Put travel at your fingertips. Planning your next getaway just got easier - and more fun - with these nine apps.
No matter what anyone—including any number of packing apps—may tell you, there are now only two things you absolutely have to remember to bring with you on any trip: your passport and your phone.
Just as I can't quite fathom what it was like to live in the world before debit cards, I have only misty memories of travel before cellphones. I have a vague recollection of crossing from Italy into France in the pre-euro days and accidentally buying a $300 Daniel Hechter beach towel because I briefly forgot the franc was worth about 25 times more than the lira. XE Currency Converter could have saved me there.
I also remember the first time I went to Italy by myself. I arrived at Milan's central station. I couldn't speak Italian, no one I could find spoke English, I got frustrated and, Eurail Pass in hand, after going across the street and having the best spaghetti carbonara of my life—which I ordered because it was the only dish whose name I recognized—hopped the next train out of there. If I'd had Google Translate, my ultimately very satisfying relationship with Italy would probably have started several years earlier. As recently as 2006, six months before the first iPhone, I was in Prague at the end of a river cruise but only got to stay a night because the transportation out had been arranged by the company. I've not managed to get back there since, and Prague's transit app could have let me make my own plans and afforded me some extra time in one of the world's great cities.
But even today, your phone's only as good as its apps and, given the enormous number of them and how many seem to do the same thing but really don't, a little field guide of sorts is in order. Some, like Instagram, Google Maps (Citymapper's getting good press and does certain things better than Google, but it only works for 30 cities) and the ones already mentioned above, fall into the category of common sense. But here are a few, some you may not have heard of and some you already have on your phone but have less than obvious travel uses that will make your trips easier and more fun.
Next: 9 apps that will help you along your way
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