We all like to travel, scratch that; a lot of people love travelling. The age of social media and the content creation involving picturesque locations and scenic spots has boosted international tourism especially for countries of the Caribbean and the little island countries off the coasts of Africa, Europe and the Americas, who now have a significant portion of their GDP growth being contributed by tourism.
International travel, however, suffered a huge blow in the wake of the covid-19 pandemic in 2020 and the revenue from this industry was hard hit. However, with the ease of lockdown restrictions across the globe and the reopening of airlines and travel agencies, people all over the world are on the road to doing what they love the most: moving. So, how do you travel and make every bit of the experience worth it while minimizing the costs of travel? With the growth of technology, a lot of apps have come up intending to make travel more seamless for people. Tailored trips, deals on airfare and lodging as well as the best shopping and dining spots are some of these amazing features that characterize these apps. To go further, we will be looking at some of them.
First on our list is the “Hopper”. To travel anywhere, you’d have to get there somehow and one of the most popular means of transport is by air. Flights costs can be unpredictable and sifting through so many airlines to find the best deals can be exhausting. This is where Hopper comes in. The travel app is optimized to find the cheapest flight rates based on its large historical database. It combs the net for the best airfare and hotel prices, all you need to do is type in your destination (on the app), and a colour-coded calendar is generated which shows the best as well as the most expensive days to fly with recommendations on the best travel times. What’s more, the app sets up a price watch to track when prices drop and notifies you when the time is right. Isn’t that amazing!
Another wonder for flights’ search, is the Skyscanner which gives a very detailed look at everything that goes into making a trip. It finds the best deals of the month and gives recommendations for travel plans whether it’s weekend travel, solo, or kids-free especially when you’re on a budget. It doesn’t hurt that the app also has a feature to sort out surprising new locations based on your budget and your timeframe.
Food is a major highlight of travelling but, eating internationally can seem expensive especially when it comes to currency differences and standards of living in different places. This is where Meal Ticket comes in. This app is perfect for feeding, by finding coupons and deals for restaurants and eateries within your area. The best part is, you can show the coupon directly from your phone to the waiter without having to print which is a plus because most places would require a printed coupon. It is also nice that Meal Ticket only hosts restaurants that allow direct coupon display from phones without printing, now take a look at that!
There are situations when hotel reservations get cancelled or proper plans aren’t made earlier and you find yourself booking at the last minute. Last-minute plans and bookings are usually not cheap, especially when done over the counter. However, with Hotel Pal, you get the best deals on hotel bookings (made at the last minute!) It also allows you to search for hotel rooms by city or zip code as well as the best deals on these rooms. The app features boutique hotels, chain hotels and privately owned local motels. The fact that there are no hidden charges for bookings makes it a wonderful option.
Even with getting good deals on everything from flights to adventures, getting everything organized and remembering every piece of information from your travel plan can be more stressful than you realize. TripIt is an app primarily designed for organizing itineraries so you don’t have to miss a thing! All you need to do as a user is to forward all confirmation emails and details to firstname.lastname@example.org and the app creates a master document/template for each trip. In the case of cancellations or refund requests, TripIt can send emails on your behalf to sort out these issues. The premium TripIt memberships offer even more incredible features such as currency converter, tipping advice, refund notifications, etc.
If you plan on taking a road trip or using a car rental rather than public transportation or any other option, then filling up on gas is a must. Gasbuddy makes it easy for you to find the nearest locations where you can fill up gas at the lowest prices available. Using the app allows you to enter for a daily draw on a $100 gas card. Rather than having to look for a fuel station, you can easily find the ones available and their price range, so you can plan accordingly.
With the evolution of technology and the travel industry, planning and making trips don’t have to feel like an overwhelming task anymore. There are so many options for flights, rentals, accommodation and even feeding. Find what works for you and run with it.
(Bonus tip: Pinterest and TripAdvisor are two great apps that can give you top tips and guidelines on how best to plan, save and get the most out of your trip as well as what to look out for, best services to use and how to go about making plans!)