The Art of Now

05.27.14

The Best Travel Apps for Road Warriors

Seven tools to help you find the best deals on the road.
lexus-presented-by

A quick search of the iTunes app store reveals of hundreds upon hundreds of travel apps, most doing the same thing. With so many options, choosing the right one can be difficult. Which of the top 10 currency apps is really the best? Many apps can streamline and make your travels easier as well as save you money on flights and hotels. Below is a list of my favorite apps that every traveler should have:

TripIt (free) –TripIt organizes all your trip details—from flights to train tickets to hotel reservations—in one master trip itinerary, plus it sends reminders & delay notifications, tracks your points and miles, and provides reviewer tips about places nearby. It’s a must for frequent travelers who need to organize multiple trips in a short amount of time. There is a pro version that costs $49 per year and comes with Hertz Gold and Regus membership.   

XE Currency (free) - XE Currency offers up-to-the-minute exchange rates so you can budget your trip and convert 180+ world currencies on the go so you’ll never be caught off-guard. Know the price of things in another country is the best way to prepare your budget. Another good app I like is Currency. It’s similar interface and though it doesn’t show as much historical data as XE, it’s the best for people who want some simple. It’s also free.  

TripSaver ($1.99) - TripSaver tracks your travel expenses and monitors how much money you’ve got left based on your pre-set budget. It also provides a recommended budget based on the destination, and shows you whether you’re spending more or less than the norm. Disclaimer: I was involved in the making of this app.

HotelsTonight (free) – This is the best app for last minute hotel bookings. I’ve used in numerous locations and have gotten up to 70% off the listed price. Using your location, it will show you nearby hotels and how much off they are from their listed price. This is a must have app for every traveler.  

OnTheFly (free) – This search engine app is based on the ITA Matrix software, which is own buy Google. It lets you custom search a huge range of flight dates, times, durations, airports, and airlines—and the easy-to-read display makes flight comparison a snap. The ITA Matrix is a staple of serious travelers. ITA is heavily US based and tends to search large airlines. For an app that searches smaller, budget airlines, use Skyscanner or Momondo. Both are free.  

Google Maps (free) – Google Maps’ latest update features incredibly accurate maps and detailed, real-time transit information—everything from bus and train routes and timetables to voice-guided GPS navigation for walking, biking, and driving. It also pinpoints nearby restaurants and attractions to help give you a better the lay of the land. Using this app, I never get lost. 

Yelp (free) – In a new city and not sure where to eat? Yelp it! I constantly use Yelp to find affordable places to eat near where I am. Often times we aren’t near a local who can point us in the right direction and hotel staff usually will point you to a tourist restaurant. When situations like this happen, I turn to Yelp as it is an invaluable resource for finding delicious eats all over the world. 

It’s easy to get lost in the maze of travel apps that exist. There are many to choice from and much is personal preference. At the end of the day, we want to spend less time looking at our phones and more time looking at the destination in front of us. Using the above apps can cut out the clutter, get you the best deals right away, and streamline your travels. You’ll worry less and travel better.