Thanks to technology, traveling has now become a lot easier and cheaper. From looking for the cheapest plane ticket to figuring out what the sign in front of you means, everything is just one tap away. All that is thanks to travel apps. Whether you’re traveling long term or just enjoying a few days off from work, there’s a travel app for you.
But there are thousands of travel apps in the market right now. How do you know which ones to download? For that, we scoured the internet for reviews and personal recommendations and came up with this list of top travel apps for 2020.
Best for: Flight Bookings
Its most winning feature, however, is the “search everywhere” option. This lets you search for the cheapest flights for that spontaneous weekend getaways. They also added the “Price Alert” feature so you get updated when fares go down.
Best for: Accommodation Searching
Part of traveling is searching for somewhere you can call your home away from home. Whether you’re looking for cheap dorm-type hostels or a beautiful Mediterranean villa with a pool, Airbnb has it all for you.
Basically, Airbnb is the middle man for property owners wanting to earn on the side and travelers looking for a place to stay. You look for an accommodation that suits your taste and budget. Then you book it and chat with your host to arrange the details of your stay. No cash exchange will be done as all payments are done through electronic banking channels.
In October 2019, Airbnb announced that the app is now available in 31 languages. They are also rolling out their new guest standards which is expected to take effect in early 2020. This is to better protect the rights of hosts and guests alike.
Best for: Travel Planning
It gives you the option to enter your travel information or forward confirmations manually. You can also set the app to automatically fetch itinerary-related messages from your inbox. A free version of the app is available with basic organizer features. But paying a small annual subscription fee lets you upgrade plane seats and track reward miles.
Best for: Flight Prices Watching
The app will also tell you to book now or wait for the prices to go down. If it does the latter, you can set up a price watch to notify you when prices go down.
5. Google Translate
Best for: Translation
Language barrier is often one of the most challenging things for international travelers. That’s why Google Translate made it to our list. It allows translation of over 100 languages including Vietnamese, Thai, Hindi, Arabic, French, Japanese and Italian among others. The best thing about it is you can translate each language into any language in their database, not just English.
The new upgrade also allows users to translate street signs and menus right from the app. You just have to take a photo of the sign and highlight the part with the text they want to be translated. The app will then translate it into English. It also uses text-to-speech technology to translate during conversations.
Best for: Finding Reviews
Real, on-the-ground reviews are essential in planning a successful trip. That’s what TripAdvisor is about. It currently has over 700 million reviews of more than 8 million destinations. No monetary incentives are given to reviewers and the site constantly filters out fake reviews. So, it’s the best place to go before finalizing your hotel bookings or restaurant reservations.
The app is free for both Android and Apple devices. It’s also available in 28 languages including Arabic, Chinese, Czech and Danish among others.
In October 2019, TripAdvisor announced that it will end any commercial relationships with facilities that breed or improve captive whales and dolphins. This means that some ocean parks and other aquatic attractions have been taken off their listings.
Best for: Searching for Available Airport Lounges
Countless hours spent in airport terminals are part of every traveler’s life. Waiting in airports usually involves crowded seats, slow WiFi, and bad food. But if you’re staying in lounges, the environment is totally different. Unfortunately, you can’t stay in most airport lounges if you don’t have a membership or business class tickets.
That’s what LoungeBuddy is for. You just enter your credit card number, airline status, and lounge membership. The app will then tell you which lounges are available for you at any given airport. It also gives out a list of lounges that are free to use or offers a day pass.
Best for: Cheap International Calls
Calling home from another country can be difficult and expensive. Roaming plans can cost up to triple the usual rate. Plus calling apps are virtually useless when you’ve got no internet connection. This makes the MyLine app the ultimate travel buddy.
It lets you make cheap international calls to over 150 destinations for as low as $0.001 per minute. You don’t even need access to the internet too as the app has an offline option. Call credits are available starting at only $2. It offers free unlimited international SMS too.