Top 10 Free Travel Apps of 2019

There’s an app for that – Check out our top picks for the best travel apps.

Hopper

Not your standard booking app, Hopper predicts prices and helps you book your flight at the right time for the right price. Select your desired airport then pick flight dates with the help of a price indicative calendar. Set up notifications and receive periodic updates on whether you should buy now or wait. If you are traveling to The Colony, for example, you can set up multiple searches to include nearby airports. DAL (Dallas-Love Field) and DFW (Dallas-Fort Worth) International Airport, are both conveniently located less than 25 miles from the city.

TripIt

All of you travel plans right at your fingertips, on or offline. TripIt organizes travel itineraries, syncs with your preferred calendar, and stores travel documents in one app. You can edit or add items to your itinerary, and even share it with travel companions or family back home. For those who travel regularly, a subscription service is available; which includes access to real-time flight alerts, alternative flight locator, fare refund notifications, reward program tracking, and exclusive travel benefits.

Similarly, Google Trips provides itinerary services for Gmail users, automatically pulling booking information from your email account. The app also offers suggestions of what to see and do once you arrive.

PackPoint

Once you have booked your flight and planned your excursions, you will have to pack. The ingenious app, PackPoint, creates a custom packing list based on your destination. Input your desired location, date of travel, length of stay, and trip activities to generate a comprehensive list of clothing and essentials. While this is a free app, a premium version is available which allows you to add customize activities. Playing a round or two at award-winning golf courses? Or hitting the town to catch live music? Simply add them to your activities list. PackPoint premium also allows integration with TripIt, creating packing lists for your upcoming itineraries.

Mobile Passport

Traveling internationally can be time-consuming, regardless of the time spent in the air. Breeze through U.S. Customs and Border Protection at 25 airports nationwide, including DFW, with Mobile Passport. Simply set up a profile, either for just yourself or accompanying family members, and answer questions regarding your trip. Submit these documents when you are ready to enter the US and you will receive a barcode to be scanned by a CBP officer in the designated Mobile Passport Control line. Skip the pen and paper method and re-use your account for future trips. Mobile Passport is secure and authorized by U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

Before you travel outside the US, be sure to check out XE Currency, a simple to use and rapidly updating currency converter; and Google Translate, a go-to for communicating abroad.

Gogo Entertainment

Many airlines are opting to forgo the in-seat screen for the one in your pocket. Keep yourself entertained on your next flight and download Gogo Entertainment on your mobile device. American, United, Delta, and Alaska Airlines all utilize the app for streaming the latest movies and TV shows in the sky. Be sure to download the app before traveling to ensure you will be entertained all flight long.

Gas Buddy

Taking a trip cross country? Keep costs down on your next road trip with this helpful app. Gas Buddy is truly your best friend when it comes to filling up your tank. Search for nearby gas stations by location, price, or preferred brands. Before you hit the road, you can utilize their Trip Cost Calculator to estimate expenses. The app also features a new card program for $0.05 off every gallon of gas.

Hotel Rewards

Finding “cheap” rates through discount booking sites takes time, not to mention that some prices may be identical from one site to another. Instead, book directly. Brands like Marriott, Hilton, IHG, Hyatt, Wyndham, Choice Hotels want to reward those who book through their site (or app). Many times hotels offer a more competitive rate or are willing to match a third party’s price. Most hotels price matching policies sweeten the deal with additional discounts, gift cards, free room nights, or bonus reward points. Be sure to sign up for a hotel’s reward program to rake in all the deals from free nights and specials to exclusive entertainment and complimentary gifts.

Find an affiliated hotel and rack up points during your next stay in The Colony.
Marriott: Courtyard, Fairfield Inn & Suites, Residence Inn
Hilton: Hampton Inn & Suites, Homewood Suites, Tru – coming soon
IHG: Staybridge Suites, Holiday Inn
Hyatt: Hyatt Place
Wyndham: La Quinta
Choice Hotels: Comfort Suites

Ridesharing Apps

These essential apps are likely already installed on your phone. With inexpensive rates and fast booking, ridesharing is an excellent alternative to traditional in-town travel. Uber and Lyft are the most common rideshare apps servicing cities nationwide (and abroad). Both are handy to download, especially in “prime times” when prices can surge higher on one app than the other. Both apps offer an online price estimate tool to help you budget your travel expenses.

Local ridesharing and taxi apps may also be available. Bubbl boasts the safest rides in the Dallas area by hiring off-duty or retired first responders. This prescheduled ride service is great for airport pick-up/drop-off and planned outings.

Splitwise

A tank of gas. Concert tickets. A hotel stay. Traveling with friends typically means splitting costs and keeping track of receipts. Simplify the process with Splitwise. The app can automatically split the bill between multiple users, keeping track of who owes what. Unlike traditional apps where you pay the individual charges, Splitwise adds up charges into a lump sum. You can even set up a group with your travel buddies then pay your bill at the end of the trip.

Local Advice

Sometimes the best way to travel is through the advice of locals. Many cities have created their own app to digitize this experience. Find itineraries based on your interest, discover local eateries, and even navigate around town. Visit The Colony app allows you to plan your stay and never miss a stop with an interactive map to guide the way.