Even though there’s no place quite like home, a vacation can do wonders for the soul. A change of scenery, away from the everyday stresses of life, can provide an opportunity to relax and re-energize. From beach trips with your favorite Bluetooth speaker to sightseeing excursions planned with the help of Google, arranging a vacation can be both overwhelming and exciting. The simple part is picking where to go and how long you want to stay. From there, you’ll need to determine how to get there, what to bring, where to stay, and what to do each day.


There’s no doubt that a well-planned vacation can bring a wealth of unforgettable experiences and lasting memories. Even if you’re just going away for a short period, it’s important to make sure that everything is in order before you go so that you can concentrate on having fun without worrying about things back home. So, to save you time and your sanity, we’ve put together a list of apps to help you plan and prepare for the ideal trip.

Wanderlog – Trip Planner App

Planning out every aspect of your trip is easy with Wanderlog, and you can add as many tripmates as needed. Even though the app doesn’t allow you to book flights or make reservations, you can forward the information to the app and save it for reference. A free account offers everything you need to plan the perfect trip, but you can upgrade to an annual Pro account ($49.99/year) to unlock advanced features.

The app lets you create an itinerary by adding specific locations to each day. Plus, you can add accompanying notes and checklists, which is handy for tips, reminders, and keeping track of people you want to visit. Wanderlog also helps you stay on budget and even lets you split costs, and it offers suggestions if you’re looking for somewhere new to explore.

TripIt: Travel Planner

Like Wanderlog, TripIt helps you build an itinerary, but you can safely keep all necessary information in a single place. Manually add transportation, navigation, lodging, and other notable details, and, to make things easier, you can connect and sync your Inbox to import emails or forward them to TripIt. If needed, you can invite tripmates and let them edit your trip. The app is free, but you can subscribe to Pro for $48.99 per year to access real-time alerts, notifications, and other advanced features that will come in handy if you’re a frequent flyer.

TripIt gives you a safe space to save all types of travel documents and important contacts that are accessible even when you’re offline. Additionally, in partnership with Riskline, the app includes COVID-19 travel guidelines to advise you about the requirements and restrictions for your destination. What a great way to stay informed, so there are no surprises upon arrival!


How would you like to travel and discover new places all from the comfort of your home? If you’re looking for your next dream destination or are already there and want to find nearby attractions, this app can help with both. It has made traveling and discovering new places easier than ever with a user-friendly interface. Framey also allows you to share photos from your travels for others to see and get ideas for their own future trips.

Once you find people to follow, you’ll be able to see their posts on your home feed. Here, you can like, bookmark, and comment on posts. The ability to see more information about the location, such as its hours, directions, and nearby attractions, is a very useful feature. This can help you decide if it’s a place you’d like to visit. Finally, you can use the search function to look for destinations and attractions all over the world, and you’re sure to be impressed by the stunning images you’ll find here.


Not everyone wants to stay in a hotel or with friends and family when they travel. Sometimes, you want something more affordable, has room for the entire family, and feels like home. Airbnb lets verified users rent out their space (usually a house, cabin, or condo) to travelers. You can explore Stays and Experiences based on location, date, and number of guests (including pets). Plus, many filters are available to help you narrow down your results. In addition, each listing has a photo gallery, and you can add listings to your wishlist for later reference.

While Stays are for those planning their own trips, Experiences are in-person and online activities hosted by local experts that let you learn or try something new. You can customize your budget and even book an experience for a private group. For Stays, you can learn more about the host and included amenities, read reviews from past guests, and contact the host if you have more questions. You can even become a host and rent out your personal space if you’re looking to make some extra income.

Polarsteps – Travel Planner & Tracker

This free app lets you plan your trips city by city and keeps track of every place you’ve visited with its optional “Travel Tracker” feature. Polarsteps will automatically track your routes and create a digital travel diary, giving you more time to enjoy your trip. Best of all, enabling this feature won’t kill your battery as it only uses about 4% daily.

For each trip, you’ll get a unique link that you can share with family and friends; they’ll be able to view your trip details but won’t have edit access. The digital maps are where Polarsteps shines — you can switch between Satellite and Street view. Once you’ve added all your planned stops, it will show the best routes and approximate travel time. The app also offers destination guides outlining the best places to visit, stay, and eat in a beautiful slideshow format.

