About a week ago, my sister suggested I start doing a Friday 5ive: a top five list of my recommendations. When we had the conversation, I told her I loved the idea and I had the perfect article for it! All week, I have rested, well assured my article was already written. Today, I go to pull up the article and would you know, I had not finished it!
It’s been about 30 minutes and I think the shock and disappointment are pretty much done. So, I have decided to create a spur of the moment Friday 5ive: My Top Five Travel Apps! This shouldn’t be too hard given that I travel a lot and they are my top five. Right? Let’s go!
- Trip Advisor: If TA says don’t go there, you bet your fanny I am not going anywhere near it. I run all my lodging past Trip Advisor before I book it. I will probably take TA’s side before I trust a first-hand opinion. Of course, there is an art to using the site. Quantity – I like it when the place being reviewed has lots of reviews. Quality – I don’t believe a review that just says “They suck” or “They are awesome”, there has to be some substance behind the review. Comparison – I compare the best and the worst. Some people are extremely picky and others are too easy to please. I try to find the middle ground.
- Priceline: I have been using Priceline since college when I was determined to spend all my free time in London. My favourite thing about Priceline is the “name your own price” feature. When I started using it, as long as you were not too crazy with your bid, you were almost guaranteed acceptance. These days, there seems to be a cap which is not so fun. Nonetheless, for flights, it’s great if you have the flexibility and sense of adventure and it is always great for car rentals.
- Costco Travel: If you have a Costco card, there is a hidden gem therein in the form of Costco Travel. I have only used this for car rentals but have gotten incredible deals. 3 days +full-size vehicle + an upgrade = $27. Can you beat that?!?!
- Hostel World: Hostels are the best! Cheap, free breakfast, instant friends, party atmosphere, if you so choose. What isn’t there to like? The cheapest hostel I have ever found was for $6 in Cuzco, Peru. The bed was comfortable, the bathroom not so much. While Hostel World has tons of reviews, I will still try and verify them on TA as well when I can. If not, I treat their reviews like I do with TA: quantity, quality, and comparison.
- Booking.com… Booking.Yeah!: Number one reason why I love Booking.com? Free cancellation! They have more options for free cancellation than any other site I know. And with my spontaneous travel schedule, they give me a safety net in case something cheaper does not come along.
So there you have it. My non-exhaustive, very spontaneous list of my Top Five Travel apps. So I now realise that Costco Travel is not an app, but it deserves to be up there, so it stays. My list, my rules! What are your favourite apps?