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(Last Updated On: 04/11/2022)

We recently wrote a blog on Riding with kids on a train and gave you some tips for keeping your little ones entertained. Reading books, playing Uno, and listening to audiobooks is definitely a must for anyone, but there are tons of apps to download before traveling out there that we believe will not only entertain you but help you make your trip more organized and fun! From the App Store to Google Play, we’ve rounded up some of the best 23 Apps You Need To Download Before Traveling. All you need is a smartphone and sometime before your next trip.


1. For A Place To Stay: Airbnb

Whether it’s legal in the city you’re visiting or not, Airbnb is a household name. This is definitely one of the Apps you need to download before traveling. The app offers far cheaper prices, and a more authentic experience by allowing users to stay with a local, or in their home. The app also offers a feature called Trips, which offers Experiences to choose from during your stay. We are sure it won’t be long until it offers everything you need in one go, but for now, the options they offer are definitely worth downloading.

Dijon to Paris by train

Reims to Paris by train

Lille to Paris by train

London to Amsterdam by train

Apps you need to download before traveling


2. Apps You Need To Download Before Traveling For Last-Minute Hotel Room: Hotel Tonight

The reality is that sometimes your Airbnb will fall through. That is the only downside of the app. But not to worry, you can still have a plan B. Hotel Tonight is a reliable service that thrives on last-minute deals. The company partners with hotels to offer discounts on empty rooms, and you’ll be able to book one in under 10 seconds. You also get 24/7 customer service from the Hotel Tonight team, in case something goes awry.

London to Brussels by train

London to Paris by train

Linz to Salzburg by train

Tours to Paris by train

Apps you need to download before traveling


3. Apps To Download Before Traveling For Pre-booked Cheap Hotels: Hopper

Hopper is a flight and hotel app that finds you the best prices for booking. It analyzes data to track prices and predict the cheapest times to reserve rooms and book flights. According to its website, it boasts a 95% success rate in predictions on reservations up to a year in advance. Not bad! 

Salzburg to Vienna by train

Munich to Vienna by train

Graz to Vienna by train

Prague to Vienna by train

Hotel Billboard


4. Apps You Must Download Before Traveling Price Comparison: Kayak

While we’ve already got a few apps here for accommodation and travel plans, Kayak is an all-in-one app that helps compare prices between different search engines for all your travel needs. This includes hotels, flights, car rentals, and even travel packages. Take advantage of its massive amounts of comparisons to book all the travel you’ll need in one spot. 

Munich to Salzburg by train

Vienna to Salzburg by train

Graz to Salzburg by train

London to Lyon by train


5. Apps You Need To Download Before Traveling For Train Tickets: Save A Train 

If you’re traveling throughout Europe, there’s a good chance you’ll be making your way by train. Public transportation options in Europe are renowned for their cross-country links, and while flights are fast, trains are more convenient, more often, and service many more routes. In the event that you’re in the need of train tickets, download the Save A Train app to make purchasing cheap and easy.

Dusseldorf to Munich by train

Dresden to Munich by train

Nuremberg to Munich by train

Bonn to Munich by train

Apps you need to download before traveling


6. Apps To Download Before Traveling For Entertainment On The Go: Netflix

By now we all know what Netflix is. If you don’t, welcome to a whole new world! Sign up for a free trial, download all favorite shows or movies and watch them while you’re on a train, without the need for WiFi! Keep in mind that different shows are available according to what country you’re visiting, so if you’re absolutely addicted to one, make sure to download as many episodes as possible before you cross the border!

Amsterdam to London by train

Rotterdam to London by train

Paris to London by train

Brussels to London by train

netflix Entertainment


7. To Split Your Expenses With Friends: Splittr

Traveling with friends? Great! One of the easiest ways for things to get awkward is if you don’t split your travel funds correctly. Avoid conflict and use your cell phone to easily split expenses between friends. If you have a group, this is one of the apps you need to download before traveling. Splittr is specifically for people who are traveling. Enter expenses on the go, including who paid what and the app will do the rest. 

Visiting different countries with different currencies? No problem. All currencies are supported and you can mix money without having to do the currency conversion yourself.

Amsterdam to Berlin by rain

Leipzig to Berlin by train

Hanover to Berlin by train

Hamburg to Berlin by train

Apps you need to download before traveling


8. To Learn How Much To Tip: GlobeTips

While this app is only available on iOS, GlobeTips is a wonderful tool to help those confused about tipping internationally. This is especially pertinent to travelers used to tipping-based economies who struggle while abroad. Whether you’re in France or Spain, take advantage of GlobeTips to learn how much money to tip all professions. 

