It’s time for the ubiquitous post regarding the must-download travel app–the tried and true traveler’s go to internet place for travel related fun or information.
- Tripinary-Fun and surprisingly addictive. Works like Tinder, but instead of sorting through pictures of prospective “dates & mates” you swipe through prospective travel places. It’s lust at first sunset. Then you can sort through your bucket list and look at air fares to book your destination.
- Trip Advisor-uh duh–who doesn’t look at their reviews-it is just part of the research. Enough said.
- Gate1Travel-Surprised? I have booked one vacation (I think Budapest–my hotel was noted on the “hop on/hop off” tour guide for its architecture) through their site, but I often go to their site when I want to figure out in which neighborhood I want to search for a hotel. Each of their vacation deals have this great little city centre map with pictures of the most popular attractions and sites. I can easily figure out where I want to be in the destination.
- Orbitz, Expedia, Travelocity, etc.- I plug in my search parameters and just explore-figuring out dates, hotels, activities. It’s a good starting point. Now that I’ve traveled solo for nine years now, I’m more comfortable booking directly with airlines and hotels. I’m even leaving some of the field-trip bookings and city pass purchases for when I arrive at my destination.
- The official tourism pages for my destination–it’s an efficient and convenient way to gain accurate information about my destination especially if I have enough time for a field-trip. I can access which field-trips can be executed in my stay at the location.
- Google-I use it for research about my hotel and general facts or if there is an easier way to see an attraction not withing easy distance of my hotel. I stumbled upon a random blog post about how easy it is to use the train to visit Versailles outside of Paris without booking an expensive all inclusive guided tour. I already had free entrance to the palace through my Paris Pass, I just needed to get there.
Viber-free international calls and texts to other Viber members using wi-fi (maiden voyage will be on my trip to Scandinavia–worked great!).
- What’s App-same as Viber–free international calls and texts to other What’s App members.
- A few sites I read about in a Buzzfeed article (http://www.buzzfeed.com/chelseypippin/16-useful-travel-websites-you-probably-didnt-know-about#.xx8NPola3) that I plan on trying out:
- Context Travel-online walking tours of the destination by history professors, archaeologists, and others with deep intimate knowledge of the locale.
- Jet Lag Rooster-it helps you shift your schedule three days before your trip to reduce jet lag. That will be helpful going to Asia later this year.
- Skiplagged-a flight site to book cheaper flight routes.