10 Useful Apps for Travelling

Monday, 1 January 2018

I think it’s widely agreed that these days, there isn’t a more useful thing to have with you when travelling then a smart phone. They can help you book accommodation, keep track of a budget, avoid getting lost, be a source of money and a way of contacting home.We've put together a list of all the apps which we use when travelling, some of which you’ll have heard of, some may be new to you. Enjoy!

  1. TripCoin 
This is our favourite of the lot and takes the number one spot! Tripcoin is an app that allows you to set a budget for a trip and keep track of it all the way along, providing data such as average daily spend per category (accommodation, food etc) and whether you’re on target to be under or above budget by the end of the trip.

  1. Maps.me
This app is a real life saver for the times when you don’t have that all important connection to WiFi! Maps.me is similar to google maps in the way it provides detailed maps of all countries, including information about where you will find the closest ATMs, restaurants etc. But the main point of the app is that it works offline. Simply download the map for free for a region e.g. Southern Vietnam and away you go. 


  1. Airbnb, Hostelworld, Booking.com
I’m sure these apps will be more familiar, but equally useful. All 3 of these allow you to book and sometimes pay for accommodation in advance meaning you can avoid the stress of turning up to a place and not finding a bed at the right price. In Asia, we used Hostelworld by far the most, as there were so many options in every city, whereas in South America Airbnb and Booking.com have definitely been more useful as often there have only been a couple of hostels on Hostelworld to look at. Airbnb can be a super cheap option and really pleasant as well, due to the more personal feel of staying in a shared appartment or private room in a local's house - especially if you’re wanting to practise some of the local language!

  1. TripIt 
This app creates adds details of accommodation and transport as you go along, and so is useful for both remembering where and when you’ll be staying somewhere or flying etc, but also when looking back on the trip to remember where you stayed. The best thing about it is that it doesn’t require much manual work as the app scans through your emails every now and then to pick up on booking confirmations, before adding them to your ‘Trip’ on the app.

  1. Google Photos
I can’t really imagine anything that would be more upsetting than losing all of your photos from your travels by getting your phone or camera stolen or by breaking them. So, don’t let it happen! Whilst you might not be able to stop yourself from losing your breaking your camera, you can make sure you’re backing up all of your photos on Google Photos (for free!) as you go along. If you set the quality to excellent rather than full quality then the photos still maintain a great quality but you’re allowed to store as many as you want.

  1. Travel/Money Card apps
When travelling, a really useful thing to get before hand is a travel/money card. This is a card that is linked to your bank card and so can be topped up in anytime and will work when taking money out from ATMs abroad. The great thing about it is that you’ll avoid paying extra fees from using a regular debit or credit card from back home and if your card were to be stolen or hacked you would only be losing the little amount that was left on there (as by having the app you can move money across from your bank a little at a time, whenever you need more.) We use CaxtonFX cards and haven't had any problems at all.

  1. Rome2rio & Busbud
These two apps are for transport, both showing you how to get from A to B by land, how much the journey will cost and how long it will take. I’ve found Rome2rio to be more accurate in general and provide you with more options, but Busbud is often better for actually booking the tickets. When travelling through South East Asia a great website to use is Baolau.com, where you can search for and book buses, trains and flights.

  1. Uber & Grab
Everybody’s heard of Uber, an app which lets you order a taxi from your phone and where drivers are rated by their passengers. Grab is very similar to Uber, although there is the option of paying in cash rather than having to pay by card through the app. Grab is the market leader in South East Asia, particularly Vietnam, where you can also use Grab to get on a motorbike. Both apps are a really good way of making sure that you’re not getting ripped off by a taxi driver and to make sure that the driver is safe. Even if you just use the app to check the estimated price for a certain distance, you could then get in an ordinary taxi without running the risk of paying double for your fare. 

  1. Skyscanner & Kayak
These two apps are flight comparison apps allowing you to see which flights are cheaper to which airports and on which dates. Although probably more useful before travelling, these apps are great for checking whether there are any cheap internal flights to save you time.

  1. Adobe Lightroom
In our opinion this is one of the best free apps out there for editing photos. Editing photos doesn’t need to be something to shy away from and is the best way to make the most out of your photos. The app doesn’t require internet and so can be a good thing to keep you occupied on a long bus journey.

Hope this has been useful!

Thanks for reading,

Will & Lissa

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