Planning to travel to Europe? Make sure to download these apps before you go!
Whether you’re a first-time traveler or a frequent visitor, travel in Europe can be an amazing experience. But having the right apps can make your trip so much easier…and even help you save a ton of money. Knowing which ones are the best apps for traveling in Europe can be overwhelming, so here’s a list of the apps I end up using nearly every time I travel to Europe.
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Whether you’re looking to speak the language, save money on accommodations, eat like a foodie, or just be a more conscious traveler, there’s an app on this list that can help. Enjoy!
Mapping Apps for Europe
The app uses OpenStreetMap data, updated daily by its community of contributors, to help you find your way around foreign cities or rural areas without relying on Google Maps or similar applications.
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The Citymapper app has won both App Of The Year awards and Editor’s Choice awards on Apple and Android platforms. It provides an easy-to-use platform that allows users to plan their journey in advance, get real-time updates on route changes and find the best way to get to their destination. The app also tracks estimated arrival times and provides warnings of delays or congestion.
Plus, there’s the option to save favorite places so you’ll never forget where you parked or what restaurant you had dinner in. And if you’re really OK with giving them all your data and details, you can even search for places you ate at months or years in the past.
Phone & Texting Apps for Europe
But the bigger reason is that having a Google fi native phone means that I don’t have to deal with buying and using SIM cards when I go to a new country. That’s a huge pain in the ass that I get to avoid!
What makes WhatsApp so unique is its use of end-to-end encryption that ensures only authorized parties can view the content being sent. This feature provides users with a high level of security when it comes to their conversations and media exchanges, different than other providers.
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Translation& Language Apps for Europe
You can save favorite phrases and quickly switch from language to language, since the app supports 100+ languages, and that is expanding all the time.
Simply type what you want to say or copy and paste it into the iTranslate app, then select your target language. The iTranslate app will then automatically translate it for you. And if you don’t know how to pronounce something, it has an audio feature that reads out translations in different languages. Another great travel app alternative to the Google ecosphere.
Currency & Money Apps for Europe
Did you know that there are 29 different currencies used throughout the 50 European countries? Yeah, if you think you’ll be able to get by with just one conversion, you’re sadly mistaken.
I would use GlobeConvert app (below), but I run an android phone, so I use Currency Plus. I love that I can actually see multiple conversations at once, since this can help in the now, but also help me decide where to go next when I see a great conversion rate for USD!
This beautiful app allows you to quickly convert between different currencies and units of measure from all around the world since it supports over 160 different currencies.
The user interface is incredibly simple and straightforward and it’s one of the most beautiful currency converter apps available. The app also works offline, meaning that you don’t need an internet connection to access its features! With GlobeConvert’s Currency & Units app, navigating through Europe has never been simpler!
Do you use apps like Venmo to transfer money between friends or family around the US? Well, you’re likely to be out of luck with doing the same thing with money in Europe, as they seem to be overwhelmingly using the Revolut app. That alone easily makes it one of the best travel apps for Europe.
You can transfer some good ol’ USD into your account, then convert and transfer to other people in different currencies while you travel through Europe.
Budgeting Apps for Europe
This is one of the OG apps that I swore by back when I was just a baby nomad. Unfortunately, it’s only available on iOS. But if that’s you, I highly recommend checking it out. Trail Wallet helps travelers organize spending while they’re on the road while giving some fun, positive reinforcement.
Setting up categories and creating budgets is simple, and adding an item when you spend literally takes less than 10 seconds, so it’s really easy to stay on top of spending. You can even track in multiple currencies that all iron out to your home currency in your final number overviews.
The Splitwise App is one of the best travel apps out there, period. It makes organizing and splitting expenses with friends so much easier. Splitwise allows users to record expenses from multiple trips, group them together by date or destination, and split them evenly or according to individual contributions.
It even allows for different percentages of splits. You can even use it for shared bills like rent or utilities.
Transportation: Buses, Trains, & Flight Apps for Europe
You can then compare fares and journey times so you can choose the option that fits your plans. In addition to offering great prices on travel tickets, Rome2Rio also provides detailed maps of each route.
This app is great for simply getting an idea of how to get from one place to the next and any and all modes of transportation you could take. When you’re ready, you can even click through to buy the actual tickets for your chosen route!
Most buses say that they come with free Wi-Fi so you can stay connected along the way.
