Friday, 23 September 2016

Which is the best travel planning app?

Tripit 1I’ve been using TripIt now for a couple of years and wouldn’t go anywhere without it.  TripIt keeps all your travel plans in one place and links to maps and directions.  Add in all of your reservations (travel details, confirmation numbers, restaurant and hotel bookings) – note, I said add in – because for the most part you need to do it manually, and your entire trip is at hand wherever you are.  I’ve found it invaluable.

The beauty of TripIt is that you can set up trips, then view and update on your PC or smartphone.  This is an application that syncs with all devices. You can also sync TripIt with your calendar.

Google Trips 2The brand new Google Trips is an app which you can download for IOS or Android devices.  It’s as much a travel guide as a trip planner, and one of the main benefits is that provided you’ve downloaded your plans and destinations over wifi beforehand you can use it offline. 

Google Trips can only upload your plans automatically from Gmail, so if you use another email provider they won’t appear unless you forward your reservations to your Gmail account. 

There are plans for more than 200 major cities, divided into sections including the following: Food and Drink, Where to Go, Things to Do, Saved Places, Day Plans and Getting Around.  In particular Getting Around is extremely comprehensive giving you all the transport options wherever you are.

Day Plans is customizable depending on what you want to do, it will also have built up a picture of what Google thinks you might like to do.  Choose as you will and recognise that Google knows a great deal about you from what you’ve done and where you’ve been before.

As far as keeping your reservation information in one place is concerned I don’t think anything beats TripIt because you create your own trips.  It’s private unless you share it and you can access and update your plans from anywhere and on any device. 

There is also TripIt Pro which offers flight alerts, flight refunds and rewards information, but at $49 a year I’m not sure that this is worth it unless you fly a great deal.  TripIt itself is free, as is Google Trips.

I can see that Google Trips will be useful for it’s offline ability, transport information and restaurant recommendations, however for Travel planning for the moment TripIt’s the app for me……