Planning a dream holiday can be a pleasure and a pain. With so much choice and limited time to play with, it’s natural that, as with so many things in life, we’re increasingly relying on technology to ensure we get straight to the good stuff during our getaways.
As a travel PR team, we’re an inspired and informed bunch when it comes to making the most of our annual leave allowance. The Lucre Leeds office shares their recommendations for the best, free travel apps to install now that will help you discover a new destination and get more out of your next holiday.
Whilst Trip Advisor and Lonely Planet have long been favourite tools for holiday planning, if you’re looking for off-beat ideas, Culture Trip is a great place to start. Its collection of round-up articles are perfect for living like a local or at least considering things to see, do and eat beyond the tourist traps. The coverage is extensive – most cities, regions and countries are covered by hundreds of articles that will whet the appetite. Check out your chosen location or use it for inspiration for where you might like to visit next. (Free, iOS and Android)
Once you’ve chosen your location, the planning really starts. Luckily our fantastic client, Holiday Extras, has developed a new app to help pull all your ideas and trip information together, making the process so much easier. HEHA! stores your booking confirmations, your itinerary and your wish list excursions in one, easy to see place and will send you a reminder if there are things left on your to-do list. Because we all need a little help staying on top of life admin! It even enables you to have group conversations with your travel pals within the same app, so you can share ideas, discuss the details and document your travels via photos and links uploaded to your space. (Free, iOS and Android)
While You’re Away:
Since data roaming charges were dropped in most of Europe, the issue of accessing maps has become less of a concern on the continent. But, that said, there are still pockets of the planet where data access is difficult on the move and this app is perfect for such moments. With 50 million downloads it’s become a life saver for travellers on the road, providing access to detailed offline maps for destinations worldwide. Explore points of interest or create your own pins to plan your personalised trip and navigate confidently whether you like to bike, hike or take to the open road. Give it a go when you fancy a change from Google Maps, or you forgot to download the map in advance. (Free, iOS and Android)
There’s nothing quite like that feeling of faint unease when you realise you have no idea how to get anywhere in a brand-new city, without racking up an impressive Uber bill. That’s where Citymapper comes in. This handy app will make you feel at home on public transport systems in city break destinations, giving clear instructions on how to get from A to B fuss-free and often how much it will cost you, too. If you’re more comfortable above ground than below, you can make the selection of bus only and cycle routes. (Free, iOS and Android)
Whether you’ve planned every minute of your holiday or opting for a more spontaneous experience, there’s every chance a little local lingo will help you get that bit more out of your break. From having a friendly chat with the neighbours to booking a recommended restaurant, you’ll likely have a better reception and outcome if you can speak the language. Speaking English in a generic accent is just not going to win you any favours. Get a better table, an insider tip and practice good traveller etiquette with Google Translate, which can help find the right phrase and top up your language skills on the move. (Free, iOS and Android)