Travelers have access to thousands of destinations all accessible through the app. Keep reading to see how BlaBlaCar shook up the ride-sharing industry and became a great ride-sharing option for getting around major European cities.
Not only does the Omio app allow you to search for the best deals on trains in over 30 countries in Europe, but you can also book bus and flight tickets too. This means that you can easily compare prices across different modes of transport without having to open multiple apps or websites.
The Trainline app covers specifically train and bus journeys all over the United Kingdom and Europe. It features 270+ railway and bus companies for 45 countries and claims to be “Europe’s leading train and bus app.” Trainline even has a Loyalty Points system that rewards customers with points when they book trips or purchase upgrades.
Transportation: Car-Shares & Taxis Apps for Europe
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And the Free Now app also pools taxi drivers into the mix, which extends the offerings past what Uber can with only “company” drivers.
Users create profiles with their preferred destinations and add certain details about themselves that other users will see before deciding whether or not to accept them as passengers.
So it’s a great app for saving time and money in Europe while getting to know people and the culture a bit deeper. Plus, since drivers get extra money for having passengers on board, so it’s a win-win situation.
Adventure, Tours & Excursion Apps for Europe
And Get Your Guide’s platform was founded on using local guides, so your travel experience is genuine and there’s more money put back into the local economy as opposed to into big businesses that may not have local roots.
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Accommodation Apps for Europe
My personal go-to for booking great hostel options with in-depth reviews. Keep in mind that hostels aren’t just for a dorm bed in a room with others, they’re also a place for private rooms and ensuite bathrooms, etc.
The Hostelworld app allows you to filter accommodation options on these specifics so you can choose what you’re most comfortable with. So any way you look at it, Hostelworld is one of those travel apps that will save you time and money if you like to travel on a budget.
The Booking app and site offer an easy way to find and compare many kinds of accommodations, from homestays to hotels and everything in between. They have over 800,000 properties available across 35 languages, so there are a lot of options with great filtering options for your specific tastes.
Food & Restaurant Apps for Europe
The concept of the Too Good To Go app is simple: you search for nearby restaurants, purchase a discounted meal before closing time, then pick up your order using their contactless payment system. You never know what type of meal will be available; it could be anything from freshly prepared dishes or delicious bakery treats.
Not only are these meals priced lower than usual, but they also help reduce the amount of food being wasted each year – so you get a guilt-free dinner and an environmental win.
You can also filter your search by price range or type of cuisine so that you’ll know exactly what kind of food you’re getting before you choose.
Other Helpful Apps Apps for Travel in Europe
And you can do it from anywhere in Europe. While I’m a big fan of handwritten notes or postcards, I’m terrible at actually sitting down and writing them…and then getting them in the mail. I mean, simply going to a post office in another country with other languages and currencies just adds to the nausea.
Thanks to Leah Michelsen for suggesting the Austrian Post and Treecard Apps!
That alone is worth opening the app and tracking steps. But the Treecard App also encourages users to switch to green energy providers or invest in renewable energy projects when possible, allowing them to contribute even more towards reducing climate change. They even have a wooden debit card that plants a tree for every $50 spent from it.
I pop open the app, scan hundreds of events, and soon enough I’m surrounded by other locals and world travelers.
No matter where you are headed when you travel in Europe, having access to these apps will definitely make your trip easier, and potentially cheaper. Let me know in the comments if there are apps that should be added to the list and I’ll check them out!
And please share this article with your Europe travel crew!
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Travel Planning Tips
Figure out where you are going & how are you getting there…
I suggest using at least 2 to 3 different travel search sites. Start with Skyscanner or Orbitz or Booking …or whatever aggregator site you prefer. Then when you see what airlines to use, check their respective sites for better deals or rewards flights.
Figure out where you’re going to stay…
If you’re interested in hostels, search Hostelworld or Hostelling International. For longer-term or more private digs, look at Airbnb, VRBO, or you can look for hotel rooms in the links from the search engines listed above.
Get comprehensive travel insurance, or in the least, travel medical insurance if internationally…
Especially with Covid not going anywhere, get covered. Start with an insurance aggregator like Insure My Trip, or with SafetyWing, World Nomads, or another. Then decide what is important to you; trip cancellation, baggage coverage, medical, or all of the above. And get a yearly evacuation plan, since you’ll have to get home after your emergency!
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