From finding accommodation to navigating foreign cities, there's an app for everything travel-related these days. Whether you're jetting interstate for business or backpacking across Asia, why not embrace technology on your next trip? Instead of cramming paper maps and phrasebooks into your suitcase, all you'll need is a smartphone or tablet. If you're not sure where to start, we've checked out all the latest travel apps - these are our top picks.
Airbnb is one of the biggest online marketplaces in the world. It works by connecting homeowners looking to rent out rooms with travellers in search of accommodation. From Sydney to New York to Tokyo, Airbnb listings can be found all over the world. To use this app, all you need to do is create a profile, find a place you like the look of, contact the host and make a booking. You can get in touch with the host by simply filling in the online form provided with each booking. Depending on your budget and the size of your travelling party, you can either rent an entire property or stay in rooms in an occupied residence. If you snag a bargain, Airbnb rates can often work out cheaper than paying for a hotel.
Guides by Lonely Planet
Lonely Planet's newest app is packed with handy tips and advice. Created by on-the-ground experts, it covers everything from public transport to local landmarks. To avoid spending your entire holiday looking for the right bus or getting lost while sightseeing, Guides by Lonely Planet can help you plan your itinerary down to the minute. With plenty of budget-friendly recommendations and comprehensive directions on how to get around, this app is essentially a private tour guide. To make sure you don't rack up a hefty phone bill, simply download a guide for every city you plan to visit before embarking on your trip. That way, you can access the app while you travel without using any data.
There's nothing more annoying than getting stuck in a foreign destination with no way of accessing the internet. Perfect for technology-addicted nomads, Café Wi-Fi can help you avert this modern-day tragedy. It maps out internet hotspots based on user-generated reviews, so you don't have to plan your itinerary around Starbucks locations.
Even the most security-conscious travellers can be targeted by thieves. However, did you know there are ways to keep track of your bag even when you're not around? To use Luggage Leash, you just need to pop an electronic beacon into your bag, download the app and set a perimeter. If your bag gets removed beyond this perimeter, a notification will be sent to your phone, hopefully giving you enough time to save your bag from getting stolen. Pretty nifty, right?
Once you've gotten the hang of using travel apps, you'll wonder how you ever lived without them. For more handy tips and travel advice, browse the Bags To Go blog.