Once upon a time, travellers were weighed down with an unending list of travel essentials: guide book, travel diary, fold-out map, train timetables and conversion rates. And while the need for organisation hasn’t changed, thankfully technology has: these days all you need is one phone ready to go with the best travel apps.
Of course when it comes to travel apps, there are plenty to choose from. That’s why we’ve done the research for you to create our list of 10 apps every traveller needs, whether you are planning your next trip, on the road or sharing your stories.
Perfect for: backpackers, road-trippers or anyone planning trips with multiple destinations
If you’re trying to work out the quickest route from Vienna to Belgrade or how much the journey from Paris to Barcelona will cost, Rome2rio is the app for you. Simply enter your current location and planned destination and the app will present you with all your travel options – be it by road, rail or plane. You can then go directly to booking partners to get your tickets. The app even knows how long it will take to drive from Berlin to Timbuktu (6 days and 17 hours, FYI).
Available free for iPhone.
Perfect for: the organisationally-challenged
The perfect helping hand to keep track of your travel plans, TripIt is an organisational tool which automatically creates a master itinerary for your journey. Once installed, TripIt automatically reads comfirmation emails and collects data to create an itinerary – without users having to lift a finger. The travel schedule can then be accessed on any device and even shared with friends.
DB Navigator – Deutsche Bahn
Perfect for: interrailers and train travellers
A bundle of fine-tuned efficiency that only the Germans could deliver, Deutsche Bahn’s DB Navigator app is low on charm but big on data. Indispensable for train travellers, DB Navigator has train schedules covering the whole of Europe and provides up-to-date information on prices, delays and platform changes. Despite its less-than-inspiring appearance, the app is incredibly easy to use – a must for anyone relying on rail.
ON THE ROAD
XE Currency App
Perfect for: anyone travelling outside of the UK
We’ve all been there: you’re deliberating over an important purchase and the calculator is out while you try to work out just how many Rupees there are to the Pound. Luckily, the XE mobile currency app can do all the hard work for you. While it might not be the most exciting travel accessory, the app is simple, easy to use and reliable. Users can even view values in several different currencies at once, making it great for trips across several countries.
Perfect for: compulsive tweeters, bloggers, social media addicts
When you’re on the road, finding a reliable free Wi-Fi connection feels a bit like stumbling upon the Holy Grail. Enter Wi-Fi Finder. This handy app will show you the connection options closest to you, ranked according to distance, strength of signal and cost. You can even download city maps ahead of your trip to avoid data charges on the road.
Perfect for: any British person
Ok, so a weather app is never going to be the most thrilling thing you download from Google Play, but we have to say this one is really, really good. What sets Weather Underground apart is the amount of data it provides: forget a simple sun symbol to round up a whole 24 hours, instead you can find information hour-by-hour for the next 10 days, letting you know exactly when the inevitable rainfall is expected.
Perfect for: writers
Taking holiday sharing to a whole new level, Bonjournal is a chic travel-diary app, which helps you create inspiring journals to document your travels. Offering a blank canvas, the app allows you to document and customise your stories however you choose, with a limitless text box and a selection of photos. Users can add several entries to each journal, which features and attractive cover image and can then be shared with friends or printed as a PDF – creating the perfect memento of your trip.
Available free for iPhone.
Perfect for: semi-pro photographers
Hugely popular amongst both budding and expert photographers, Snapseed is a one of the best apps available for getting the most of your travel shots. Unlike Instagram, Snapseed allows you to not only touch up an entire image, but also tweak or alter certain problem areas. Users can experiment with a range of technical tools and filters or simply use the one-tap Auto Correct to improve image quality – a must for anyone serious about photo editing.
Perfect for: off-the-beaten-track travellers
If you’re always on the lookout for dynamic new social media platforms, then Trover is for you. Encompassing the best features of Instagram and Pinterest, Trover lets you discover insights about your destination through inspiring photos. Users can connect with other travellers and create their own albums to share their own stories and experiences – you might even discover a few hidden gems.
Perfect for: anyone
Of course, we couldn’t compile a list of the best travel apps without sneaking in our own. The only accommodation app you’ll ever need, trivago compares over 700,000 hotels from more than 200 booking sites worldwide. With extensive filter options, over 140 million hotel ratings and 14 million photos, the app allows users to find their ideal hotel at the lowest price.
The app also features real-time price comparison and room availability, as well as GPS location services making it perfect for last-minute bookings on the road.
What’s more, the trivago app allows users to save an average of 36% on each booking.