AllTrails: Hike, Bike & Run

Trails aren’t just for hiking; they’re excellent for biking, running, backpacking, camping, bird-watching, fishing, and more. No matter your preference, this app will show you information and images of trails near and far. You can also use multiple filters and sorting options to find trails that suit your needs. While AllTrails is free and ad-supported, you can upgrade to AllTrails+ for $29.99/year. If you do upgrade, you can print or download maps, get alerts for wrong turns, find trails by distance from you, and view trail elevation in 3D.

The “Navigate” feature shows you a live map as you journey; it ensures you don’t get lost and keeps track of your activities in the app. You can choose a nearby route or start without one if you want to do your own thing. It also keeps track of time, distance, elevation gain, pace, and speed. As you’re journeying, you can add photos, see how many calories you’ve burned, add a waypoint, change routes, and see detailed navigation info. Lastly, you can connect with friends and other members to see and interact with their activities and discover new trails.

Tripadvisor: Plan & Book Trips

This app has a lot to offer, and it’s pretty easy to lose track of time as you discover new places locally or around the world and read helpful reviews from other users. In addition, you can plan trips alone or with a tripmate, save places you want to visit, view your saved places on a map, book hotels and experiences, view your bookings, and leave reviews for places you’ve visited. Tripadvisor is free and ad-supported; however, you can join Tripadvisor Plus for member-only pricing and perks at $99/year.

You can add notes and external links to your trips and see an overview of each city featuring a map, tons of local images, hotels, things to do, restaurants, and nearby popular destinations. Booking hotels is done on Expedia, using the in-app browser, letting you compare rates so you don’t overspend. With hotel booking and trip planning in one app, Tripadvisor gives you the best of both worlds.

MAPS.ME: Offline maps GPS Nav

Navigation is a huge part of planning a trip, and that’s where this free, ad-supported app comes to the rescue. You can look up any location and download maps for offline navigation to always have access. If needed, you can add terrain and subway layers to maps. To see additional information about a location, either tap a spot on the map or do a search, and it will show the address, coordinates, and distance away from your current location. Using the ruler feature, you can mark multiple points on a map to find the distance between them, which is excellent for planning daily activities.

You can create routes and choose which type of roads you’d like to avoid, like unpaved roads. If you’re traveling across states or countries, MAPS.ME will give you the option to download additional maps for each area so that it can create the best route for you to navigate (similar to Google Maps). Downloading multiple maps can be time-consuming but worth it to get the most out of the app. The power-saving mode is handy and can be set to off, automatic, or maximum. With automatic mode, the app will disable battery-draining features as needed.


Have you ever wondered how long the estimated wait time is at an airport, if there are any flight delays, or what items are allowed in your carry-on and checked baggage? MyTSA puts all the information you need to pack, prepare, and travel in one place. It will show you the closest airports to your current location to help you choose the best one and see important details. You can also add airports to your favorites for easy access. You’ll also find an “AskTSA” section where you can get live assistance via Messenger and Twitter.

The “Can I Bring” tab has a full breakdown of the most popular items people may want to bring with them, like alcoholic beverages, bottled water, bug repellent, deodorant, electronic toothbrushes, golf clubs, vaping devices, and much more. MyTSA lets you know if you can have the item in your carry-on and checked bags. Some items have special instructions, which you’ll see by tapping “see more details.” This is extremely helpful to ensure that none of your items have to be left behind.

PackPoint travel packing list

Packing is another essential part of traveling; you want to ensure you have everything you need and appropriate clothing for where you’re going. With this app, packing will be the least of your worries. First, you’ll need to enter a little information about your trip: when and where you’re going, the duration, and the intended activities. PackPoint will then generate a packing list based on the expected weather and chosen activities, and you can check them off the list as you pack. New items can be manually added if needed, and you can swipe to remove items you don’t need.

While PackPoint is free, you can upgrade to Premium for a one-time payment of $2.99. Upgrading removes ads and unlocks custom packing templates, custom activities, TripIt integration, and Evernote integration. PackPoint practically does all the thinking for you when it comes to packing, plus it’s incredibly user-friendly, so you can’t beat the price.

It’s the perfect time to start planning a trip

With these apps in your arsenal, there’s no need to stress out about the details of your next trip, such as lodging, packing, activities, and navigation. No longer do you have to use a travel agency to make sure your trip is well-organized and planned. Sure, they may be useful if you’re looking for professional advice and want to save even more time, but why not save some money and do the work yourself? With the travel apps available today, all the information is right at your fingertips.

What apps do you use to plan the ultimate day trip or extended getaway?

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