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There are a crap ton of apps that could be beneficial to have during your travel abroad! But which ones are the most necessary or beneficial? Aside from the obvious map, accommodation, and flight apps, here are a few apps I feel I benefited from using on my trip, and I think you could benefit from too! 🙂
Pretty boring, but this app really came in handy for me, because you can add any currency to your list. I had euros, HUF (Hungary’s currency), and USD on my list. You enter the amount of money you are working with at the top, and then it translates it to its equivalency in all of your other listed currencies. As a for instance, Hungary’s currency was especially tricky, since 5 USD is equivalent to about 1,483 HUF. So, yeah, this app helped me a lot. I used it in every situation involving money just to be confident I knew how much USD I was taking from my account.
Trains and buses were how I got from one city to another, so this app was useful in finding and booking those tickets. It’s super easy to use. You choose one way or round trip, pick your departure and arrival locations, hit search, and bus, train, and flight options pop up. (Note: I never used the flight option.) Typically, there are a ton of options for each tab, all at various times and prices. Once you book, you conveniently have a mobile ticket available.
I think this one is a given. I didn’t need it that frequently, but there definitely were some cities that were a little more off the beaten path that practically required it. It also came in handy in restaurants that didn’t have English versions of the menu, because you can actually use your phone’s camera to scan the menu and translate it. Don’t forget to download the languages that you plan to need translation for while you have cell service or WiFi!
I used this app to look up activities in whichever city I was in. It has tours, cooking classes, photo shoots, and other experiences all categorized, and it even lets you skip standing in line for tickets. Once you select an activity that catches your eye, it lists the highlights, what to expect, inclusions, exclusions, cancellation policies, what to know before you go (if there’s a dress code, timings, accessibility, etc.), and reviews. You purchase tickets through the app, and then emailed a ticket. I really love the convenience and the ease of navigating this app to find stuff to do.
Rick Steve’s Audio Europe
Europe is soooo full of history. It’s great to go around and look at the sights, but learning the history behind them is a big part of the experience too. There are actually a lot of cities that have free walking tours — just google “[name of city] free walking tours,” and I’m sure plenty of options will pop up (but read the reviews before picking!). I did one in Budapest, and it was a really great experience! But sometimes, I didn’t want to walk with a crowd and just wanted to march to the beat of my own drum, so I used this app! You have access to a number of free audio tours as well as some interviews, travel tips, and other information. You do need WiFi or cell service to download the files. Once they’re downloaded, you can listen to them wherever, whenever. Some of the walking tours even have PDF maps to complement them.
Like a Local
This is another app I used for finding activities in whichever city I was in. I used Headout for the more touristy activities, like my tour of the Colosseum. However, I used Like a Local to find places that might be a little more under the radar. I found some really unique bars and restaurants as well as some cool lookout points of cities from this app. Like a Local is also divided into categories such as tour, eat, party, see and do, and shop. You can create a list for each city — simply add the activities you want to do there to your list, and refer back to it as often as you need to. Once you select an activity that piques your interest, it will take you to a page with:
- an explanation of why locals love it
- why you should visit
- special tips
- the address
- comments from other people who have visited
There are soooo many travel apps out there that make our lives easier or help us find activities to do. These are just a few of the ones I feel really helped me while I was on my trip! But, I’m curious:
What apps do you frequently use while traveling? Share ’em with me in the comments below!