With gloomy January out of the way, but still months to go before the UK summer arrives, you may be already thinking about a warm getaway to keep the winter blues at bay. Booking a trip used to be a long laborious task of flicking through holiday brochures and calling a travel agent before you could even think about getting your sun cream out. However, today a holiday is just a few clicks away—thanks to the creation of travel apps. Through these nifty little creations we have accommodation, cheap flights, hot deals and traveller reviews all at our fingertips, enabling us to take control of how we holiday, and how much we spend. And for when we arrive in our chosen destination there are apps to make life easier such as language translators, restaurant finders and where to lay our weary heads or explore with area guides.
Here are just a few of the top travel apps to look out for:
This detailed app leaves no stone unturned when searching for your perfect getaway. Whatever long list of requirements you have for your break, this app will let you filter page by page through thousands of options until you are left with just a handful to choose from. You select the type of holiday you want, such as beach or city break, then the facilities you require and when and where you’d like to go before you reach your selection. You can even request accommodation near the waterfront, a kids’ club or somewhere with a late check out.
This app is all about sharing accommodation with people who want to stay in a particular area. The company has opened up a whole new world for people who are willing to rent out rooms in their homes, often for a good price and including breakfast. For those that can’t get a hotel or hostel room in their chosen location at a certain time, this app allows you to search for alternatives. The site includes reviews and plenty of location information but is clearly aimed at those travelling on a budget.
Airbnb has not only changed the way people think about accommodation when they’re on their travels but inspired other companies to go with similar ideas such as Airpnp, a US-based app which locates you to the nearest bathroom that someone is renting from their home.
This visually appealing app allows you to compare different travel sites to find the best deals. Users can search for flights by time of day and they are ranked in terms of price and duration. The site also features airbnb results for accommodation and places them alongside hotels, ranked in order of price and good or bad reviews which it calls its ecstasy rating.
For when you’ve booked that all important break, land on foreign soil and realize the locals do not understand you; this handy app allows you to translate what you want to say into a number of different languages. Translation company myLanguage developed the Vocre app to help with colloquialisms so you can speak like the locals, not as though you’re just reading from a translation book. With the app you speak into your phone and it can translate to and from English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Chinese and Japanese.
For those busy travellers who need to make the most of a short city break, travel app Gogobot is full of site-seeing, eating and shopping suggestions which can then be saved so you can refer back to it at any time. And if you don’t feel like sticking to the itinerary or go off the chosen track, you can search your surrounding area for new ideas, on the spot. It also has suggestions for family-friendly holidays or activities in the surrounding area.
When your holiday has come to an end, you can re-live all the best bits through Muzio, which allows you to collect photos, videos, audio and text to help tell the story which can then be shared on your social networks. This way you can show off the best bits in a bite size display that people will want to look at, keeping the magic of your much enjoyed holiday alive.
Whatever your travel desires there is an app out there which can make everyone’s selection that much easier. There’s even an app that allows you to store all your favourite holiday reads offline , perfect for any avid reader or for those who want to save packing space. So, make sure you do your research and select the ones that are relevant to you, or you could be spending all your much-earned break trying to decipher them all.