My Favourite Travel Apps
One of my favourite parts of the traveling is making the plan. That is when I learn a lot about the upcoming destinations.
There are a few apps that I frequently use, which I would like to share with you – let me know which ones you use.
Kayak.com – Kayak is a popular flight search engine, but what’s fascinating about it, are the search results for long distances – it suggests combinations with low-cost European airlines. I have to admit that I’ve never bought a ticket from kayak.com – I just use it as an information source and then I purchase the tickets directly from the airlines.
Booking.com – it is the app that I use the most when choosing places to stay. I like these guys because of their customer service (especially if something goes wrong with my stay) and because of the guides they send you when you make a booking for a popular destination.
AirBnB – honestly I am not the biggest fan of AirBnB. Maybe it is due to the fact I mostly travel for the weekends and I am always on the move. That is why I value conveniences like 24/7 Reception Desk and free cleaning services – you know that most of the AirBnB venues charge a lot for cleaning; and sometimes it takes time to arrange meeting with the host to exchange keys (however in the last years there’ve been some smart ways to do that).
BagBnB – one of my best friends found this website when we were in NYC. We had to check-out early in the morning, but our flight was late at night. BagBNB offers a list with places where you can leave you luggage for a certain period of time.
GoogleTrips – it is a great tool by Google that is fetching all your traveling data from gmail and puts in “trips” where you can find all your reservations, schedules and suggestions on places to visits. It seems to be the most effortless travel organizer.
Splitwise – a colleague of mine told me about Splitwise about an year ago and I really liked the idea of the app. When traveling with friends, you always have situations when somebody pays the whole bill for tickets, bookings or any other services. Splitwise allows everyone to enter expenses and then they are automatically split proportionally between the group members.
Turo – it is an alternative of Rent-a-car services, but following the business model of AirBNB (Car-owners are offering their own cars in a mobile app). A great option when you are in a foreign country and you need a vehicle. The only downside is that you need to return the car to the same place from where you have taken it, although in some cases you can agree a different location with the owner.
Uber – I love using Uber when I am abroad (Uber stopped their service in Bulgaria); Especially when I arrive in a country with “exotic” currency and I still do not have any “local” bills. Uber is a great and cheap alternative of the taxi services that gives you a chance to explore some aspect of the local culture as well.
Lyft – Lyft is a service very similar (read “the same”) as Uber; It is worth having both of the apps if you are not in a popular area.
Couchsurfing – Honestly I do not use Couchsurfing the way it was meant to be used. Sometimes I check it’s “Hangout” functionality when I travel alone, so I could meet other world explorers.
Instagram – if you are wondering why I’ve put it on the list (as most people are using it on a daily basis) – it is because I wanted to share how I use it when traveling: I like searching by hashtag of the destination I am about to visit and then according to the pictures I see, I often find interesting local venues.
Mark O’Travel – it is just an app that lets you mark the countries that you have visited, lived or plan to visit, so you can have some personal travel statistics.
TIP: Before traveling – check out the local Rent-a-bike services and make a registration in advance!