The Best Apps For Backpacking

Its 2017 and we can basically do everything we need to through our smartphones. 
Probably with the exception of showering and using the bathroom but theres probably an app in development for that already. iShower coming to the app store 2020. 
I'm claiming copyright on that right now Apple you hear me! 

We no longer chat to each other because we're too busy snap chatting, instagramming, face booking or tweeting. 
BUT technology does have its perks. 
There is an app for almost anything, and this makes travelling so much easier for us backpackers.
We don't need to carry maps (this makes me sad, I prefer using physical maps to GPS), CD players (do you remember walkmans?), 10 books, calculators etc
We can just use our phones.

These are my ultimate favourite apps for when I'm travelling; everything from finding accommodation, where the best happy hours are, best ways to keep entertained to how to edit your travel photos.

You've just landed in a new country and new city and you need somewhere to stay, you might not be as organised as some *cough me* and haven't booked anywhere to stay. Thats no problem guys, just get yourself onto App. You can search from hostels, to luxury hotels in your chosen city and have the freedom to pay when you arrive. I would highly recommend booking early though if you're arriving to a big city, especially on the weekend as hostels fill up quickly. 
If you do find yourself out of hostel options, check out my 2nd best friend AirBnB - you can literally rent to stay on a sofa, share someones room, or rent a whole apartment and it might often work out cheaper than a hostel if theres a group of you! 

Wifi, what did we do before wifi eh? Talk? Play outside? Those were the days. 
Sadly wifi has taken over our life and we are obsessed with being connecting to the internet. Whether you're borrowing your friends wifi, standing outside McDonalds logging into theirs or purely basing your dinner choice on where offers free wifi. We all do it!
Whilst you're travelling wifi may not always be easy to come by, Australia especially. But I can appreciate its handy to have to be able to update family on your whereabouts, check emails etc, update Instagram, all the important things ya know! 
My favourite app to help me find wifi is = Wifi Finder

So you've found your wifi, but you can't stay standing in McDonalds all day, you need to explore your new city but don't want to use up all your data by using Google Maps. 
I present to you GPSMyCity
I have been working with these guys and I love their app.
You download your chosen city map for free so you can explore without using data, and more recently you can download articles related to that city that you can read offline. For example if you're visiting, oh I don't know, say San Francisco, and you were on GPSMyCity App, you might stumble across a REALLY USEFUL article called "USA City Reviews; San Francisco" which reviews accommodation, restaurants and all the best attractions in the city. I hear the author is pretty cool to ;) 
Using your phone aboard can be a pain in the arse, you don't want to keep topping up because its so expensive to ring home, but you also should probably tell your parents you're alive. WhatsApp my friends for those who haven't been living under a rock, is the best way to do this. Yes, it requires wifi / data to work, but you can call & text any number, any country, whenever you like. You can send photos and videos for free and create groups to keep in touch with multiple people at once. 
I have a "Home" group chat for my parents & sister and we have an agreement that I will only speak to them and keep them updated if they send me regular pictures of my cat Muffin. & it works! 

Since you're travelling, especially if you're visiting multiple countries in the same trip with all different currencies it can be a bit mind boggling as to how much money you're actually spending. A great app for this is XE Currency
Just convert how much you are spending into your home currency and you can see if what you're buying is relatively cheap or expensive. Australia is very expensive FYI so be prepared to maybe delete the app after a while when you get so angry when you realise how much you're paying for just a rum & coke. 

Speaking of rum & coke. You're running low on cash / fed up of paying extortionate prices for drinks at bars, but you don't want to stop going out and having a good time. 
Then you need  The Happiest Hour
This handy little app literally tells you when and where all the nearest happy hours are to you. 
Meaning you can have a fun night out without breaking the bank! 
& if the bank has been broken and you're in search of a job, you can even do that from your phone now too! Apps like Indeed & SEEK allow you to upload your resume to the app and automatically apply for jobs online. You can search for jobs & apply within minutes. 
Another handy app is GumTree, whether it be for jobs, free junk or finding a pet cat. 
Now, you've come all this way to *insert wherever you are* and you're got some pretty f'ing cool photos to upload and make everyone jealous with. Its all about the likes remember ;) 
Well, my favourite apps to use to edit, alter and upload my photos are: VSCO for adding a cheeky subtle filter, Square Ready to get that perfect square fit & of course ready to upload to Instagram. I am all about Instagram, I use it to stalk people, search for new places to visit, & inspiration, and of course to show off my travel photos. 
I must admit, I've been a little lost of late without Instagram. You see I broke my iPhone so I am currently using a Telstra-made phone which only has enough storage for one app at a time. 
What is life right
So I can only apologise in advance when I do finally get my phone fixed / replaced and I am back Instawhore'ing because more than likely I will have 2 months of travel photos ready to bombard you with. #sorrynotsorry 
Whats my Instagram you ask? @gemwills  