Nuremberg to Stuttgart by train

Munich to Stuttgart by train

Frankfurt to Stuttgart by train

Heidelberg to Stuttgart by train

Apps you need to download before traveling


9. To Chill Out: Calm

If you’re a nervous traveler, one of the Apps You Need To Download Before Traveling is Calm, it is an app that will be your best friend. This handy travel tool has loads of different meditations for anxiety, self-soothing, breathing, and more. It also offers soothing sounds to help you relax. As a stressed-out traveler myself, Calm helps me keep my, well, calm on the road. 

Paris to Strasbourg by train

Luxembourg to Strasbourg by train

Nancy to Strasbourg by train

Dijon to Strasbourg by train

yoga pose


10. To Keep Your Memories: Live Trekker

Writing in a journal is old-school awesome. But anything on paper means you run the risk of losing it, especially when you’re visiting multiple countries. Another one of the apps to download before traveling is Journal your travels so you can look back on your trips on an interactive map. The app tracks you as you go, marking a red line along with a map on the exact route you take; the app also monitors your speed and altitude, making it great for adventure travelers.  Add images, video, audio, and text along the way, creating a multimedia travel diary you can share! Free, iOS and Android,

Rimini to Milan by train

Rome to Milan by train

Bologna to Milan by train

Verona to Milan by train



11. To Keep Yourself Organized: PackPoint

It’s probably just the excitement of going on an adventure, but there’s always something we forget to do or pack before a trip. Luckily technology is here to save the day again. Download PackPoint! It looks at the weather forecast for the dates and locations of your trip. It will also ask you to select activities you may participate in during your trips, such as a meeting for business, a swim at a pool, or a fancy dinner. Then it will offer up a packing list of items you should bring based on these activities. Snazzy, right?  You can also share what you have found with your friends, making their travels easier, too! so remember this important tip of Apps you need to download before traveling.

Brussels to Amsterdam by train

Hamburg to Amsterdam by train

Berlin to Amsterdam by train

Paris to Amsterdam by train

Apps you need to download before traveling


12. For Advice On Activities: TripAdvisor

TripAdvisor is a super app that can give you millions of reviews of just about anything, in a quick and easy way! The best part about it is that the reviews, opinions, videos, and photos are from REAL people, so you know it’s legitimate!  Try out TripAdvisor’s Near Me function to find well-reviewed places close by, but the best feature the app has to offer is the number of countries it supports — it’s just about everywhere, making it a necessary guide for every traveler. You can also ask specific travel questions in the app’s forums or add your own reviews in a similar way to help.

Cologne to Frankfurt by train

Munich to Frankfurt by train

Hanover to Frankfurt by train

Hamburg to Frankfurt by train


13. To Learn To Speak Like A Local: Duolingo

Although speaking slowly with over-exaggerated hand gestures seems fun, sometimes it can get a little tiring. Enter Duolingo. If you’re serious about getting in with the locals, download this app! 

It offers beginner-level courses, but it’s also a great tool for those looking to brush up on different languages. You can also chat with bots in select languages. This can be particularly helpful when you’re trying to learn the phrases you’re likely to use the most abroad. 

Luxembourg to Brussels by train

Antwerp to Brussels by train

Amsterdam to Brussels by train

Paris to Brussels by train


14. To Find Out What They’re Saying: Google Translate App

While we’ve already recommended Duolingo, if you’re in a time-crunch and wanting to communicate in real-time, Google Translate is the app to use. It features voice recognition and basically every foreign language you’ll ever encounter, making this one of the best translation apps around. It’s amiable whether you’ve got an Android or iPhone, and is even usable offline.

Berlin to Dresden by train

Hanover to Dresden by train

Potsdam to Dresden by train

Nuremberg to Dresden by train



15. To Make New Friends: Meetup

If you’re the kind of traveler who likes to make new friends while traveling, look no farther. Meetup is an app dedicated to helping you meet like-minded folks all across the globe. You can form interest-based groups, and create events such as bar crawls and meals with locals. The app even has a setting for families to participate in kid-friendly activities. Nice!

Nuremberg to Prague by train

Munich to Prague by train

Berlin to Prague by train

Vienna to Prague by train


16. To Get Around When You Arrive: Uber

​Though we’ll always recommend using a train instead of a car while traveling, if you find yourself arriving late at night or heading somewhere without service you’ll need to use Uber. While not every country has Uber or its US competitor Lyft, nearly every country has a taxi app of some kind. Whether you’re in Kazakhstan or France, find your local taxi app and make sure to download it before hopping on the train. 

