5 travel apps for your next adventure

Last updated: July 18, 2018

Whether you’re taking flight or hitting the road, these apps will help you travel smart. Like a digital concierge, they’ll show you hidden gems and great deals – for budget backpacking and luxe vacationing alike.
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KAYAK Flights, Hotels & Cars

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Why we love this
  1. 1The ultimate travel booker: Find flights, cars, and accommodations with the help of sophisticated search filters
  2. 2Compare flights (including multi-airline journeys) with the option to include flexible dates and nearby airports
  3. 3Know when to book: See if a flight price is likely to rise or drop with price forecasts and airfare history charts
We like Kayak for cars and hotels, but flights is where it blows us away. Monitor prices in a watchlist, view and import all your plans, track flights, and get security wait time estimates. Feeling spontaneous? Choose “Explore” and set basic parameters (say, a budget and temperature preference), then see what the map suggests.

Guides by Lonely Planet

Offers in-app purchases
Why we love this
  1. 1Dive into your next destination with the help of thoughtfully curated city guides
  2. 2Read recommendations for where to eat, drink, shop, sightsee, and more – and bookmark your favorites
  3. 3Get the skinny on your city in “Need to Know”: transportation tips, cultural trivia, budget estimates, and more
With guides for over 200 cities, this Lonely Planet app offers the same kind of practical, well-researched information the publisher’s known for in print. Each city guide you open is downloaded, so everything – including pinned maps – is available offline. We’re big fans of the phrasebooks and neighborhood guides (though not every city has them).
Why we love this
  1. 1Last-minute planners can score incredible deals on short-notice stays — from basic to high-end
  2. 2Hotels are carefully curated and screened for quality, each listed with a helpful mini-review
  3. 3Browse local deals and top getaways to jump on offers within driving distance or at trending destinations
Eleventh-hour escapes are this app’s sweet spot. You’ll find deeply discounted accommodations, categorized by quality and style – like “Charming” or “High Roller.” With certain bookings, you can connect to an in-app concierge for special requests and local tips. Note that some hotels won’t let you choose your room type, and cancellation policies are strict.
Why we love this
  1. 1Befriend locals and fellow travelers – and find a couch to crash on – wherever you roam
  2. 2Be safe by staying with verified users and reading references from “surfers,” hosts, and personal contacts
  3. 3Explore with others: Post an event or join someone else’s, from a hike or happy hour to a road trip
Solo wanderers and anyone eager to connect with new people will find much to love in this vibrant community of locals and travelers. If you’re on a tight budget or looking for a homestay experience, reach out to hosts to find a spare room (or couch). Simply looking for someone to explore with? See who’s available to “hang out now.”
Why we love this
  1. 1Effortlessly document your adventures and let others follow along with this beautiful travel journal
  2. 2Track your travels (even offline) just by carrying your phone, then see your route and geotagged photos on a map
  3. 3Turn your travel moments into a printed photo album without leaving the app
This designed-for-travel journal lets you add multiple photos and a note to each entry. Save drafts of in-progress posts, and share each to the in-app community and social media, or privately with a secret link. Get longer battery life (at the expense of some location accuracy) by tapping “battery saver.”
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