The recent wave of travel apps all promise to smooth and simplify the entire route and trip planning process. From the fun to the innovative to the downright practical, there are a number of excellent services out there, all designed to put your mind at ease and help you get the most out of your travels. So search, book and explore with some of the most revolutionary new apps around.
It’s pretty common to find yourself wandering misguidedly through the streets of a new city in the vain hope of stumbling across a great little bar but, more often than not, settling for something that wasn’t really what you were looking for. Guidebooks can give you pointers to cool places, but what they lack is current info: tonight’s line-up, guest DJs, new openings etc. Berlin startup Vamos does just that. By aggregating public Facebook events that you, your friends or other users have been invited to and overlaying them on a map, it essentially provides real-time discovery of local events. And as you can filter events by various factors, you can quickly find exactly the kind of event you’re in the mood for.
Flying has become a stressful experience, tainted by the hassle of stopovers, security checks and screaming children. The developers of this new app Flying hope to re-inject some fun into the process. It’s a great way to manage your flight – getting up-to-date information about core services like delays, gate changes and cancellations – while further enhancing your experience with some pretty cool social elements built in; for example, you can find out how many times it would take your flight to travel the distance to reach the moon.
The premise behind the community-powered OutTrippin web-app is really quite straightforward: Why spend hours rifling through travel guides and juggling dozens of open tabs when you could just ask an expert to do it for you? You simply enter where, when and what kind of trip you have in mind, and OutTrippin does the rest. Based on this information, it compiles a list of offers from top bloggers and travel writers pitching suggestions inspired by their own knowledge and experiences that are customised to your own specific preferences. You pick out your favourite trip and receive a comprehensive list detailing travel recommendations and insider tips. It does come at a fee, but this is refunded if you’re not fully satisfied. A great way to ensure an authentic but informed trip.
Next time you’re hurtling through the air, check out MondoWindow, an app that displays an interactive map of the terrain beneath you at that very moment in time. Flickr pages and Wikipedia articles offer explanations and information about the places you fly over, directing your attention to the stuff that is so easily missed when zooming from A to B. Unfortunately, it’s currently only available in the US and on planes with internet connection, though it should be jetting over to Europe in the near future.
A leading app for last-minute hotel bookings, JustBook helps keep travelling simple and spontaneous. A number of hotels per day and city are pre-selected and categorised as either “luxury”, “upscale”, “design” or “comfort”, with last-minute bookers typically enjoy savings of up to 50 percent off the original online price. Whether you’re planning an impromptu city break, looking to stay in the city after getting held up in a meeting or simply keen to discover new and interesting hotels in your area, it’s an ideal app for leisure and business travellers alike.
Susannah Taplin is part of the team at GoEuro, a new internet platform that helps travellers compare and combine air, rail, bus and car travel options.