Looking back just 8 years and realizing that not only was it not clear at the time what an app was but that, in most cases, people traveled without a phone.
The applications are useful and some are even very useful.
I selected the travel applications which I always use and which I think can be useful to you.
Have you found plane tickets? See also on Traveljourn
Read also: Traveling by Van and Camper – Tips for experiencing an adventure on the road
Applications to always have with you – My list
I ran into the first problem: what criteria should I follow to catalog applications?
I have decided to mention them by category and to simplify reading, or if you are interested in a particular topic, click on the specific link in the table of contents.
I would like to underline that I have only selected those that I find useful and that truly reflect those that I keep in my smartphone.
Before the trip – Organize and reminder
I don’t know about you but the pre-trip makes me more nervous than other moments.
The subtle fear of having forgotten something important makes me pack and unpack my suitcase/backpack several times.
For these moments and to avoid panic I use the following applications:
PackPoint – A nice application that suggests what to pack depending on the destination and type of trip and by category. It also allows you to select quantities.
ShowShowShow – Are you sure you have all the necessary visas? Do you have doubts? This application allows you to know in which destinations it is necessary to request a visa at the Embassy, which do not require a visa and which allow you to obtain it online (e-visa).
TripIt – Simplify the organization of reservations. Once you’ve booked something, you send it to TripIt, which allows you to view travel confirmations, flight itineraries, etc.
Crisis Unit – The Farnesina application necessary for anyone traveling abroad. The application allows you to find updated information on your destination and also to report your departure. The website is viaggiaresicuri.it
Mappe online ed offline
Maps are always important, both those online and offline. Let’s not take it for granted that the internet always works or perhaps we have a plan with a few gigabytes and using an online map for many hours risks consuming a lot of data.
The main applications I use are:
Google Maps – It needs no introduction so I won’t go into further detail
Maps.me – Excellent offline map that I have been using for many years now. It is necessary to download the State/Country in which you will travel in advance to then have the map available even without having to connect.
Offline Gps – This application is also very good and conserves battery usage.
Air flights and flight reimbursement
These applications rather than searching for flights, for these I refer to the classic applications of the main flight aggregators such as Skyscanner or Kayak, allow you to manage boarding passes and documents.
CheckmyTrip – Airport panic? No problem! This application allows you to add flight details, receive notifications, access the online check of many airlines. The app also includes hotel bookings by putting all travel details in one place
Boarding Pass Wallet – The boarding pass wallet that allows you to keep all your boarding passes in one place and always be able to access them.
FlightAware – Allows you to track flights online with a real-time map and check delays, cancellations and gate changes. This app is especially useful if you have little time between flights.
An application I often use is Colibra Flights allows you to “bet” on a possible delay. If you guess the delay you are eligible for a refund. My flights have always been on time but it’s worth placing the bet the day before.
Hotels, hostels and campsites
To find accommodation while you are already travelling, an application speeds up the search. The apps I use are few but simple and intuitive.
Booking – Application of the famous site that offers hotel rooms but also apartments and hostel beds.
Hostelworld – Application mainly deals with hostels (beds in dormitories but also private ones)
Camping.info – The reference site for those traveling in a tent/camper or van and looking for campsites. The app is indicated exclusively for travel in Europe.
If it is campers or traveling in a camper or van an excellent application for finding campsites or camper parking areas is Park4Night.
The application indicates both campsites and places where it is possible to do wild camping (so you can park your camper or pitch your tent legally). It’s open source so we can add new parking or comment. Also available in the PRO version.
Life on the road – Always useful applications
These are the simplest but incredibly important applications, the ones that I never uninstall because they are always useful:
- XE Currency Converter – Application that allows you to convert currency
- Google Translate – If you are lost in translations this application allows you to find the right words at the right time
- GlobeTip – Not sure if you need to tip, or how much? This application considers 200 countries and helps you understand when it is the case and when it is not, also helping you to understand how much it is right to leave
- HappyCow – An application designed for vegans that lists more than 100,000 bars and restaurants offering vegan food.
Camper and van trips
Traveling by camper and van allows you to experience the road trip while always having your home with you.
Whether you want to stay overnight at a campsite or just want to find parking or rest areas to recharge your van/camper, water, electricity, drainage and water management, you need to know where to go.
After many months of life in a camper these are my favorite applications, they are open source so comments from campers are always welcome
- Park4Night – My favourite. There is a lot of information and it allows you to leave reviews or indicate areas in which to park
- IOverlander – This application also allows you to discover and add places where you can park. Beautiful, useful and easy to use
- FreeRoam – Like the other two sites, it is a very useful and well-made app for finding parking lots and rest areas for campers and vans. Excellent if you are traveling to the US.
Travel cost sharing
Whether you travel alone or with a group, tracking your travel expenses is important. We always know how much we are spending and, if there are 2 or more people, the risk of losing accounts is just around the corner.
For years I have been using applications that have the task of cataloging travel expenses and, at the end, sending a PDF to all participants informing who owes how much.
The best ones tried are:
- Splitwise – Application that allows you to create travel groups, enter expenses and then distribute the costs according to the chosen parameters. Available on both Android and Apple
- Travel Money – Beautiful application that works like Slitwise, the only problem is that it is only available for Android. Please note that once a spending limit has been reached, you must switch to the paid version.
Mini travel guides
There is also no shortage of apps for tourist information on what to do, where to go and other curiosities.
Among the many I tried, my preferences go to:
- The Culture Trip – Which is a great site full of information and advice. A nice and streamlined way to find information about the destination you are visiting
- GPS my City – Thousands of self-guided walking tours, travel articles, and offline city maps in over 1,000 cities worldwide
Traveling brings carefreeness and imagination flies, but we must never underestimate any dangers that may arise. Having a “Security” folder in your phone is a small step.
Among the applications that I recommend I mention:
- Sitata Travel Safe – The app monitors the world with an eye on the overall safety of the country, disease outbreaks, violent protests and anything else that could be dangerous during our travels. Ranks locations based on safety ratings and highlights regions with higher risk levels. If something dangerous happens during your trip, the app will send an alert to your phone to keep you updated
- bSafe – The app sends a live video and audio stream to selected contacts every time you activate the app via voice alarm. Whenever you feel threatened, simply say your wake phrase “SOS” and the app will launch. The selected contacts will then receive an alarm on their devices and will be able to see your GPS location on a map.