The Best Travel Apps for iPhone in 2018 And Beyond
Here is our round-up of the best travel apps for iPhone in 2018.
We’ve covered it all from travel planning to flight and transportation booking, hotels, home and ride shares and beyond.
Let’s dive in!
Travel Planning Apps for iPhone
The Lonely Planet Guides app let you explore 200+ cities before you go, with insider advice from Lonely Planet’s travel experts.
The apps provide neighbourhood guides, must-see sights, local language phrasebooks, offline maps, currency conversion bookmarks and more. You’re sure to find the travel destination of your dreams with a little help from the Guide app! Price: Free, with in-app purchases.
Lonely Planet/Trips – Trips is designed to be a bit like Instagram in that images feature heavily. But unlike Instagram, users can not only share breathtaking photos but also background information about the locale. Trips format allows the user to upload their travel photos, videos and stories into a glossy ‘magazine’ that they can share with friends, family and fellow travellers.
The TripAdvisor app is filled with 500 million user-generated reviews on hotels, vacation rentals, flights, restaurants and local attractions. Read reviews on landmarks, things to do in top destinations, and top nearby destinations. TripAdvisor also has a forum so you can ask specific travel related questions before you book. TripAdvisor compares prices from 200+ hotel booking sites, so you’re sure to find a great deal.
Flight Apps for iPhone
Google Flights is quickly becoming the go-to place to book flights because you can discover information about on-time performance and baggage fees that are difficult to find even on the airlines’ websites.
Here’s the problem through – Google Flights isn’t an iPhone app! But anyone can access the desktop version of Google Flights. Discover options to save money by flying out of another airport or on another date. Track airfare prices through Google Flights, and get notified via email if a cheaper fare becomes available.
Google users can save their identity and credit card details to purchase tickets without having to re-enter their information.
Hopper – The app is your crystal ball to forecast flight & hotel price reductions. Almost magically, this app can predict the future lowest price of your plane trip with 100% accuracy! Hopper tells you whether to book now or wait for a better price. If there’s a sudden drop in fares, Hopper will send you a push notification so you can book immediately.
This app features major airlines in the U.S. and Canada.
Skyscanner – This enormously popular app (60 million monthly users!) features daily flight deals from more than 1200 direct partners. But that’s only the start of what this powerful app can do. It can also find you deals on hotels and car rentals. Add your fixed travel dates, and Skyscanner will show you the best travel deals available
Skyscanner searches hotels, apartments, BBs, guest houses & hostels and ranks them by price, star rating, meal plans, cancellation policy so you can find a perfect fit for your accommodation tastes, needs and budget.
Enter your destination, pickup and dropoff dates, and Skyscanner will compare car rental rates from Europcar, Enterprise, Budget, Alamo, Hertz & Avis.
Honourable Mention Flight Apps for iPhone
HelloGbye – Hate typing? Frequent, business or group traveller? This is the app for you! Plainly speak your travel plans to HelloGbye, and it does the rest.
Price: Free for individuals, but advanced features are subscription-based.
The app maker claims the “monthly subscription actually saves you money by reducing travel fee expenses, gives you cash back and provides a better travel booking experience.” If you’re a frequent traveller, the subscription could quickly pay for itself. A subscription waives change fees, gets you preferred hotel rates, and up to 2% cashback on hotel bookings.
Hipmunk – Hipmunk integrates with Facebook Messenger, Skype and Slack. Sign up, then open up your favourite messaging app. Ask the Hipmunk bot a travel question, and it will come back with instant travel recommendations.
Hipmunk’s flight search engine shows cabin class options head-to-head so you can compare Basic Coach to Coach to Business fares. It also finds car rental and travel package deals for you.
Kiwi – Kiwi searches for the cheapest flights possible, even if it means booking you on different carriers. The company claims that “airline flights cost 28% less with Kiwi.com – saving you up to 90% on direct prices.”
Be aware that you might have to go through customs and check in again during layovers if you fly with different carriers. Make sure you have a visa for any country in which you need to clear customs.
Accommodation Apps for iPhone
Hotel Apps for iPhone
Hotels.com – Tons of filtering options and thousands of hotel rooms – what’s not to love? Registered users can receive secret deals and save up to 50% off regular pricing. The app’s “Deals for Tonight” feature can score you some sweet last-minute savings on a room.
Hotel Tonight – Everyday at noon, Hotel Tonight releases fresh room deals. While you can book up to two weeks in advance, the most significant savings come from booking last-minute with Hotel Tonight. You’ll also see user reviews and helpful information to help you make the right decision on a room.
