Top Travel Apps for iPhone

Sep 14, 2016

Going abroad, domestic tours, and general travel has been drastically altered within the last two decades as it has become less expensive with even greater accessibility to various means of transportation. While the costs and ease associated with traveling has changed, a crucial aspect remains the same throughout time, namely that of planning. For those who fail to plan in advance, visiting new areas can be confusing, expensive, and overall cumbersome and highly stressful. To counter this, the App Store makes available thousands of travel apps which are aimed at enhancing the travel experience through planning, navigation, identifying point of interest, and travel management for trips of any duration. Whether for weekend travel or week-long vacations, this list article identifies those must have apps for making traveling simple and enjoyable.


The burdensome task of managing multiple itineraries can make traveling a hassle as confusing details such as dates and locations can be overlooked. TripIt provides a solution to this as an app that helps keep track of itineraries among other things. The simplicity of TripIt makes it enormously  powerful for frequent travelers and those who travel less often alike. All that is required of users is to send the confirmation email from their travel agents or airlines to [email protected] and TripIt automatically uploads the plans onto the app. Through easily syncing all itineraries into a single app, travelers are able to quickly refer to where they must go at what time across all itineraries to reduce the stress of coordinating them individually. Other notable features of TripIt include the ability of users to share their trip itineraries with their families or friends as a way to inform others of where they are or where they will be as well as calendar syncing. A must-have for those who wish to amalgamate multiple itineraries into a single place, TripIt provides a comprehensive solution to travel management.


Navigating through a foreign city can be a challenge, especially if exorbitant roaming data rates deter the use of mapping applications such as Google Maps. This is further made more difficult if not all streets are named or lack the infrastructure to be identified on a map. HERE WeGo provides a solution to this by outlining a detailed, turn-by-turn navigation system for more than 1200 towns and cities in more than 100 countries worldwide which can be downloaded for easy offline access. The app also comes with support for various modes of transportation a user wants to take such as driving, walking, train, or bus, and even includes indoor maps for select public buildings. While other mapping apps may provide more robust features, HERE’s offline maps and commute directions make it a great option to avoid roaming data fees and is essential for travelers with limited access to GPS or an available network to connect to.


For business travelers, managing expenses and reports is a task which distracts from work and consumes time. Expensify increases the productivity of business professionals or the spending habits of travelers by making it simple to maintain expense reports. The app allows users to manually track expenses, photolog receipts, and even import purchase information from their credit cards for IRS validated eReceipts. One of the most notable feature of Expensify is Smart Scan which allows users to photograph a receipt and have it “read” by the app through OCR to be automatically generated as an expense. In addition to receipt scanning, Expensify includes input options for travel mileage, time and rate based expenses, as well as automatic currency conversion, making it perfect for those seeking a simple and convenient solution to managing expenses while traveling.


Packing prior to a trip is rarely a task which travelers look forward to. While necessary and involves a lot of planning, an app which aims to make it an easier process is PackPoint, a travel packing tool that provides a checklist of travel essentials depending on the nature of the trip. Users simply create a trip profile with their destination, duration of trip, and purpose of travel and the app automatically creates a customized packing and luggage checklist that takes into account whether a user is traveling for business or pleasure, the type and amount of clothing to pack based on the weather forecast, as well as other various factors. The app is highly applicable for those who enjoy traveling but are not fond of the hassle that is associated with the packing process. PackPoint also comes with a variety of premium features, such as TripIt integration for automatic packing list creation.

Time Out

The Time Out app provides a comprehensive directory of interesting activities to do in cities around the world. With coverage from Accra to Amsterdam, Edinburgh to Singapore, the app has tasks ranging from bars, restaurants, attractions, and events to ensure a task for any demographic. Made even more useful for traveling to a new area, the event finder feature is a particularly useful tool which assists users in finding the most popular concerts, festivals, or one-off events which are taking place nearby for quick and convenient navigation. Users can also book restaurants and concert tickets through the app and create a customized travel guide for their holidays. When looking for activities to do in a new city, Time Out offers a perfect directory for the most popular attractions for any age group.

Hipmunk Hotels & Flights

If you’re looking to find great flights and hotels, Hipmunk can help. The app lets you search through multiple services when booking your flight, allowing you to find the cheapest option, if that’s what you’re looking for, but also supports sorting by “agony” — things like bad seats, stopovers, and overnight flights. You can also pit hotel deals against each other with the app and save money by finding the best deals (or the least awful options) on everything.

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Kayak Flights, Hotels & Cars

Another app for booking your travel and accommodations, Kayak sets itself apart from other apps by making it easy to book rental cars alongside your flights and hotel rooms. It also packs itinerary management capabilities and is smart enough to gather all your travel data together when you book, so you can keep all your important info — like what car you rented and what your departure time is — in one place.

TripAdvisor Hotels Flights Restaurants

When you get to where you’re going, you’ll want to know what you should do in the places you visit. That’s where TripAdvisor comes in: It includes tons of reviews, photos and tips about what restaurants to eat in, what locations and attractions to visit, and more. The app can help you book a good hotel in your price range, or locate attractions near your location to find something to do quickly.

Hotel Tonight

Lots of apps are handy for finding and booking a hotel room, but Hotel Tonight is all about helping you find accommodations immediately — as in later on the day in question. It helps by making it easy to find good rates even at the last minute, and by curating results by location and hotel quality to ease the decision-making process when you’re booking.


Quickly and easily find somewhere to stay, almost anywhere in the world with Airbnb. From a 10$/night dorm room to 1000$/night luxury house. The options are yours for the choosing. Provides a convenient map view and filtering options to help narrow down your search.

