From planning your trip to making life easy in a strange land, having the right travel apps in your phone can have a big impact on your holiday experience.
Here are a dozen that help make me an appy traveller.
Comparing flights between cities is easy online. Comparing rail, bus and air transport options between two European destinations can be completely overwhelming. Which is where GoEuro comes in.
The GoEuro app works with more than 450 train, bus and flight partners in Europe to help you find the best way to get from A to B, whether you’re travelling between major cities or small villages.
With around 46,000 daily routes between more than 33,000 European destinations GoEuro lets you filter by price, time, duration and how many changes you’re prepared to do.
The free app has been around for a while but the Berlin based company has recently introduced a new feature that allows users to create a personal profile to store their payment and booking data to make things easier when they want to lock in their trip.
Flights may be the first thing that many people think of when travelling but trains and buses let you see more of that European countryside and cut back on the amount of holiday time wasted sitting around in airports. GoEuro can help you see both the time and money you could save if you stay closer to the ground.
The first thing I do when I get a confirmation email for a flight I’ve booked is forward it to Trips@Tripcase.com knowing I will then have those details at my fingertips in my app rather than having to trawl through emails when I need to remember the details.
I love the way the app keeps me up to date with my flight status, sending me reminders that the trip is about to begin and telling me what the weather is going to be like, or giving me the heads up when there’s a flight delay or a gate change. I once had an alert on my phone from TripCase about a delay even before the information came through from the airline themselves.
The app will also share your travel updates with friends or family when you’re on the road if you want to keep them in the digital loop. Perfect for avoiding any long waits at the airport if they’re waiting to greet you and your delayed plane.
The Booking.com website is one of the best around for finding hotel and apartment deals around the world, and by popping their app in your phone you can have all of your bookings on hand, can make new bookings on the go and also find the best hotel deals closest to wherever you may be at the time.
The Booking.com app offers instant confirmation, paperless check-in and offline maps, and you can search by city, hotel name or landmark and filter by price, review, or even whether they’re pet friendly or have free WiFi.
When I travelled around Europe last century, back when websites existed but smart phones did not, I used to go to the Oanda website before every trip and print out one of their Currency Cheat Sheets for everyone I was travelling with.
They were so handy when you weren’t the fastest at doing currency conversions in your head, not to mention when you couldn’t remember what the exchange rate was in the first place.
These days the Oanda Currency Converter app is with me at all times. Super simple in design you just choose your two currencies and pop in the amount you want converted so you can figure out if you’re onto a bargain or about to break the bank.
The app has the daily rate for more than 190 currencies and lets you add on the typical ATM and credit card rates so you can factor that into your decision. You can also use it offline if you’re happy to use the rate the app remembered last as your guide.
Oh how this app has helped solve a few language problems on my travels. You can find the translation for what you want by typing, speaking into your phone or hovering your phone’s camera over some text.
Google Translate works on 103 languages for typing and 29 languages for visual translation, with Chinese the latest language you can transform by hovering over the characters.
You can also translate 52 languages when you’re offline by downloading in advance, and the amount of space a language will take up in your phone has shrunk from 250MB to 25MB so you don’t have to worry about how much memory you have left.
Long before Google Translate came along I used to carry a special little book with me to foreign lands.
The Point It Book is described as a “traveller’s language kit” but it actually gets around the whole language thing by removing the need for words.
Instead it’s full of pictures of things that you then, you guessed it, point at. It’s organised into sections with food, shopping, accommodation, transport and so on and that little book is also available as the Point It app.
Perfect for when you’re offline or dealing with other factors such as noise or unusual dialects that a translation app may have trouble with.
Because it’s always nice to learn at least a few basic words and phrases before spending time in a foreign land, Earworms has earned a place on my list.
Earworms usually refers to a bit of music or a song that gets stuck in your head, but in this case it’s a language lesson over sticky bits of music to help them stay in your head.
I’m not what you would call the best at learning languages, and I found Earworms helped me lock some basic phrases into my brain which I could then use on my travels.
When you have to go, you have to go. And sometimes walking for blocks and hoping for the best can start to lead to panic stations.
Which is why Toilet Finder can provide some sweet relief. It can tell you where the nearest public toilets are around you, which ones are free to the public, those with handicapped toilets, and even their star rating from other users.
This app doesn’t just tell you where the nearest free Wi-Fi is to help save your data plan, it also lets you know which ones have proven to have a stronger signal than others, and uses feedback from Foursquare to let you know more about the place itself.
WiFi Mapper has symbols so you can see at a glance if it’s a cafe, restaurant, bar, shopping centre or more, and by reading other reviews you can get a feel for which spot you’re better off spending your time in while you get your Wi-Fi hit.
From what the weather is like right now, to the next few hours, to the next 15 days, the AccuWeather app can help you plan when you should be enjoying the great outdoors and when you’d be better of heading to a museum or gallery.
As well as the actual temperature the app shares the feels like temp, with humidity levels, wind speed, and more.
It also shares the phases of the moon for those who like to know when to watch for the full moon rising.
I’ll admit it took me a while to see Snapchat’s charms but now that I realise how great it is for sharing travels I’m on board.
I like seeing what my friends are up to and where other travel bloggers are and what they’re doing around the world.
If you’re also a snappy chatty fan do say g’day. I’m @TheAmandaWoods and love connecting and hearing what other travel lovers are up to.
Seriously. I just shared a blog post about why I think Pokemon Go makes travel even more fun and why I went from being a total Pokemon cynic to a believer.
Between Pokestops sharing interesting tidbits about the things around you to being encouraged to walk a little further to hatch an egg, I’m glad I decided to see what the fuss was all about.
So how about you? What travel app would you miss the most if we were all forced to give up our smart phones?
This post has been brought to you by the GoEuro app.