Travelocity.com – Travelocity’s mobile app gives users access to over 300k hotel rooms. If you’re feeling adventurous, use the “Top Secret Hotels” feature to score a deeply discounted rate. The only catch is you won’t know which hotel you’re booked into until your transaction is complete. Check out the user-reviews for insights into properties. If you find a cheaper rate for your room online, Travelocity will refund you the difference.
SPG: Starwood Hotels & Resorts – Access 1200 of Starwood’s award-winning hotels and resorts – including Sheraton, Four Points by Sheraton, W Hotels, Aloft Hotels, Westin Hotels & Resorts and St. Regis Hotels & Resorts. Book with a credit card or with your accumulated Starpoints.
Bonus: skip the check-in line with SPG Keyless, which lets you check in, get your room number and unlock your door with the app. 24-hour assistance is available from the SPG support team.
Roomer – Matches people who have booked non-refundable rooms they can’t use with travellers looking to score a bargain. Register to find secret deals where you can save up to 90% on last-minute travel. Sort deals by budget, hotel class, review and extras (free breakfast, etc.)
Roomer has access to luxury properties where you can score even more significant savings. Choose from all-inclusive resorts, city break, beach, romantic trips, family-friendly properties, spa retreats and more! The app also provides users with money-saving offers for solo travel.
Home Sharing Apps for iPhone
Airbnb – Airbnb leads the way with home sharing options for every taste and budget. Home Sharing has cut significantly into hotel profits. It’s not surprising that some major cities such as New York City and San Francisco have enacted legislation to curb its rapid growth.
Airbnb has listings in 191 countries, and its total number of listings have outgrown the combined total of the top five major hotels. Book short-term or long-term vacation home rentals. Message your host in the app to get directions to your rental home.
Transportation Apps for iPhone
Car Rental Apps for iPhone
CarzUP – Partners with over 25 major car rental companies in the USA, Canada and Europe. Collision insurance is available for $11/day. Bonus – you don’t need a credit card to book a car through the app.
CarRentals – This simple-to-navigate app is a car rental search engine with enhanced features. Search for vehicles from every major rental agency. View, cancel or re-send confirmation emails for any rental you’ve made through the app. Contact customer service directly through the app for questions and concerns – and get roadside assistance if needed. The app supports 28 different languages., so it’s an excellent choice when travelling abroad.
Peer-to-Peer Car Rental Apps for iPhone
Getaround – Peer-to-peer car rental available in 8 U.S. cities – San Francisco, Berkeley, Boston, Chicago, New Jersey, Oakland, Portland, Washington D.C. Choose from convertibles, exotic, luxury, snow, SUV, Tesla, truck & van to rent on an hourly or daily basis – insurance included in the rental fee.
Zipcar – Members can reserve a car from 1 hour up to 7 days. With membership, gas, insurance and up to 200 free kilometres are included per day. Membership starts at $7 month with no annual fee.
When you locate a car that is available to rent, hold your Zipcard to the car’s windshield to unlock. When you’re finished with the car, park it in its reserved spot and re-scan your Zipcard to lock it.
Ride Sharing Apps for iPhone
Uber – The world’s most popular ridesharing app provides service in many major North American cities, as well as 60 countries worldwide.
When your ride is confirmed, you’ll see an estimated cost of the trip provided. You must accept this fee before proceeding.
Lyft – Yet another popular ridesharing service. You can create both personal and business profiles which allow you to keep receipts and personal and business payment cars separate. Schedule your ride up to 7 days in advance.
Taxi Apps for iPhone
Mytaxi – This app is Europe’s favourite taxi booking app. Fare quotes are provided when your ride is booked, so you’ll avoid any unpleasant surprises. Pre-book your airport pickup at least 4 days in advance and for a guaranteed fare.
Your card information is stored, so there’s no need to fumble with cash when you reach your destination. All receipts and your ride history are stored in the app for your review.
Taxify – Operates similarly to Mytaxi but gives you the option to pay with cash instead of adding a card to the app. Supports both personal and business trips for easy record keeping.
Public Transit Apps for iPhone
Citymapper – The app is designed specifically for people who walk, cycle and use public transit. A unique feature of this app is its Smart Ride initiative. You’ll get a guaranteed seat on a Smart Ride bus at a specific time on the route you specify. Users have said that Smart Ride is the best of both worlds between catching a bus or taking a cab.
No Wifi or data? No problem. Citymapper saves your maps for offline viewing.
Transit – Helps you navigation public transit systems with real-time predictions. Get help with trip planning, navigation, service disruptions and departure and stop reminders. You’ll even be able to track your transit vehicle’s progress on a map in real time.
Service disruption? Transit sends push notifications to alert you. Transit schedules and itineraries are available offline as well. In select cities, you can locate bike share stations, pay for passes and unlock bikes through the app.
