The best new travel apps for your holiday this winter

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Going on holiday in 2019 is an utterly different to how it was a decade ago and has little similarity to those holidays pre-2000. Of course, we continue to fly away to experience the culture, try the food and enjoy the often warmer weather that foreign countries bring but how we coordinate our vacations and what we do when we arrive has all changed thanks to smartphone’s rapid ascent in popularity.

This guide evaluates all the new travel apps that are available to download now, covering flights, hotel and whilst you’re actually on holiday too…

Booking

The days are getting shorter, the weather’s getting bleaker by the day and all you want to do is go away somewhere to relieve the stress of work for a week or so…

Just over 10 years ago, you would have had to call in at your high-street travel agents, scanning the season’s latest holiday brochures. These days, all you need is a smartphone.

Flight

There are a whole host of different flight comparison apps on app stores and all have their own unique selling point. For the sake of keeping things simple however, we have whittled this down to our favourite three.

The only thing worse than missing a flight is actually booking them in a panic thinking that they’re going to sell-out, only to discover that they’ve fallen in price a week later — at Hopper however, this is not a concern. The app monitors 15 billion flights every day to find you the right deal. When you’re on the app, things are aesthetically pleasing as well, with colour co-ordination used to help users distinguish between the expense of the flight and the time of year.

Sometimes, all that matters is the thought of getting away, on a budget, and you’ll think about the destination later. If this sounds like you, then Kiwi will prove to be a valuable widget. Once you’ve selected your home destination, it provides you with a map and how much it will cost you to get to each destination on it. No more repetitive searching.

Has it ever occurred to you that airlines aren’t showing us the most cost-effective fares? Well, it should come as no surprise that the most economically viable flights are being hidden from us — realistically, why would they not let us pay more? Skiplagged focuses on finding the loopholes in flying — it might be that booking a longer flight, with a stop-over works out cheaper, or by getting off at certain destinations en route can save money. 

Hotel

When it comes to holiday accommodation, there’s not many apps that can compete with Airbnb. Hotels, as much as they offer a wide range of choice and variation, don’t quite match up to the quirkiness offered by property rental app Airbnb. The site, which operates in more than 190 countries in the world, offers users the potential to rent villas, single rooms, yachts, treehouses, and much more — often at a considerably cheaper rate than that of hotels. Similarly, the experience section now provides customers with the opportunity to immerse themselves in more than just the tourist board suggestions, alternatively getting involved in the activities suggested and often carried out by locals. 

While you’re there

Supposing you haven’t booked transfers when you arrive, Hotelinfo could be an absolute lifesaver. So, while your GCSE language skills proved to be of little worth here, you’ve managed to navigate your way out of the airport thanks to your inherent knowledge and understanding of exit signs. This trusty app links straight to the hotel, where you can chat to staff, ultimately getting the best directions to the hotel, or suggestions for a taxi — just remember to check your roaming tariffs. 

Similarly to not having frequent your local travel agents, traveler’s cheques are starting to become a thing of the past. In fact, we don’t require currency at all anymore. Using your debit card abroad was always somewhat of a cruel mistress, especially when you arrived home to discover a host of transaction and exchange fees had debited your account. Now however, with the invention of app-only banks like Starling and Revolut, you don’t need to incur fees for using your money abroad. All you have to do is sign up, get your card, and upload cash via your domestic account. 

You don’t even need to write your trips checklist anymore, not least because your phone can do it for you instead! Packpoint assesses the weather forecast for you on a daily basis, while also asking you the activities in which you will be partaking, so its impossible to leave your hiking boots or swimming shorts at home.

Ever walked around a city abroad and thought, ‘I’d love to know what the story behind that is’? Well, if you have, you aren’t alone! Unlike having to devote your entire day to a guided tour, you can do now find out all those unanswered questions. Simply download Detour, plug in your headphones, and listen to a fully narrated tour of the city — from a local with considerable knowledge of the area.

In this guide, we’ve shared just a few of our favourites of the many travel apps that you can enjoy so as to take some stress out of your next trip. There are an array of even more on the app stores which could make for handy additions, so why not take a look!

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