The Best Apps to Use for Planning Your Next Trip

If there’s anything I pride myself in, it’s planning for my travels and staying organized during my trips. I started traveling alone by plane when I was 13 and since then, I’ve been incredibly fortunate to go on a few trips alone each year to different cities, countries, and continents. After a few years of traveling by myself, I’ve realized the better I plan for my travels, the better I utilize the time on my trips to eat/see/do everything I want in a short amount of time. I rely on a few favorite phone apps to plan and organize my travels, and I’m so excited to share them with you in this post.

The Best Apps for Planning Your Next Trip


A great thing about each one of these phone apps is that they can all be accessed via WWW on a laptop. While I do love every one of these apps, what works for me might not be your cup of tea! Still, I do hope you give these a try and tell me what you think.
Evernote: I’ve used the Evernote app religiously over the last six years for various needs. For my travels, I use this app to list recommendations, create packing lists, and access daily travel schedules. I organize each into different notebooks and refer to them as needed during my trips. I love the option to use check boxes and how quick and easy it is to find what I’m looking for inside the app.
Excel: I never thought I’d use Excel for leisure, but now here I am recommending it to you friends! It must be the STEM-loving nerd inside of me, but I think Excel is an extremely useful and powerful tool, especially when it comes to planning your travel itinerary and travel expenses. I like using one Excel file per trip with “sheets” for my itinerary and expenses. If you’re lost on how to use Excel, but you’re still interested in learning how to use it, don’t fret! There are plenty of travel Excel spreadsheets you can download free of charge with a quick “travel Excel spreadsheet” Google search. 

Tripadvisor: When it comes to searching for things to do, places to stay, and foods to eat, Tripadvisor is my go-to website. The site makes it easy to narrow down searches by price and find top attractions in each city with plenty of reviews, pictures, and other suggested recommendations. Plus, I always get a kick out of reading witty reviews. I loved using this app for my family’s spring break trip to 30A Florida.

Yelp: After doing my initial searches with Tripadvisor, I usually follow up with Yelp to further narrow down where I should eat. I love seeing the pictures and reading the funny reviews, but many restaurants and businesses will actually also offer deals through the app. It’s worth taking a look at if you haven’t looked before.

Google Maps: After narrowing down all the places I want to visit, Google Maps has an incredible option to create your own travel maps. Since I’ve started doing this, it’s been super easy to create my travel itineraries. I organize everywhere I want to go by color (red for eat, blue for stay, yellow for shop, etc.), which makes it easy to plan your itinerary based on location and commute times between attractions. This was extremely handy for my first trip to Seattle, because many attractions were spread out and limited by public transportation times.

Airbnb: From my girlfriend getaway guide to Austin, y’all know how much I enjoy using Airbnb. It’s a great app to book unique places to stay, but another great feature is the public access to hosts’ personal recommendations for local attractions in their “Guidebooks”. Sometimes I will just browse through this option to find local favorite attractions. If you haven’t used Airbnb before, I have the opportunity to give you friends $40 for your first trip, so be sure to give it a try. I’ve made so many memories with friends by staying with Airbnb hosts – I’d love to hear about your experience if you give them a try, too.

I hope you found this post helpful! What phone apps do you swear by when planning your travels? I’d love to learn more!

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  1. 4.11.17

    All of these are great! I haven't ever used Evernote, but I hear enough good things about it that I should probably start. And seriously, WHAT did we do before Airbnb? Pay for European hotels? UGH. SO expensive. I'm crazy about using Airbnb when I'm traveling abroad! It's so easy!!

  2. 4.12.17
    Molly said:

    Such great resources! I haven't used Evernote but hear everyone gush about it. I love using Localeur for insider tips in certain cities. And Airbnb will forever be my fave!!!