I HAVE BECOME QUITE DEPENDANT ON TRAVEL APPS.
It has been ages since I have travelled anywhere without turning to several of my favourite travel apps for advice or help for one thing or another. Far be it from me to try to convince anyone that I am tech savvy or anything even closely resembling a beard wearing hipster. Sure, I may be typing on a MacBook Pro. I might be staring down my second pour over and fantasizing over my next microbrew from some plaid wearing “expert’s” growler in Portland Ore. But that does not make me one of them.
I am 51 years of age. I couldn’t muster the energy to grow a beard or have my hair cut “faded” close to the skin twice weekly for all the gourmet fair trade coffee in Brooklyn.
Allow me to get to the meat on the bone. I have developed somewhat of a process when I choose a destination. I first turn to TripAdvisor. I like trip advisor for several reasons. If I am looking for the most important things to see and do, I scour TA. If I have an area in mind and a few hotels that might fit the bill, I turn to TA for honest reviews.
One mustn’t always make hotel choices by TA alone. There are several other ways to limit ones exposure to an uncomfortable night in a poorly run hotel or B&B. When I am looking for accommodation I first look for price. If I wish to travel often on my own I have to try to do it in a somewhat frugal yet never stingy way. My go-to best price Apps are Hotwire, Hotels.com, Priceline, Hotel Tonight, and often times AirBnB.
As many folks well know, Hotwire and Priceline require a gamblers spirit. You commit to a limit and both will tell you where you will be saying without very little other input from you. I have come to really like Hotels.com. I have stayed in several gems as a result on a very economical budget. AirBnB is also fantastic. Our last trip to Paris was an outstanding affair as a result of a small but clean and well situated apartment in the 18th.
When it comes to travel I turn to Skiplagged for international flights. As I typically start my journeys on the west coast of Canada I find Skiplagged to be the best at hunting high and low for great prices. I also head over to Chris Marden’s site at YVRdeals.com Chris has some epic deals. I also use the regular sites at Air Canada, British Airways and as a last ditch try, AirTransat.com.
Once I reach a hub airport city such as London, Amsterdam, or Paris I turn to Easyjet, Jet2, or Ryanair. All have good apps. I prefer Easyjet, but thats not to mean it s the best of the bunch in the air. All that said they are my favourite. When it comes to european travel I always look to use my time to expand my horizon’s and mind. With that I try to visit as many museums, galleries and important landmarks as possible. As most of you are already aware when you arrive at these locations you pay your admission fee and at that time you are offered an audio tour at extra expense. I turn to Rick Steves. Rick has downloadable podcast tours for nearly all the major important sites. They are free and excellent.
These are just a year few of my favourites. I use them to prepare for every trip. As long as I am prepared I am satisfied. I tend to remain away from technology during a day of travel. I enjoy talking to and learning from the locals and other visitors. Its easy to strike up conversations if you remain humble and well mannered. If you have other favourites that I haven’t mentioned please send me a note in the comments section.
Cheers and Walk Across It All.