Going on a holiday soon? Here are a couple of iPhone and Android apps that can help you navigate, communicate, and even convert currencies when overseas
Despite the satisfaction it brings from satiating all those wanderlusting desires, travelling can actually be an overwhelming task. “How much should I pack?”, “Am I spending too much on this trip?”, “How do I ask where the bathroom is in a foreign language?” – we’re certain that all of you have struggled with these problems at some point while globetrotting. But with these handy-dandy mobile apps, we’re positive they’ll give you that smooth-sailing vacay that you deserve. Read on and find out more about these travel applications; you’ll thank us from the other side.
If you need to get your luggage in order: Pack Point
Whether you’re a frequent traveller or not, packing for your trip can be quite the hassle. And despite coming up with the same ol’ list again and again, you’ll somehow still forget a toothbrush, socks or something important or trivial that you’ll regret on the plane. But with Pack Point, you can cruise through the packing process smoothly. This app will help generate a packing list with reference to the time of year you’re travelling, the activities you’ll be embarking on, and places you’ll be visiting. No more forget this or that!
If you want to organise your travel efficiently: TripIt
Planning for your trip can be a real pain in the butt, but you can reduce the hassle by consolidating your travel plans into a simple, convenient itinerary via TripIt. This mobile trip planner can display all your trip details such as flights, hotels, cars, maps, directions, at a glance. What’s great about this is that it can help you to do all the dirty work. All you have to do is to link your email account to TripIt, and the service will automatically scan through your inbox for reservation confirmations and consolidates all the information onto a readable itinerary. You can also sync your itineraries with your contacts, on Facebook and Twitter, so your overseas mates can join you along the way!
If you need a quick language translation: iTranslate
Available for both Android and Apple users, iTranslate is the go-to when you’re lost in translation, literally. With its simple, minimalistic interface, it is easy to use. It can help you to instantly translate between over 90 languages.If you want to learn how to pronounce the foreign word correctly, the app will say it out loud for you. With its useful voice input and text-to-speech functions, you can communicate with the locals at wherever you are with ease. What’s more? You can also share the newly translated work in a text message, email or even on Facebook so you can refer back to it thereafter.
If you want to learn the local language beforehand: Duo Lingo
What’s more daunting than travelling to a country that speaks a language you have a limited knowledge of? Time to download Duo Lingo – our go-to language-learning app whenever we want a crash course in local linguistics. With Duo Lingo, you can start familiarising yourself with any of the 23 languages available on the app even before your trip, and begin practising basics in an easy, approachable manner. Its lessons are fragmented into easily digestible segments – making it easier to commit to picking up a new language. Duo Lingo can teach you a few important phrases that can definitely be put to good use when you’re in a completely new environment – like “Where is the bathroom?”, or “How much is this?”, or “No officer, I didn’t do it”.
If you need a quick currency conversion: XE Currency
The go-to site for currency conversion on the web, it’s hardly startling that the XE Currency app is popular amongst traveller, with over 20 million downloads since its launch. On top of the array of business-oriented features like rates for precious metals and historic currency charts, XE Currency is pretty handy for travellers as it’s able to convert every world currency. It also works offline, via saving the last updated rates – good news for those who are visiting places with limited connectivity!
If you want to keep your budget in place: Expensify
It doesn’t matter if you’re business traveller or are travelling for leisure, Expensify should be your best friend as it can help you keep an easy expense report. Capable of manually tracking expenses, photologging receipts and even importing purchase information from your credit card for IRS-validated eReceipts, Expensify should be your trusty app if you’re pretty uptight on your travel spending and not wanting to bust your budget. Moreover, Expensify also includes input options for travel mileage, time and rate based expenses, and automatic currency conversion.
If you’re cashless and want to travel from one point to another: Uber
It works extremely well locally, of course it’s gonna be just as handy overseas! With its sturdy reputation, it’s undeniable that Uber is useful when you need to get from one point to another when you’re without a penny in your wallet. This cab-hailing app is utterly convenient and efficient, and has great customer service that’ll aid you almost instantly, especially when you’re encountering troubles trying to flag down a cab.
If you want to use public transportation with ease: Citymapper
A reliable transit app that offers travel options via time, cost, and mass transit, Citymapper is the navigating app that you must have on your mobile phone. It is comprehensive, user-friendly and provides detailed journey-planning information such as real-time departures, disruption alerts and even cycle routes. From America to Asia, Citymapper is available in 30 cities worldwide.
If you want to save some cost on transportation: Ryde
Penny-pinchers and eco-warriors, rejoice. Here’s one for the road: Ryde is a nifty little carpooling app that matches drivers with riders going the same way – and at the end of journey, the cost of the trip will be split evenly. Saving money on daily commutes and doing our part for the environment at the same time? Count us in.
If you want to snatch the best deal on flights: Hopper
Searching for the best deal on flights? Included in Apple’s Best of 2015 poll, Hopper is the perfect app for that. This well-designed airfare prediction app analyses flights throughout the world and helps predict the cheapest flights; and it even tells you when you should grab it. You can also set alerts, so that you’ll receive the latest updates on flight prices immediately – book your flights smartly!
If you need to kill time at the airport: LoungeBuddy
While direct flights are much preferred, sometimes a stopover is unavoidable. That’s when knowing what’s available at the airport can be pretty useful. Time to get LoungeBuddy – an app that helps you find airport lounges in more than 500 airports worldwide. All you have to do is to input the details of your trip, service level and any applicable elite benefits or memberships, and LoungeBuddy will provide you with a list of locations you can access for free or for a one-time fee. And if you feel like you’ve had a fabulous experience at the airport lounge, you can even post reviews and photos to share your experience with other travellers.
If you want a roof over your head (for free!): Couchsurfing
If you’re all about that offbeat travel adventure, you definitely need to download the Couchsurfing app on your mobile straightaway. Why, you ask? On top of allowing you to meet new people from an international community of over 9 million travel enthusiasts in 120,000 cities, Couchsurfing creates an authentic travel experience as you get to stay with local hosts who can provide adventurous, unconventional itineraries – deviating away from all the typical tourist guides. What’s more? Your stay with hosts will be free. You don’t always need a queen-size bed for some shut-eye!
If you’re looking for a luxury hotel (or otherwise) at cheaper rates: trivago
Searching for hotels on the go? Then trivago is your answer. As the world’s largest hotel search, trivago can compare over 900,000 deals from more than 250 booking sites on a day-to-day basis – providing travellers the best possible rates for travel accommodation. trivago also allows you to filter your search based on price, location, and attractions within the vicinity of your preferred accommodation. Find your home away from home with trivago, and we assure you, you’ll never feel homesick no matter how long you’re gone.