Mobile apps are all about convenience, and there is no better time for efficiency than when traveling. As you plan holiday travel, take a look some of our favorite travel apps out there to help you from planning to packing.
If you’re unsure about your next vacation plan details or are tired of relying on where your points and miles can take you, the Trip app could be the perfect answer. It helps design your vacation plans based upon your personal interests by honing in on the best rates for hotels and activities by aggregating data from numerous travel websites into one place. You begin by designating your preferred destination and then rely on rate alerts for hotels or activities based upon your arrival date.
User-submitted tips on the free app complement reviews and information found elsewhere on the web to help indecisive travelers create the ideal vacation. It continues to suggest options for your travel dates and gives detailed information through photos and user reviews.
Annoying bag fees and shrinking bag sizers for carry-on luggage should be your inspiration for becoming a better packer. Travel with less, pack it more efficiently, and arrive wrinkle-free and even with space to bring souvenirs. The Packing Pro app allows users to create customized packing lists that optimize the space in their bag for their travel destination.
The lists can be broken down into “must-need” and optional items or even separated by bag. Items can be entered into the list by weight, which comes in handy for airlines that limit bags based upon weight over size. Users can tie images to each item to ensure that the proper item is packed for a trip (helpful for travelers taking repeated trips to various destinations).
The app is available in multiple languages and even features a unique option to export the list and email it to other travelers that might be on the same trip.
Banish jet lag from your travel regime (or at least minimize it as best possible) thanks to the Entrain app that helps to regulate your body’s circadian rhythms and adjust to new time zones more easily. Designed by researchers at the University of Michigan, this free app allows you to enter your destination and time exposure to light. This helps you to regulate your body clock (light is the primary signal to the body’s circadian clock) and adjust to new time zones.
The app tracks your light exposure to better inform you of recommended times to nap or eat. Users input specific data of their activities to receive an optimized schedule of behavior. A positive feature of the app is that you can modify your light exposure data for an updated schedule as needed.
Perhaps forceful flight attendants shouldn’t be so quick to make people close their window shades on long flights (those that prefer less light can use eye shades). Or could it be that flight attendants just want everyone to fall asleep so they have to do less service? The Entrain app is essential for long-haul flyers.
Want to find out expert opinions on local shopping, dining, or other businesses? Localeur is designed just for that purpose making it great for people moving to a new area or traveling to various destinations for the first time. While the app is not as expansive as it could be, it does offer in-depth research on 25 major markets around the U.S.
The app is powered by locals in each area, which ensures that people are familiar with the area. Unlike most other review apps, the people providing the data might be tourists meaning they are not fully aware of the options in a market. Take TripAdvisor, for example, readers have no idea about someone’s frame of references or experiences when reading a review. That’s why Localeur’s insistence on using local members is more valuable to users of this free app.
Whether you access lounges based upon a premium class of travel, membership card, or benefits from a credit card or lounge program like Priority Pass, the Lounge Buddy app should be your new best friend. When you get to an airport, signage may not always be ever-present, and lounge hours are not easily accessible.
Lounge Buddy gives you a breakdown of available airport lounges, their operating hours and terminal locations, and their accessibility rules. Another popular feature are user reviews and photos that can help you decide which lounge is most interesting to visit.
The app works even when your phone is in airplane mode making it convenient for inflight research, and it also allows you to store your lounge access credentials to more easily identify lounges that you can use in each airport. You can also include specific trip details for all of the lounges available to you on a given trip.
If traveling in a premium cabin internationally, chances are you will have access to a lounge, but if not, many credit cards like the American Express Platinum and Citi Prestige provide a way in the door. Amex Platinum offers access to many lounges on its own, and both cards provide global lounge options through Priority Pass. The Lounge Buddy website and app are great tools for finding a lounge. The best part about the app is that it works when your phone is in airplane mode.