It used to be that planning for a trip meant hours of research, stocking up on travel guides and maps and relying on luck to discover the hidden gems at your destination. Nowadays there are hundreds of smartphone apps designed to take the guesswork out of traveling.
We've rounded up some of our favorites to help you make the most out of your vacation. 'Appy travels, pirates!
Organize Your Trip:
Google Trips is a great way to keep all your travel plans and documents in one place. Keep your travel reservations handy by inputting them manually or having them automatically uploaded from Gmail. With built-in city guides, customizable day plans and offline travel info and maps, Google Trips is also a great all-in-one companion app.
Tripit is another great way to compile all of your travel details and make sure your trip runs smoothly. You can easily create itineraries, access your important info offline and see real-time flight updates during your trip. As with Google Trips, you can add all of your hotel and flight bookings manually or have them automatically uploaded when you get a confirmation email.
Discover The Best Food, Drinks & Things To Do:
With over 500 million traveler reviews, TripAdvisor is the world's largest travel site and an indispensable resource for anyone looking to discover the top-rated hotels, restaurants and attractions around the world. Use the app before your trip to plan ahead or use it to look up honest user reviews and recommendations on the fly.
A personal favorite here at TravelPirates, Foursquare feels like Yelp's younger, trendier cousin. Like TripAdvisor, Foursquare has an active community of users who provide honest, helpful reviews and tips to help you find the perfect spot, wherever you are. You can create lists and save points of interest to refer to on your trip. If you enable notifications, Foursquare will let you know when you've wandered close to one of your saved spots.
Discover a new city (or delve deeper into your own) with TimeOut's curated city guides. In addition to user ratings, TimeOut includes expert articles and reviews of bars, restaurants and attractions in cities worldwide. Looking for weekend plans? TimeOut can help you discover the coolest upcoming concerts, events and activities.
Triposo is an excellent choice if you're looking for a well-rounded travel guide on the go. You can download country guides for use offline that include maps, recommended activities, restaurants, and ideas for city walks across 50,000 destinations and 3 million points of interest. Triposo also provides language dictionaries and articles about holidays and culture in your given destination.
If you're anything like us, you probably rely on Google Maps on a daily basis (got lost running around the corner for coffee? Yeah, us too.) However, if you don't already have the app, we highly recommend downloading it before your next trip. Google Maps provides real-time maps and directions, so whether you're walking, driving, biking or taking public transit, you can be sure to find to your way. Pro tip: you can download maps for use offline, which can be a life-saver when navigating in areas with poor internet connection.
Rome2rio We're big fans of Rome2rio here at TravelPirates. It's a great tool if you want to compare your transportation options to figure out the fastest, cheapest or most convenient route between point A and B. Simply enter in your starting point and destination and Rome2rio will show you flight, train, bus, ferry, and driving directions along with estimated costs and travel time.
Learn A Language:
Even a few key phrases can make a huge difference when traveling in a foreign country. Not only do locals love to see travelers make the effort, but there is also something satisfying and empowering about being able to order from a menu aloud instead of just guessing and pointing! And learning a new language doesn't have to be a chore. Duolingo, which offers 23 languages, makes learning and practicing a language fun and its format makes it easy to consume in small snippets, like on your daily commute.
Didn't have time to learn a new language before your trip? No worries! Google Translate can help you translate anything from road signs to menus, making it super handy for everyday use in a foreign country. For some languages, you can even translate conversations which makes getting directions (or numbers at the bar?) so much easier! You can also download languages to use offline so you're never without a translator.
WhatsApp is a fantastic way to keep in contact with friends back home (and new ones you make along the way!) One of the world's most widely used messaging apps, WhatsApp lets you send messages, videos and make calls internationally for free using your phone's Internet connection (4G/3G/2G/EDGE or WiFi).
Free WiFi Finder
If you don't have an international data plan, locating free WiFi on your trip is essential. app solves that problem by helping you locate WiFi nearby so you will never have to go without!
Find Amazing Travel Deals:
Last but not least, make sure you download our award-winning app! We'll keep you up to date on all the best travel deals, from flight sales to pricing mistakes to one-click vacation packages. Don't see what you're looking for? Our Search & Book tool cross-compares the best prices on flights, hotels, packages and rental cars all around the world. Set up notifications in our app to make sure you never miss a deal!