First aid kit? Check. Smartphone charger? Check. Quart-size bag of liquids? Check.
If you’re like us, you put a lot of thought into preparing for your trip. Loading your phone with a few key apps can ensure you have all the tools you need to get the most out of your vacation.
Here are five free apps we wouldn’t consider traveling without:
1. Mobile banking
If there’s one thing you need when you’re traveling, it’s access to your money. With the OCCU mobile banking app, you can keep a finger on your financial pulse no matter where you are. Check your balance, transfer funds, find an ATM on the fly and set spending alerts to avoid going over budget on your trip. Just make sure you never log in while you’re connected to public Wi-Fi, as that can leave your sensitive info vulnerable to hackers.
2. Airline app
Downloading your airline’s app makes it easy to keep track of all your flight details. You can check in for your flight, monitor flight status updates, change your seat assignment, track your baggage and use your phone as a boarding pass. Some airline apps are better than others, but they’re almost always helpful.
Never go digging through your inbox for a confirmation email again. TripIt serves as the organizational hub for your trip. It links to your email account and collates all of your confirmation numbers in one place, including your flight, hotel and dinner reservations. It also offers helpful info like maps, directions and weather updates.
4. Uber or Lyft
Whether you’re Team Uber or Team Lyft, a ridesharing app can take a lot of the stress and expense out of traveling. It’s incredibly simple to use, usually cheaper than a taxi and you make all your payments through the app so you don’t have to worry about carrying cash.
5. Google Translate
If you’re traveling abroad, this app can help you overcome the language barrier. Just type the text into your phone and Google can translate it into more than 100 languages. Depending on the language, you may even be able to use the app without a data connection — or translate text simply by pointing your camera at a sign or menu.
Just like packing your suitcase, preloading your phone with budget-friendly apps is an important part of your travel prep. With these tools at your fingertips, you can spend less time and money on logistics and more on immersing yourself in a new experience.