Expedia Hotels

The strangest thing about Expedia Hotels is that it took so long to come to an iPhone. Other than that, the app is a lean, mean hotel booking machine. You can book a room in over 130,000 hotels spread across 20,000 cities worldwide in just a handful of screen taps.

It’s incredibly easy to find the best deal and the number of sort options combined with solid user reviews means you’ll rarely be led astray for your stay. You can even find directions to any hotel you’re looking at via a Google Maps screen. If you’re booking a hotel, this is the app with which to do it.

Travelzoo | Travel Deals, Hotels, Flights, Restaurants, Entertainment

Travelzoo is the hookup for great deals every week. I’ve used them for awesome trips to Iceland and Florida. If you love travel deals, give this some space on your device.

Curb – The Taxi App

I used Curb for the first time in Austin for SXSW and it’s wonderful! Taxi Magic allows you to find, call, track and sometimes pay for your cab all from your iPhone. Of course, the cab company has to be participating in the “magic booking” system. If they don’t offer “magic booking,” you’ll still get a list of nearby companies to call.

SeatGuru by TripAdvisor

Picking the right seat on a flight can be important. Different planes offer different amenities in certain locations, and it’s not always clear what’s offered where. Plus, rates can differ greatly depending on what seat you grab — so SeatGuru provides all kinds of information, from airline ticket rates based on seat (with the added ability to book tickets with the app’s help) to reviews of different seats and their locations by airline and plane.

AroundMe (Free)

As the name suggests, AroundMe tells you what’s near you based on your device’s GPS data. That can help you find just about anything from a restaurant to a barbershop. Businesses are divided by type to make finding the one nearest you as easy as possible, and you can also browse information about the businesses to find things like their phone numbers and websites.

Where To Eat? – Free – GPS Restaurant Finder (Free)

Sometimes when you’re in a strange new place, you just need somewhere relatively close by that won’t make you sick. Where To Eat? will find something better than that for you, but it does a great job keeping geography in mind. With over 45 cuisines and 30 food types, you’ll have quite the choice of selections, too.

Where To Eat? will even supply turn-by-turn directions for you to get to the restaurant you end up choosing. That’s a great feature for travelers in an unfamiliar town. And if you can’t decide what to eat at all, a quick shake of the app and Where To Eat? will find something for you in a hurry.

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Urbanspoon – Restaurant & Food Reviews

Half the fun of traveling is eating. If you are looking for great restaurants Urbanspoon is still among the bests. Use the web to create a wishlist, use browse and map for best results. With the iPhone app you can book restaurant reservations.

YP – Yellow Pages local search (Free)

If you need information about the businesses and other facilities around you, YP is the place to get it. The app lets you search for businesses or check the area around you on a map with the help of GPS data, and provides lots of information about local businesses wherever you are. You can also make calls to businesses from the app, check reviews, see photos, and share listings over the Internet with others.


If you are in a new city, Yelp is very useful. It gives you user reviews for many places, photos and ratings. Which restaurant has free Wi-Fi, what kind of food they provide, etc. This one transverses the travel category, but it’s one that I always use in new cities. It’s the best way to find where to eat and what to do, with user reviews and accounts from real people.

Oh, Ranger! ParkFinder (Free)

An app ideal for the would-be camper that doesn’t know where to start, Oh, Ranger! ParkFinder is a massive app that has information on thousands of different public lands including state and national parks, national forests and even US Army Corps of Engineers recreation centers.

If you’re looking for something specific to do while you camp, you can search for the nearest ones that support 20 activities including caving, climbing, fishing, golfing and boating. Even if you already think you have the best camp site mapped out, Oh, Ranger! ParkFinder might be worth a look to see if there is a better one out there.

Galileo Offline Maps – OSM based project for hikers & bikers traveling the wilderness

Create and edit custom maps on your desktop and transfer for use with Galileo Offline Maps. Never have to worry about roaming charges and have access to all the topographical, bike route, driving or otherwise coordinate relevant information you need.

Point Inside Maps for Airports & Malls

Basically this app will show you around airports and malls. Might seem silly but for those of us that don’t live at either having a guide without having to find one is very nice. Do you park in obscure places at the mall, enter through a side door and then wonder where that one store you’re going to is located? Do you spend time looking for a directory just so you can find the place you’re looking for? No more. This app tells you what is where and when it comes to airports and malls this is extremely useful, especially if it’s a place you’re not familiar with.

Lonely Planet

Lonely Planet comes with 50 guides. I used this app so many times it’s not even funny. The spoken part of the app is fantastic as it’s slow enough for you to learn the words, which is good as it’s unlikely you’ll want to whip out your phone in every location. Oh, and it works offline.

WorldMate Travel Plans & Flight Tracker

If you’re taking on the world, be sure and take WorldMate. This app has been with me for years now. It is a reliable must on my list and they’re always adding useful features. It is for sure the first one out of the app gate when I’m flying. I’ve used it to track time zone changes, check weather, search flights, convert currency, calculate tips, and share my trip details.

Packing Pro

Easily and quickly build and maintain packing lists with Packing Pro. Allows you to define the amount and types of luggage you’re bringing and use templates of trip types, I.e. Business trip vs. Beach vacation and suggests appropriate packing lists that are fully editable. I’m always making lists of things to bring and then losing them, so this helps me stay organized.

While this list article provides a collection of traveling apps from packing to finding activities to do, using these travel apps in combination with one another can drastically improve the traveling experience.

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Kevin Chau

Following my passion in the realm of business and entrepreneurship, I am always eager to develop skills that enable me to learn, build, and grow. My previous projects, both academic and personal, reflect my dedication towards expanding and applying my theoretical knowledge for practical results in these fields.

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