You’re searching for things to do. We’ve compiled a list of 5 phone apps for finding things to do (safely) that are must-haves for traveling or just finding things to do around your home town.
Step 1: Searching for events
My favorite app for finding event tickets by location is TickPick.
Why? There are some great apps for finding things to do and finding great deals on event tickets out there. But all of the ticket sales have huge hidden fees involved. For instance, the ticket owner sells you a ticket for his seat at an NFL game through a ticket website for $100, the website shows it is only $100, but when you go to check out, it could be $116 or $125. Where are those extra bucks going? Not to the guy selling you the ticket. If you’re a fan of services that don’t charge you hidden fees, this app is great. It’s just as good at finding the seats you want at discounted prices, but there’s just no hidden fees in the checkout process.
Step 2: Booking a room for the night (if need be)
My favorite app for finding a room for the night is HotelTonight.
Why? There’s a million hotel booking websites, and I’m sure you’ve heard of most of them. They’re pretty great. But this app is kind of the Uber of hotel booking. You can book up to 30 days out from the date you need a hotel room now, but it used to just be a way to get an unsold room at a great price because you needed one tonight. You get special rates for booking rooms in the city within which you are searching for a room. It can tell you are in the city, it finds you a great rate for a hotel room there.
Step 3: Safe travels and happy eating
I mentioned Uber and I would normally put it at Step 3 here, because it is a must-have for traveling, but I suspect everyone has this app that needs it. That is, once you’ve searched the event and found a room for the night, safe transportation is a must. I’m also pretty sure you’ve heard of Yelp and Groupon for finding something to eat. Both great apps, but again, I’m sure you’ve heard of them for finding things to do safely. Instead, I have my favorite apps for traveling (a.k.a. road trips) and eating healthy here.
One of my favorite apps for traveling on the road is SitOrSquat.
Why? Similar to finding the best rates for gas along your route (which has just been incorporated into your maps app now) Charmin has created a crowdsourced app for finding clean restrooms along your trip! The name says it all. Sit or squat? You used to have to leave this to chance (or base it on the appearance of the store), but also many people only want to go places to eat or get drinks if they have clean restrooms. That’s why I think this is a must-have for safe and happy traveling that everyone might not know about.
One of my favorite apps for a healthy lifestyle in general but especially for eating out and traveling is MyFitnessPal.
Why? It’s a health monitoring app that counts your steps, tracks the calories for any food you type in or even scan, and links up with any other health data you track in your phone. It’s a fact that simply keeping track of what you eat and drink regularly helps you lose weight/maintain a healthy weight. Even if you have a good handle on this, MyFitnessPal is great for checking out how many calories something has quickly or seeing how many steps you took during a heavy day of walking during an event versus normally. I like to keep track of this kind of stuff more during traveling because I’m outside my normal routine. You may be surprised how many calories are in the basket of chips or bread that comes to your table before your meals when you eat out. You may be surprised how many steps you rack up (and how many calories you burn) going to a music festival or football game compared to a normal day.
The last app I highly recommend for traveling and eating healthy is OurGroceries.
Why? This one is great for travel but you’ll also probably use it at home. If you’re traveling somewhere like the beach, the first thing you’ll probably do is make a shopping trip for the weekend to stock the mini-fridge so you’re saving money eating out. And if you’re hosting a Super Bowl party and need to pick up burgers and fixin’s (make sure to check out my recipe for Lettuce-Wrapped Bacon Egg and Cheeseburgers), this app makes shopping lists really easy. It’s a shared grocery list app that allows you to create and share recipes, grocery lists, and other shopping lists for any store you frequent. So if you’re out, and you’ve created shopping lists for 5 stores, you can shop from the list for each of those stores depending on the place you’re going. You can cross an item off the list, and everyone who has the list can see that it’s picked up, then when you need it again, uncross it. It’s also great for, once you have a recipe you like to cook, creating ingredient shopping lists.