Travel tips and travel guide apps are flooding the travel market, and many influential and experienced travel sites regularly recommend what we travelers should use. An article featured on ReadWrite (6 Travel Guide Apps To Help Plan Your Next Trip) offered one such article last year, and there are some pretty good suggestions. Here’s my take on two that I have used.
TripAdvisor Offline City Guides
I utilized this app on my trip to Rome in 2012, and I found it quite useful. My primary focus was the map, which allowed me to see the streets of Rome when walking to all parts of the city. I had already done my research with the TripAdvisor site in searching for restaurants, and I had had the hotel I was staying at make the reservations for me. Most hotels, including mine, provide guests with useful maps of the city, but many of the smaller side streets are not listed on these maps. This travel app ended up helping me out quite a bit since it lists all streets, even the smallest ones. So whether I had to find a restaurant or a better route to where I was going, this offline city guide did the job. But, and there’s one but, the amount of guides is limited. The only have a handful of cities. Yes, they have Rome, but they don’t have Florence, for example. So you will only be able to use this app on a limited basis.
Viator Tours & Activities
Viator, in my opinion, should be at the top of the list. Viator is a tour operator service owned by TripAdvisor. Viator provides almost every type of tour service for a variety of destinations. What’s great is that you don’t have to search for every site separately. Here’s what you do–open the site, search for your destination, then select any tours you are interested in for your vacation. They categorize them by destination, and then by interest. You register, and they then send you a confirmation with voucher, which you present to the tour director when you arrive for the tour itself. I have to say, it was very convenient. I used them for my last trip to Florence, Italy, and everything went smoothly. The tours were operated by different companies, but I was able to find everything I wanted. In fact, one tour did not have enough people for the tour to run, and the tour company contacted me by email to let me know. So yes, you do need to check your email, or at least provide your mobile number so they can call. But overall I highly recommend Viator.