Munich to Zurich by train

Berlin to Zurich by train

Basel to Zurich by train

Vienna to Zurich by train

Apps you need to download before traveling


17. To Navigate Those Winding Streets: Google Maps App

Once you’ve disembarked and found yourself wandering the streets looking for the best baguette, you’ll need Google Maps to get around. Why? Because Google Maps is one of the world’s best navigation apps. From walking directions to train schedules, Google has you covered. Even better, you can download maps for use offline, which means in areas with spotty WiFi you can still find that hidden bistro down an alley. 

To download maps, simply head to Google Maps on your smartphone and navigate to the map you’d like to use. Once it’s centered on your desired locations, type in “OK maps” into the search bar. Google will begin to download the offline maps to your phone for you to use at any time. That’s it!

La Rochelle to Nantes by train

Toulouse to La Rochelle by train

Bordeaux to La Rochelle by train

Paris to La Rochelle by train

navigation apps


18. Apps To Download To Track Your Travel: TripIt

TripIt is a travel tracking app that helps organize all your travel information in one place. From flight bookings to hotel reservations, TripIt organizes everything into an easy-to-read itinerary that keeps you on track. Either link your accounts directly to the app, or forward all your confirmation emails, and TripIt will do the rest. Available on desktop, Android, or Apple iPhone, you’ll be able to use it anywhere in the world. 

Genoa to Venice by train

Turin to Venice by train

Parma to Venice by train

La Spezia to Venice by train


19. To Know Your Currency Exchange Rate: Currency App by Save A Train

While this one may be a little more niche, there are plenty of times I’ve been on the road without data or WiFi and have been desperate to know the exchange rate. Whether it’s a shady taxi driver or a tour that demands you pay in cash, having an app on hand to act like a currency converter can be a godsend. Save A Train Currency app works on or offline so it’s always available when you need it.

Basel to Interlaken by train

Bern to Interlaken by train

Lucerne to Interlaken by train

Zurich to Interlaken by train

american 100 bill dollar


20. For Everything: WhatsApp

If you don’t already have this app on your phone, get it. While North America has largely missed the data-based mobile app, WhatsApp is used worldwide for messaging, video calls, and voice calls. Its popularity is such that most businesses overseas operate with a WhatsApp number in addition to or even in lieu of a standard phone number. Trust us when we say you’ll need to download WhatsApp. 

Florence to Arezzo by train

Perugia to Arezzo by train

Bologna to Arezzo by train

Siena to Arezzo Train

Apps you need to download before traveling


21. Apps You Need To Download Before Traveling For Your Flights: LoungeBuddy

While it’s not always the best idea to fly, especially within Europe, sometimes you’ll need to catch a flight to head where trains can’t go. If you do end up in the airport, do yourself a favor and download LoungeBuddy, a handy travel app that allows you to purchase discounted access to airport lounges. This is especially helpful on those long layovers, as airport lounges offer free food and drinks. More importantly, they act as a refuge from the hustle and bustle often found in airport terminals so your next layover will be more enjoyable.

Berlin to Aachen by train

Frankfurt to Cologne by train

Dresden to Cologne by train

Aachen to Cologne by train


22. For North Americans In Europe: Metric Conversion App

While others like to laugh at North Americans and their peculiar adherence to the imperial system of measurement, it can create a serious cause for concern when they head overseas. How fast are ninety kilometers an hour? How much does a kilogram of pasta weigh? Have all these questions answered without looking silly by downloading the Metric Conversion app to your phone before you begin your travel or using the Save A Train equivalent app available at our apps section of Save A Train Blog.

Berlin to Rothenburg Ob Der Tauber by train

Stuttgart to Rothenburg Ob Der Tauber by train

Munich to Rothenburg Ob Der Tauber by train

Frankfurt to Rothenburg Ob Der Tauber by train


23. To Enter The US: Mobile Passport App

The only official government app on this list, Mobile Passport is offered by US Customs and Border Protection to help travelers enter the US with ease. Download it before you arrive in the United States and use it to fill out your information on your cell phone. Then, submit your form once you touch down and skip the massive line for immigration kiosks in the US. It’s free and easy to use!

Bremen to Nuremberg by train

Leipzig to Nuremberg by train

Hanover to Nuremberg by train

Hamburg to Nuremberg by train

That’s our list of best apps to download before traveling, whether it’s on a long train trip or just a local ride. If you need any further help with your travel plans, Save A Train offers train tickets at inexpensive rates, freeing up your budget for more fun activities when you arrive at your destination!



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