how to pack

10 Travel Apps That Will Make Your Life Easier

BlogHeroPicture3601.jpg

Whether you want to snare the cheapest flights, view your entire holiday itinerary with a few quick swipes, or live it up like a local at your final destination, as they say… there's an app for that.Here are ten must-have travel apps to have handy before your next holiday.

Best apps to plan and book your holiday

TripAdvisor: One of the most popular travel apps around, TripAdvisor's main selling point remains its huge collection of customer reviews – there are well over 200 million. Once you've looked over the reviews, you can get a great idea of which airlines, resorts, and attractions are best suited to your holiday needs.

Skyscanner: Allowing you to find and then compare flights from hundreds of airlines operating across the globe, Skyscanner remains a great tool for finding your next flight. Previously solely focused on flights, the app's newest version also incorporates hotel and car rental bookings.

Triposo: Triposo scans thousands of websites worldwide and then crunches all of the data into handy travel guides. Providing recommendations of where to go and what to see -  including city maps, tips and suggestions – Triposo also, handily, works offline.

Hopper: Not only can you book and plan flights with Hopper, but the app will help you find the cheapest flights. Simply search for a flight and choose when you would like to fly, and Hopper will tell you to buy now or wait. If you choose to wait, Hopper will keep an eye on the flight's price, notifying you when prices drop.

Packing Pro: Always seem to arrive on holiday missing that crucial piece of clothing? Packing Pro can help. Simply put in where you're going and how long you're going for, and out will spit a suggested list of items to pack. Divided into categories like essentials, clothes and accessories, you will never forget your raincoat again.

Best apps to have on holiday

Tripit: Just forward all of your travel confirmation emails to Tripit – your flight, hotel, car rental and activity details – and the app will sort it all out into a clear and easily accessible itinerary. It's also useful if you're travelling in a group, as you can share your itinerary with others.

Uber: Uber has taken the world by storm. The convenient ride-hailing app counters many of the problems tourists face when trying to navigate local cab services. The ability to map out your trip from start to finish is another of the app's bonuses.

XE Currency: Making sure not to blow the budget is a constant challenge, especially so when dealing with fluctuating foreign currencies. Currency website XE's app remains popular with travellers due to its easy to use interface and huge database of world currencies.

CityMapper: City Mapper is a good alternative to the ubiquitous Google Maps. With simple instructions to get you from point A to B, and the integration of real-time traffic and public transport information, CityMapper will make navigating crowded metropolises a breeze.

Google Translate: An essential app for travel to countries where English is not used, Google Translate is the best app of its type. Its coolest feature remains the incorporation of your phone's camera – simply point your camera at a street sign or menu, and you'll get the words back in English.

Club Med App: Okay, this is a sneaky one… but if you’re going on holiday with Club Med, this is a must-have! View the resort’s schedule, activities, excursions, dress code and spa menu all in one place. Too easy.

There you have it! Just make sure to have these apps on your phone to ensure your getaway is well-planned and hassle free.

Discover the Club Med App in the video below or download it here on Itunes or here on Google Play.

12 Travel Tips For Your Next Holiday

DSC6480-cop12y.jpg

While we all know there’s nothing better than being on holiday, but sometimes, getting ready to head overseas can be a little stressful! We’ve put together a list of our most important tips to get ahead on your next holiday…

1. Book your flights – early!

You’ll get the best price on your flights if you book them in advance, with savings that can often add up very quickly. Usually, you can book your trip up to 10 months out from departure – plus, if you book with accommodation you often get the best rate on flights available.

If you have your eye on flights and want to know when to buy, Hopper is the perfect tool! Plug in your travel dates and destinations, and the app will notify you whether you should buy now or wait.

2. Best time to go on holiday

CARC_D114_132.jpg

Really, it depends what you’re looking for:

  • ✔️ For those looking to escape the crowds, avoid school holiday periods, especially the Christmas break! Airports and popular destinations can get extremely busy, and prices often skyrocket during this period.

  • ✔️ To ski, head to the Northern Hemisphere in January to March for the best snow, or April for some incredible spring skiing.

  • ✔️ If you’d prefer to avoid the wet season in tropical Asia, travel to Thailand between December and April, and to Malaysia and Indonesia between May and October.

