Tried and True Travel Apps We Love and Recommend
’Tis the Season to Travel. Well, okay. Every season is travel season for some.
And there are a plethora of travel apps available to “make it easier” for you to travel. But who has the time to try them all out to see which one(s) work?
In our continued effort to share great tips and steer you in the right direction, our intrepid Savor Saint Louis Food Tours tour guides and behind the scenes support have provided their tried and true new and old school travel applications for you.
Free smartphone travel apps we rely upon
Google Maps – while this may seem obvious to most, there’s a trick a lot of people don’t know. You can download a fairly large section of map (easily as big as an entire city) for offline viewing and navigating. This is super helpful when traveling internationally if you don’t want to use up international roaming data when WiFi isn’t available. iOS Android
Waze — for driving directions. iOS Android
TripAdvisor — for finding restaurants [or food tours!] and easily looking up hours/contact info, etc. iOS Android
Google Maps for navigating public transit, and Uber for ride share. iOS Android
TripIt Pro — for keeping track of transportation and hotels, any any other ticket-type stuff. iOS Android
White Noise — this app is a family must for getting kids and grownups to sleep in sometimes noisy hotels, Airbnb, etc. iOS Android
TripAdvisor — a hearty second to this suggestion. iOS Android
Currency Converter Plus — to check out foreign money vs. US. iOS Android
Google Translate — for a look-see on signage, help with a conversation or to get your menu order right. iOS Android
Rick Steves Audio Europe — I download history, tours and interviews with people in the know about a certain European country or city (if you search for this other great apps specific to the area you’re traveling to will pop up). iOS Android
ConvertBee* — great for currency and weight (esp. helpful for buying stuff!), plus temperature if I forget if I need a jacket for 22°C or not. Android *not available on iOS, so try this one
Agree with all the suggestions, especially White Noise, Google Translate and Waze that the others have suggested.
MapQuest — Waze doesn’t work well everywhere (yet) so I keep a back up. iOS Android
Venmo or Cash App — cash is important to have when traveling. Venmo iOS Android Cash App iOS Android
Your bank app — Knowing what’s going on with your funds is important, especially when traveling!
HotelTonight — Just in case something happens with where you’d planned to stay (you can also use it to book in advance). iOS Android
Be sure and put in the time zone of the locale you’ll be traveling in on your smartphone clock.
Not smartphone apps but great online tools
Google Flights – The best way to research flights, especially when you are flexible in terms of departure dates, trip lengths, destinations, etc. You can build out searches with lots of different criteria to find the best deals.
Wikivoyage – A super helpful guides to cities/countries/destinations that are collaboratively edited in much the same way as Wikipedia. Always lots of “insider tips.”
“Old fashioned” travel items
Let’s face it. Cell phone batteries die (so get a great, reliable charger such as Boosa), get lost, stolen, have spotty or zero service, or a plethora of other maladies can happen with them.
The best travel combo you can still have is a pen + notebook. Having important addresses, phone numbers, etc. on paper brings peace of mind.
Paper road maps — especially if you’re on a road trip (or an atlas depending on the length of your trip). Service can be spotty once you’re out of city limits.
Two to three bags of various sizes. They’re great for dirty/wet laundry, muddy shoes, makeshift window shade, or ice bucket.
And last, but not least — if you’re flying Bev notes that TSA precheck is worth every penny. It’s $85 or $100 for global for 5 years.