10 Super Useful Travel Apps 2016

I never travel anywhere without my Samsung S7. We’ve been through some good times together, and some slightly bad ones too (like the time I dropped it down the loo… Hooray for waterproof phones and wet wipes!), but I really don’t think I could travel without it now.

I always have my trusty travel apps on standby whenever I go somewhere new, whether it be for checking currency rates, looking up what the weather’s doing or hunting for bargains (I’m always planning my travels one holiday ahead!). Here are 10 of the most useful travel apps in my phone right now.

(List compiled November 2016)

  1. Weatherbug

Being British, I’m basically obsessed with the weather. In England it’s pretty much guaranteed to either be raining or about to rain, so I take great pleasure in visiting other countries almost solely for their sunshine and clear skies.

Weatherbug is the best android weather app around as it’s really easy to use and gives you hour by hour breakdowns of what the weather holds for today and the next 10 days. It also has some cool features like where the nearest lightning strike has been today (eek!), but crucially it’s actually a really accurate weather app that you can count on.

weatherbug

  1. xe currency

If there’s one thing that I’m equally obsessed with, it’s currency. In fact, I have a weird habit of knowing the pound / dollar conversion rate to the nearest penny at any given time. This whole Brexit fallout has got me raging y the way 1.24 dollars to the pound? Noooooooo!

Anyway, there’s no better currency app that I’ve found than xe currency. See historical rate charts and the current rates of all worldwide currencies. Perfect for making sure you’re not being ripped off on your currency purchases.

  1. Withlocals

One of my all-time favourite travel apps is Withlocals – kind of like the Airbnb of travel experiences, you can book tours, activities and meals with real local people all over the world. Check out my dinner with a Vietnamese family in Hanoi – one of the best experiences I had in Vietnam as it really showed me what day-to-day life is like there.

My night with locals in Hanoi

My night with locals in Hanoi

  1. GateGuru

Perfect for frequent fliers, you can see all of your upcoming flights as well as find out gate info, schedule updates and alterations and security wait times. Never be late for a flight again!

  1. Google Trips

What I love about Google Trips is it syncs with all of your emails (in your gmail account) and then lays out all of your past and future trips automatically, from the confirmation emails in your inbox. It also gives you tips on things to do, food and drink and day plans in each location, as well as downloadable city guides for upcoming trips which can be used offline.

google-trips

  1. SkyScanner

An obvious choice really is the Skyscanner app, which compares the cost of flights in real time to make sure you’re getting the very best deal. My favourite feature is the ‘everywhere’ option, where you simply add your departure airport and it searches prices of flights to all over the world.

  1. Open Camera

Instantly upgrade your phone’s camera with this super-clever app. I don’t know what kind of trickery this is, but essentially Open Camera transforms your phone into a DSLR, with ultra high definition images and amazing low light settings to give your night time pics some real depth.

  1. Shazam

OK, not technically a travel app, but I am forever hearing music on my travels and wanting to know what the name of the song is so I can download it later. Shazam listens to songs and instantly tells you the name and artist, and gives you the option to download. I managed to make a big India playlist from simply Shazam-ing songs during my travels.

shazam

  1. Translate Voice

Ever wish you could understand what people are saying when you’re travelling? Well, Translate Voice listens to people, detects their language automatically and then provides a translation there and then. It’s reasonably accurate (I wouldn’t say it’s 100% effective just yet) but it could get you out of a tight spot when negotiating on prices or finding your way around a new city.

  1. Expensify

One of the best budgeting apps out there, Expensify keeps tabs on your spending and shows you exactly what you’re frittering away all that cash on, using handy graphs and charts. Midly terrifying but absolutely essential if you’re on a budget.

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Hayley is the author behind A Life of More, a travel and lifestyle blog with the goal of helping you to live a happier and more fulfilled life, whether you're currently travelling or happily settled.

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