  • ✔️ Check the national holidays of the country you’re visiting before you book to make sure everything will be open. Keep an eye out for Chinese New Year, Bastille Day, Easter and other similar holidays.

 3. Planning your trip

  • ✔️ Be sure to visit TripAdvisor before choosing your accommodation or tours, to read peer reviews or have your questions answered.

  • ✔️ Google Trips is an app that will keep track of your bookings as you make them. No need to trawl through your emails! Too easy.

  • ✔️ Have a look online for any 360 videos to get the full holiday experience, or use Google Street View to get a virtual tour of the destination.

4. Check your passport!

Probably the most important point on this list! It is absolutely essential that you make sure you have at least six months on your passport before leaving the country, otherwise your dream holiday may become just that – a dream. Acquiring a passport last minute is a stressful process, and can’t always promise results, so check your validity well before you jet off!

While we’re on this topic, make sure to look up visa requirements for the country you’re heading to. Australians can travel visa-free to plenty of countries, but it’s always better to triple check.

5. Where to exchange your money

  • 💰 Exchange some money before you go. While the rates may not be as promising, the language barrier overseas may make it difficult to exchange currency.

  • 💰 Check with your bank if you can get a travel card, or go to the local post office and grab one. It’s much easier than paying by credit card, plus you don’t pay currency conversion fees.

  • 💰 Don’t exchange money at the airport, and especially not after you clear security. Kiosks at international airports have notoriously poor exchange rates.

  • 💰 Be sure to notify your bank that you’re overseas, to avoid having issues with your card. Banks like ING allow you to notify them of travel in their online banking app.

6. How to pack

Forget folding! To save as much space as possible, roll all of your clothing inside your suitcase. Also, keep your luggage as light as possible to make sure your transit is as easy as possible- if in doubt, leave it out!.

7. Learn some basic phrases

Consider learning some basic language skills of the country you’re visiting as a courtesy to those you’re speaking to. Learn phrases such as “excuse me,” “may I please have…” and “no, thank you.” If you have any serious allergies, learn to articulate these too!

Apps like Duolingo are great to give you a rundown of the basics, and Google Translate will always come in handy while overseas.

8. Ditch the camera

LIFT_SUN_K118_190.jpg

Let’s be honest: in today’s world, your smartphone is more than adequate to chronicle your travels. While your DSLR can take some incredible shots, you’ll also have to lug it around, including extra batteries for when it inevitably runs out of charge. If you want to travel light, invest in some add-ons for your smartphone to boost the quality of your images.

9. Pack some earplugs, or noise-cancelling headphones!

Whether you’re staying in a lavish resort or a hostel in the big smoke, you’ll want to bring some earplugs to safeguard your shut-eye. They’re invaluable on flights - especially if you’ve got the screaming child seated behind you! For frequent travellers, consider investing in a great pair of noise-cancelling headphones – Bose’s Quietcomfort series is a favourite amongst travellers.

10. Check if you need vaccinations before you go!

Check what vaccinations you need on Travel Doctor after you book your holiday. Some vaccines can take up to eight weeks to come into full effect, so get organised early. Plus, in many resorts like Club Med Bali, children require vaccination certificates for the Kids Clubs, so make sure you bring those along.

11. Travel insurance is essential

Travel insurance is an absolute must-have when travelling abroad, especially with children or on a ski holiday. Insurance can cover medical emergencies, travel costs incurred from some cancellations and will compensate you if your belongings go missing. Be sure to document your claim fully to make sure you get compensated.

Again, some holiday packages (including Club Med) offer travel insurance in the package – make sure to check before spending extra!

12. Travelling with kids?

ENFT_E111_030.jpg

Travelling with young children is a different game all together. Consider these tips before you jet off:

  • ✔️ Pre-order children’s meals on-board your flight.

  • ✔️ The air pressure changes inside a plane’s cabin is more intense for young children. Make sure you bring something for the little ones to suck on to alleviate the pain.

  • ✔️ Travel somewhere with a Kids Club. Not only will they have a ball, but you’ll get a break!

Discover more about Club Med all inclusive holidays by clicking here.