15 Smartphone Resources For Stress-Free Travel
Today we have a special guest post by Veronica Bass.
Some traveling experiences are more stressful than others but each trip usually requires a good deal of planning. Simplify those preparations with a few tricks your phone can help out with. From apps and websites to built-in features, smartphones are dangerously capable.
Whether the hardest part seems to be booking, packing, navigating, or finding things to do when you get there, this list of tools will help mitigate any hiccups along your way.
Packing is a process we should think about over the course of a few days. That’s why I love the PackPoint packing list app. I can come back to my list as I think of things, and the app reminds me of generic items I might otherwise forget.
2. Mileage Calculator
Those who will be hitting the road will want to estimate gas costs ahead of time. Use this mileage calculator to predict more accurately, that way your budget for activities when you get there won’t be infringed upon.
3. Gas Buddy
There are a few gas comparison apps but Gas Buddy is my favorite because it covers the most cities and does a great job for diesel too. Plus you can become a member for free to unlock additional savings by earning points.
Anyone flying should book, or at least browse, with Skiplagged. This app pre-inputs promo codes so you never miss a sale and it shows hidden flight options. Meaning, you buy a two or three leg ticket and only take the first or second flight. One time, I was trying to get home to Arizona from Newark. I ended up buying a flight to Cabo because it was cheaper to stop in Phoenix on the way to Mexico than to just buy a direct flight.
This app is my navigation hero. It does everything Google Maps can do, plus a few features more. Rather than seeking your own travel information, when you’re at a bus or train stop Transit automatically displays surrounding departure times. The app is the first of its kind in that it can support real-time city data.
6. Google Maps
Now you may be thinking, I already know about and use Google maps — who doesn’t? Well good start, but there are a few cool features most maps users don’t know about. To start, the offline feature. You can build and index maps through the my places feature and access them all when you’re without service or Wi-Fi.
7. Sit or Squat
This is another great app for road trippers. Especially those who consider which stop will have the cleanest restroom. SitOrSquat tracks which bathrooms are best kept so you and your family never have to worry.
8. Translate Camera
Travelers planning to leave the country should check out another cool Google tool, the translate camera. The text translation function works offline and can translate over 100 different languages. The translate camera works with 38 different languages, instantly translating text in images.
Eating healthy can be more challenging than usual when traveling. Travelers committed to eating vegetarian or vegan should check out HappyCow, a worldwide vegan and vegetarian restaurant finder.
Groupon has city pages to organize their coupons that make it very easy to save a ton on things to do and food when traveling. The discounts can range from 40 to 60 percent and most big cities have a decent number of restaurants and activities to choose from. I’ve even started to use the Things To Do In Phoenix page here at home.
11. Like a Local Guide
Like a Local Guide can’t save you cash on excursions, but it does give you the inside scoop on what to expect when you arrive. Sometimes tips from locals is just what you need to find the coolest spots or to bring the right gear.
My outdoor adventure seekers will appreciate this one. AllTrails is a collection of over 50,000 trail maps and other details that simplify the hike research process. You can get driving directions and save your favorite trails for later.
Bandsintown makes it easy to find concerts wherever you may be traveling. This is another resource I use at home too, but just plug in the artist you’re hoping to see and find out where they’ll be next.
If finding fun things to do isn’t as concerning as finding people to do it with, check out SoloTraveller. It’s a safe way to meet people while you’re traveling, as opposed to Tinder and other dating apps.
Some stresses can’t be avoided. Calm is an increasingly popular meditation app used to reduce anxiety and help people fall asleep. When it comes to meditation, a few minutes can change your whole day.
Veronica Baas is a Colorado native now living in Phoenix, Arizona where she pursues more advanced coding skills. Between managing her puppy, two jobs, and several freelance commitments she can be found at her local coffee shop or somewhere on the mountain. To read more of Veronica's published work, or to see what's in store next, check out her website!