As more people resume their trips, more and more people are finding they are lacking in planning and packing practice after 18 months of staying local. The good news is that apps can help. Chances are you have the Uber, Lyft, Airbnb, and your favorite airlines apps on your smartphone. But here are five free apps that can give you a boost when you hit the road.
FlightAware is one of the most useful apps of its kind that allows you to track your flights online. It provides a live map of a flight and keeps tabs on delays, cancellations and gate changes. I find this especially useful when I have a close connection. It’s also essential when picking up someone from the airport, allowing me to track their flight and watch for any delays.
HotelTonight is my favorite app for last minute discounted hotels on same night accommodations. You can search the app by category and hotel quality. If he has made a name for himself with real last minute hotel bookings, which remains his strong point, you can also use it to book a hotel further away, from a week to several months. She now works with a large number of national and international cities, from Boston to Berlin. You can search for hotels by city but also by name, and bookmark your favorites. Hotels are categorized under headings such as basic, solid, luxury, and crashpad. There’s also “The Daily Drop,” which reveals a hotel with a lower than normal sale price but only gives you 15 minutes to book.
The MyTSA app can tell the difference between or not taking your flight. It can also help you decide what time to get to the airport. The application allows you to check the waiting time at the TSA gate at airports nationwide. You can check how busy the airport is likely to be on a specific day and time, based on historical data. Best of all, it offers live, participatory wait time estimates by other MyTSA users. There is also a searchable database of items permitted and prohibited in carry-on baggage.
If packaging seems like a half-forgotten exercise, check out PackPoint. The app tells you what to bring based on your destination, how long you are traveling, the weather at your destination, and what activities you plan to do while there. Perhaps you have a day of hiking, work, or the ultimate – traveling with a baby – to consider. You can even configure PackPoint to take into account washing your clothes at your destination and wear them again. If you’re in a rush, it’s a great way to remind yourself to pack such small but essential items as earplugs, vitamins, and business cards.
WhatsApp, which has been around since 2009, is a popular way for Europeans and Asians to communicate both at home and abroad. It was developed in the United States and is now owned by Facebook, but many Americans have never used it. It’s a shame, because this free messaging service is one of the best ways to communicate and stay in touch while you are traveling. It’s a cinch to use, especially if you are going abroad. The app uses an internet connection so you can make calls, send and receive messages, and even share photos and videos. Aside from the ease of use, its best feature is that it allows you to avoid the costs of traditional cellular calls.