Now as well as showcasing my favourite travel photos, I am partial to creating the odd GoPro travel video. I like to film my travels and then make small videos of certain places, you may have seen a few in my previous blog posts. 
I used to create my videos on iMovie on my iPad (before it got stolen), but now am back to making them on GoPro Studio now I have my laptop. I upload and share all these videos on the app Vimeo which lets you upload videos for free (certain amount per week) and you can send your link to family, friends, or share on social media. 
Oh, whats my Vimeo account? Of course, its GGoesGlobal 

Now with all these photos and videos you've been taking, eventually, unless you've got the 125GB memory iPhone, you will run out of storage. 
Instead of having to delete any of your precious memories, save them to cyber space!
Thats right, get yourself a DropBox account on the app and save all your photos on there. You can then access your DropBox account from any laptop, computer, iPad, tablet, phone you log in on and have your photos to view. Handy if you ever loose or break your phone. As long as you remember to back up your photos, they will always be there! 

So you're travelling round and you decide you want to move onto somewhere else, this requires a plane. Oh my. 
Well folks, you can do this from your phone now too. 
Hop on down to Skyscanner and compare prices of flights and book one straight through the app. 
You can save your flight details and e-ticket straight to your phone and never have to print anything off again. Just sit back and relaxing knowing you've booked your journey from the comfort of your palm. 

Speaking of journeys, you may come across times during your travels that you find yourself absolutely utterly bored out of your mind. This might be during flights, long bus rides (try 36 hours people, it aint pretty!) or just walking round with nothing to do (now now, there is always something to d0) - well my suggestion to you is this people - Spotify
Again, unless you've been living under a rock, Spotify is of course a music streaming app, which you can sign up for free, or choose to pay monthly for cheeky benefits like offline streaming. 
Spotify always have offers, like upgrade to the premium service and we'll let you try it for free for a month or something. Even if you cancel after 1 month, take full advantage of that free upgrade. 
I hadn't really used Spotify before coming to Australia, I was an iTunes girl through and through. Download every song and album I wanted and made my playlists on my iTunes and put them on my phone. Only issue with that was, when I came to Australia without my laptop, I no longer had access to new music. Hence Spotify. 
You can discover new albums, artists, search playlists according to your mood or make you very own playlists. 
I am obsessed with Spotify now and make a new playlist on the daily.
 It got my through long journeys, and especially during farm work! 
Want to listen to my raging cool playlists? Sure no worries, I can be found on Spotify at "gemwills810"

In Australia I've become somewhat obsessed with staring at the stars at night, and for bloody good reason. In rural areas away from the big city lights the view of the stairs is insane! 
I remember being in a national park camping on a tour in WA and one of the guys on the tour was pointing out and naming all these different stars, constellations and planets and I was impressed so it made me want to learn more. 
Hence the downloading of .... Sky view
This app allows you to point your phone to the sky and it literally maps out the stars you are seeing, onto your phone and tells you their names, points out the planets and constellations. Its super cool! 

Well I hope you find use in downloading those apps, or if you have them already - GO YOU! 
I'd love to hear what apps you find useful when travelling, pop them in the comments section below! 

Thanks for reading & happy travels! 

♡ G

Join me on Instagram @gemwills 

& follow me on my Australia Adventure! 

Next Post Newer Post Previous Post Older Post Home

1 comment :

  1. wow, really this like apps. Useful information shared..I am very happy to read this article. Thanks for giving us nice info. Fantastic walk-through. I appreciate this post. local city guide