Restaurant Reservations & Review Apps for iPhone
Open Table – Make reservations at one of the 43,000 restaurants located worldwide with the Open Table App. Filter by your personal preferences by cuisine and location. Discover photos, menus and reviews to guide you to a perfect restaurant choice.
Resy – Make a reservation at one of over 1000 restaurants in over 80 U.S.cities with Resy. All restaurants have been vetted by the Resy team for quality. Booking a table with Resy is as simple as making two taps on your phone. If you need to cancel your reservation, you can do it from inside the app.
Nowait – Many casual dining restaurants don’t take reservations, but put you on a waiting list for a table instead. That can be frustrating when you have hungry kids to feed. Nowait displays how long waits are at close-by casual dining establishments. Skip standing in line to get a table – the app puts you on a waiting list. You’ll be notified when it’s time to leave for the restaurant.
Allset – Allset is aimed at business diners. Select a restaurant, pre-pay and order your meal and pick the time you want to dine. When you show up at the restaurant, your meal is already waiting for you.
Itinerary Apps for iPhone
Google Trips – Google has created a powerful and convenient app to help plan and organize your trips. The app will pull your bookings from Gmail and Inbox and automatically arranges them for you. Your itinerary will always be available offline – no WiFi or data needed to retrieve it.
TripIt – This convenient app keeps all of your travel plans as close by as a single tap on your phone. If you’re a Gmail, Yahoo or Outlook user, booking confirmations are automatically forwarded to the app. Not a user of any of these email services? Forward your hotel, car rental and restaurant reservations to firstname.lastname@example.org. TripIt downloads all your reservations to the app to keep you organized.
TripCase– Geared towards the business traveller. Auto-import trip details, email your booking confirmations to TripCase or add your details manually to create your itinerary. Share your itinerary with family or friends – TripCase will keep them updated on your arrival details. Search alternative flights, check the weather, book rides and more all from within the app.
WiFi Calling Apps for iPhone
WhatsApp – Free calling, video calling and secure messaging from your Android, iPhone, Windows phone or Mac or Windows PC. Start a group chat to update friends and family on your travels – share messages, photos and videos with up to 256 at one time!
WhatsApp features end-to-end encryption for private calls and chats.
Messenger – Send text messages via the app to any phone number. Create group chats; voice call over WiFi.
Skype – Skype-to-Skype features free voice, video calls and instant messages over WiFi. Need to call landlines or send SMS to mobile devices? Skype has a low-cost plan available.
The fully-encrypted Signal App makes sure your conversations stay private. Use your existing phone number and address book with Signal – there’s no need to create usernames or passwords. Text, talk or create group chats in complete privacy.
Passport Apps for iPhone
Mobile Passport – Officially authorized by U.S. Customs and Border Protection. Citizens and Canadian visitors (with B1 or B2 visa status) no longer need to fill out paper declaration forms at specific U.S. airports. This app submits passport information and customs declarations on behalf of users.
Special pre-approval or clearance to use the app is not required.
Packing Apps for iPhone
PackPoint – Not sure what to pack for your trip? Pack Point checks the weather and decides what you need based on your destination, length of travel and planned activities.
Get reminders to pack essentials like passports, power adapters, medical insurance cards, and toiletry items, too.
Translation Apps for iPhone
TripLingo – Instantly translates your voice into another language (and vice versa). The included phrasebook provides formal, casual and slang options, plus learning tools to help you master critical phrases, safety tools, tip calculator, culture notes and more.
Waygo uses image recognition to translate signs and menus from Japanese, Chinese and Korean to English.
Google Translate – the world’s most popular translation app supports over 103 languages. Use your camera to instantly translate text into 38 languages. Copy text into your app for instant translation. Enter into Conversation Mode for two-way speech translation in 32 languages. Save translations in the app for future use. The app works without a data connection.
iTranslate Voice – Speak into your phone, and iTranslate will instantly translate your voice into one of the 42 languages supported – no typing required. Send translations over email, SMS or Facebook. The Phrasebook feature allows you to store frequently used phrases and sync them via iCloud for instant retrieval.
Currency Conversion Apps for iPhone
XE Currency is one of the best currency conversion apps on the market. Set your base currency and the app will pin it to the top of your screen. The app will work offline too, as rates are stored as they are updated. Calculate prices in your local currency with ease.
What Are Your Best Travel Apps for iPhone?
Pheww….that was a lot of writing – hope you enjoyed this round-up of best travel apps for iPhone. I’m sure that I missed a few great apps. Got a favourite? Add it in the comments below!
About the Author
NormaR is our WeBananas tech blogger. She came to us as a crusty copywriter from the Far North who lives and breathes conversions. In her spare time, she's a diehard Edmonton Oilers fan (sadly), a foodie and a passionate landscape photographer.