Traveling isn’t just a fun escape from your day-to-day life — it’s actually good for you. Research shows that people who vacation regularly are healthier and live longer than those who don’t. Traveling for pleasure can also improve your mood, inspire your creative side, and make you smarter.
If we’re being honest, though, traveling can also be stressful. Sure, there are plenty of apps that promise to help keep you sane — but not all of them are as helpful as they seem. However, these six apps really deliver on their promises. Try one out before your next trip so you can minimize the chaos of travel planning and focus on enjoying your well-deserved holiday.
6 perfect apps for traveling to new places
Do you really need an app to help you pack your travel bags? Well, kind of. This simple app is actually very helpful. PackPoint creates a packing list depending on where you’re going, how you’re getting there, and how long you’ll be staying. You can customize your list based on factors such as what activities you’ll be doing, the time of year, and more. Don’t feel like making your own? Check out lists posted by other travelers heading to the same place you are.
GeoSure helps you stay on top of any health or safety concerns as you travel abroad. The app compiles data from multiple sources, including the World Health Organization, the United Nations, the Centers for Disease Control, and local agencies. This information is used to create a safety score based on factors such as crime, political unrest, environmental hazards, and other potential risks to your health and safety. Besides all the official stuff, GeoSure also helps you get the word on the street. You can tap into crowdsourced info about what’s happening right now in your travel destination, right down to the neighborhood you’ll be visiting.
TripIt is one of many similar travel planning apps. However, it’s a standout because of its comprehensive features and user-friendly functionality. Instead of giving TripIt access to your inbox (which is the case with many comparable apps), you just forward your confirmation emails to them. TripIt will then use this information to create a detailed itinerary for you. This interactive itinerary includes the dates, times, confirmation numbers, maps, weather forecasts, and everything else you need to stay on track while you travel.
It’s a calculator, it’s a unit converter, it’s ... both! Sure, you should always have a calculator available, but the conversion features are what makes this iOS app a must-have for world travelers. CalConvert can instantly show you the current exchange rate for over 150 currencies. Plus, you can use it to convert foreign units of measurement into familiar increments.
If your travel plans involve a road trip, GasBuddy wants to be your new best friend. This simple but useful app helps you find the best gas prices near you, no matter where you go. Available in Canada, Australia, and the United States, GasBuddy will also help you plan your fuel stops and calculate your travel cost.
If you’re on the hunt for Instagram-worthy attractions, Guides by Lonely Planet will help you find them. Along with the dreamy photos of gorgeous places near your destination, this app offers location-specific advice, information, and travel guides. Taking the kids? Get family-friendly itineraries. Thirsting for adventure? Find out where the biggest local thrills are. You can even book excursions and activities through the app.
No matter where you travel, be sure to take lots of pictures to make your friends jealous! And if you need tips to make sure those Instagram posts reach the widest audience, we’ve got you covered there, too.
Miranda Lucas is a writer based in Austin, Texas. Since graduating from the University of Michigan, she's written for numerous web-based publications. In her free time, she enjoys running, camping, and learning Spanish. Every year, she asks Santa for a second season of Firefly, but she's starting to think Santa isn't real.
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