Summer is almost here, which means it’s time to take a trip.
But before you send that “out of office” email, you have to book your flights, reserve a rental car and plan an itinerary. It can be a real headache. Here are four apps that’ll make planning your trip a little bit easier.
First up is Lola, a personal travel agent that can help you book everything from flights to hotels to rental cars. After downloading the app, you answer a few questions about your travel preferences and then start a new trip. Need a hotel? Just open the chat window, provide your travel dates and Lola’s team of experts will respond with options and even book it for you.
The suggestions they offer are free, but the app may charge fees for some transactions, like $25 for finding and booking a flight. However, that’s a small price to pay if you don’t want to spend hours putting together the perfect itinerary.
If you’d rather find and book your own travel, then Skyscanner is pretty much a one-stop shop. When it comes to flights, Skyscanner shows you the most affordable options on all major airlines — including Southwest, which you can’t find on third-party sites like Orbitz and Expedia. Skyscanner is also a great place to compare and browse for hotels and rental cars, and you can even set price drop alerts so you never miss a deal.
For a hungry traveler with a short layover, there are few apps better than Grab. This genius invention lets you pick a restaurant at the airport, look at the entire menu, and then order food from your phone. You pay through the app, so once you get to the terminal, you just grab your grub and go! Grab is currently available at 17 major US airports, including LAX and Dallas Fort Worth.
It’s easy to miss out on hidden gems when you’re new to a city. Don’t let this happen to you. Localeur is a handy app that helps visitors avoid tourist traps and discover local hotspots. Looking for the best places eat, drink, and hang out? Open Localeur, which features recommendations from people who actually live there. You can access the app in 40 cities, including New York, San Francisco, and Austin, and each suggestion comes with a blurb from a local explaining why they love it. So skip the McDonald’s, and try something new on your next vacation.
Brittany is a writer at Yahoo Finance.