traveller.
10. Gogobot: http://www.gogobot.com/iphone
Global Alexa Rating: 23,486
Gogobot is a community fed travel source in that users are encouraged to take snapshots during their travels and create and share digital postcards. This makes it great once you have picked a destination because you get a personalized travel guide that tells you all the best hotels and restaurants based on the experience of fellow travellers. Users can also share their digital postcards of places and food via social networks, SMS or email. The community feel of this app makes it popular because it brings users in touch with passionate travellers like themselves. Pull up a destination and see how many users have been there and how they rated it. Look at the photos and maps so when you get there you will already know the key places to visit.
Just as everyone’s trip is different so will be their needs when it comes to a great travel app so although these top 10 travel apps are very popular consider your specific requirements to find others. For example, if you are traveling with a group and sharing some expenses you might like Trip Splitter for organizing finances. Outdoor enthusiasts might enjoy EveryTrail to find walking tours and trails. Traveling overseas and confused about tipping? Tipping Bird can help. There are plenty more as well but start with the ten given here and see just why fellow travellers rely on them trip after trip.