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When it comes to vacation, travelers are relying on their smartphones more than ever, not only as a source of inspiration but for booking and logistics as well.
Luckily, there are plenty of apps built to help with everything from day-of hotel bookings to last-minute flight changes, replace heavy guidebooks and foreign-language dictionaries, and simply provide on-the-ground local expertise. Basically, whatever your interest or need when it comes to hitting the road, there’s an app for that.
These are the apps most loved here at TPG for making your next adventure go as smooth as possible — all at the touch of a button (or two).
TripIt organizes all your travel itineraries and documents so you have everything in one place before you even get to your destination. Just have your reservations automatically sent to TripIt, which will let you view travel confirmations, flight itineraries, tickets, hotel and Airbnb booking info, rental car reservations, ferry tickets and driving directions in one easy place. The app also makes it simple to share your trip plans with whoever is picking you up from the airport or train station, as well as anyone else who may need to coordinate with you or know what your travel plans are.
Google Trips is out to give TripIt a run for its money. The app offers customized tours, guides and maps, and shows restaurants and/or monuments that are close to your hotel. Google Trips gathers all the travel information from your Gmail account, easily storing it offline so you’ll have access to it with or without Wi-Fi. Looking to travel lighter and save time? Consider using the app’s destination-based features as an alternative to lugging around a heavy guidebook or digging through a ton of emails to find your reservations.
Perfect for organizing that epic road trip you’ve always wanted to take, Roadtrippers not only plans out your driving route but also lets you book hotels along the way. The free app is especially useful for finding interesting and off-the-beaten-path places to visit as you go, helping you find cool restaurants and one-of-kind spots that you can bookmark and go back to during the trip.
Packing Pro helps organize your suitcase with a checklist that breaks down what you’ll need by category. Start by telling the app how many days your trip will be, where you’re heading and what the weather is supposed to be like. You can also add other relevant information, like whether or not you’ll have access to a washing machine or if you’re going to be swimming. The app then offers a tentative list of clothing, footwear and other necessities, which you can amend and save. In addition to packing lists, the app also reminds you of any important things you’ll need to accomplish before traveling, like renewing your passport, getting vaccines or buying a first-aid kit.
With PackPoint, you’ll be able to relax and just pack what you’re told to pack. The app shows you what to bring based on the length of your trip, the weather in your destination, and any activities you’re planning along the way. If you’ll have access to laundry facilities in your destination, PackPoint even allows you to account for washing your clothes and wearing them multiple times. Just download and install the app, type in the city you’re visiting, and plug in your travel dates. Don’t wait until the day before your trip—start packing now!
Once you’re ready to book your flights and hotels, use Skiplagged to find the best rates and deals. The free app offers clear and concise search features and is so user-friendly that even the most technology-impaired can still figure it out. The app also has plenty of nifty filter options when it comes to booking hotels, so you can select the features that are most important to you — like free parking or a swimming pool — and immediately see which properties will work for your criteria.
This well known travel website also offers an app – among the most popular travel apps available – which allows you to book flights and hotels easily. The app compares hundreds of travel sites in order to find you the best rates.
Airbnb is a popular online marketplace that allows users to search and rent out homes, apartments, private rooms, hotel rooms or private spaces within homes. While an Airbnb experience won’t help you to earn any elite status, it can foster a unique, local experience while traveling.
To stay in an Airbnb on your next trip, visit the website or use the app. Enter the location that you’re planning to visit, select a check-in and check-out date and the number of guests included in the stay. Airbnb will suggest local experiences as well as rooms and homes to rent. You can filter results based on the home type, price, booking method, amenities and more. If find something you like, you can book directly through the app.
Feature photo by Darren Murph / The Points Guy
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