What was life before apps on our phones? I mean really, how did people get around without Google Maps? Although our phones can be distracting, there are many applications that can help us save time and…not get lost (anyone else directionally challenged? just me? ok). Don’t get me wrong, I like to take on challenges when visiting new places (when it comes to languages, navigation, etc), but since the apps are there, why not make use of them? Most of these apps are productive-ish and I hope you find them useful in the next travel adventure you take!
I personally have the Southwest Airlines app on my phone because that’s who I frequently travel with. Airline apps are good for obtaining your boarding pass, changing/canceling flights, getting notified of gate changes and delays, and you can even stream shows/movies on a select few.
I’ve mentioned Culture Trip before because I use it frequently whenever I travel. The Culture Trip team works with freelancers to get their users location-based recommendations, photos, videos, inspiration, etc. I actually discovered a great coffee shop in Paris because of it and still dream about their coffee to this day.
One of my favorite platforms of all time. I love that you can download music and podcasts offline – it’s perfect for when you don’t have WiFi and are up 30,000 feet in the air. I’ve had Spotify since I was an undergrad back in 2010. They’ve come a long way and I admire their marketing strategies and use of data analytics.
I first used the Citymapper app when I visited New York for the first time and it helped tremendously. I mean a small-town, directionally-challenged Idaho girl was taking on NY for the first time so yes, I prepared as much as I could. Don’t judge me. New York has then become one of my favorite places to visit. Citymapper currently supports major cities, but you can inquire to add a new city by voting on their site.
Duolingo is great to learn new languages. I personally use it to brush up on my French and I find it convenient to practice during my downtime at airport gates. Also, a great way to catch someone’s attention – you never know who speaks the language you’re practicing 😉 (unless it’s English…pretty common and not as sexy as French).
Speaking of new languages – if you’re visiting a new country, Google Translate would be a great app to download. Not only could you look up translations of words and phrases, but you can use it to actually communicate if you’re having a difficult time pronouncing words. Again, how did we ever manage?
This app is perfect for last-minute bookings at great prices. You can see ratings for each location/room and they tell you the price up front. I used Hotel Tonight for my stay in Paris and it met all my expectations.
What applications do you use when you travel?
Other Travel Essentials