Originally published at Priority Pass
Every little bit helps – especially when you’re traveling. No one wants to stare at their phone or tablet the whole time, trying to figure out the best place to eat or the best route from A to B. Exploring a new place should be all about freeing yourself up and being fully immersed in the new experience.
We’ve put together a selection of top apps available on both iOS & Android, so you can get back to enjoying the moment. Just make sure you took care of connectivity services before going abroad. Use a portable Wi-Fi router, so you never go offline (apart from when you want to) whatever destination you choose.
PLANNING THE TRIP
Best for Fare-Watching: Hopper
Booking travel just got easy. Hopper is a mobile-only travel booking app that analyzes billions of airfare and hotel prices a day to tell you whether to wait or book your trip – and even predicts prices for flights with 95% accuracy up to 1 year in advance. Type in your destination and a color-coded calendar will show you the cheapest (and most expensive) dates to fly. Hopper will then recommend whether you should buy now or hold off.
Best for Filtering Airlines and Hotels: KAYAK
KAYAK is a travel agency and metasearch engine searching hundreds of other travel sites at once to find the information you need to make the right decisions on flights, hotels & car rentals. Start your travel planning is easier with an app that aggregates the best fares from most airlines, filtering flight options based on airline preference and departure times. Once booked, you get updates on flight status, airport terminals, and security wait times.
Best for Finding Unexpected Destinations: Skyscanner
Like Hopper, Skyscanner also helps you find the best airfare rates by alerting you when prices dip. The app is available in over 30 languages and is used by 100 million travellers looking to compare costs and save money every month. Skyscanner’s “everywhere” feature, however, allows you to look for surprising destinations simply by sorting by your budget and your travel timeframe. You didn’t think you’d go to Europe this summer, did you?
AT THE AIRPORT
Best for Duty-Free Shopping: Inflyter
In a rush to get to the airport in time… to do some duty-free shopping? Inflyter, the airport retail and duty-free ordering platform, allows you to pre-purchase duty free goods ahead of travel and collect them from a locker at the airport. Browse and buy items ahead, save time and ensure availability. The mobile app brings a seamless travel experience, making air travel a little less stressful!
Best for Ordering & Collecting Food: Grab
Traveling, hungry, but don’t have time to wait in line for food? Grab a better airport experience. Grab allow you to order and collect food at the airport. The app lets you order food and securely pay from your phone, then walk straight to the pickup counter without waiting in line. You can also view a map of each airport, so you don’t have to wonder what restaurants and stores you’re missing.
Best for Finding an Airport Lounge: Priority Pass
Priority Pass has more lounges and airport experiences around the world than any other program, with over 1,300+ locations in 620 cities across 149 countries. The new built-in Digital Membership Card gives you access to participating lounges and airport experiences with a simple scan of your mobile device. Relax in a VIP lounge with complementary drinks, refreshments and pre-flight bites.
ON THE GO
Best for Translating: Google Translate
The free multilingual machine translation service developed by Google helps users translate text. Take a new photo in the app of that menu in a foreign language you’ve been staring at, and have it instantly translated! Don’t forget about Google Maps, either. The web mapping service offers satellite imagery, aerial photography, street maps, 360° interactive panoramic views, real-time traffic conditions, and route planning in over 220 countries and territories.
Best Last-Minute Hotel Deals: HotelTonight
HotelTonight finds last-minute deals on hotels near your location, ranging from “basic” to “luxe” options, including unique boutique hotels. The app allows you to filter for location, dates, the number of guests, whether the hotel is “pet friendly” or not, as well as other amenities. While AirBnb and Bookings are hugely popular when taking the time to plan in advance, sometimes you just need to find somewhere to sleep tonight – and fast.
Best for Finding Info on The Ground: TripAdvisor
The world’s largest travel platform allows you to compare low prices based on the over 700 million reviews of 8 million destinations, including hotels, restaurants, museums and attractions, in 28 languages. You can even follow friends and travel experts for advice on your interests, view travel videos, read articles, and write your own reviews when you take a break from walking at that quirky café it helped you discover.