The Best Travel Apps in India – Guaranteed to make your travel planning pleasant!

We are sure most of us will agree that planning a travel is as exciting as the travel itself. Today we’re going to share some of our most favourite travel apps that always find space in our smartphones. These travel apps definitely make planning our trips pleasant if not anything else!

1.  MakeMyTrip

Makemytrip certainly tops the list of our favourite travel websites. What we like about it the most is that it is the most professional in the business in the Indian scene. Be it the flawless app design, booking ease, impeccable customer care or the amazing discounts, it is truly top-notch.

The good:

·         Cheapest flight prices on most occassions
·         A gamut of credit card and debit card offers
·         True blue discounts on App during the "AppHours" , "Trippy Tuesday" and such other offers
·         Their tour packages are a brilliant reference for the ones trying to design their trip itinerary
·         A quick IRCTC train ticket availability check without having to login to the official website
·         Has tie up with "Payback" rewards mmerchant and these reward points are redeemable as actual discounts in future bookings

The Not-so-good

·         Travel package rates are on the higher side
·         Hotel prices  are many a times higher than, let's say, GoIbibo

2.  Goibibo

For us, GoIbibo is a clear leader for hotel booking. It isn't far behind makemytrip in flight booking too.  We particularly love their wallet offering called GoCash and GoCash+. They guarantee saving a few bucks if used rightly. As of now they don't offer tour packages and we are glad they are just focussing on their strength - Hotels!

The good:

·         Cheapest hotel prices nine out of ten times
·         Wallet GoCash and GoCash+ can be earned by a variety of ways, for e.g. you earn 50 GoCash when a friends books using GoIbibo
·         "GoStays" - GoIbibo certified hotels is a great initiative which facilitates booking cheap, basic and reliable hotels

The Not-so-good:

·        The biggest drawback is that it weirdly compromises your privacy. If someone in our contact books and travels using GoIbibo, we get Rs.50 GoCash. Great! But at the same time it mentions the name of the friend who booked through GoIbibo. This actually sounds ridiculous!
·         The reviews aand ratings are unreliable and hence it is always advisable to check with third parties like TripAdvisor!
·         Refunds are a bit complicated specifically if you’ve used Gocash or Gocash+ during booking. We’ve experienced some deducations in refund. Also, restrictions on use of GoCash mean that you'll have them plenty but would not be able to use them!

3.  TripAdvisor

It is undoubtedly the best reference site for travel going by the sheer number of independent reviews for almost all tourist spots in the whole of the gigantic globe! We aren't a big fan of their travel booking tie-ups though. Albeit we definitely love the guest photos and reviews of hotels, attractions etc.

The Good:

·         Huge database. Huge footfall. Huge number of reviews and photos
·         Their tie up with certain airlines where you get AirMiles for writing reviews. yey!
·         Offline maps in their mobile app are a boon
·         A single point reference for any trip anywhere in the world. Period.

The Not-so-good:

·         We only wish their partner prices were competitive enough like makemytrip or GoIbibo!
·         Their app version consumes huge memory space in phome nd we dont know why!
·         Sometimes too many conflicting reviews for a particular place/hotel makes it difficult to take a decision!

4.  Skyscanner Flight

Although not an Indian site it is a great website for searching cheap international flight prices. Nothing more, nothing less.

The Good:

·         Their feature of "price trends" for a particular flight shows prices over a period of time helping us plan our travel when prices are cheapest
·         View prices in any currency
·         Great filter/flexibility options like filter by flight carrier, filter by number of stops as well as the "My dates are not fixed" option

The Not-so-good:

·         Sometimes prices shown are not available when you actually go ahead to book them.
·         Not much offerings apart from aggregating flight agents from across the globe

5.  Zomato

Travel without great food is incomplete. This site is for the foodies! If one is not sure where to find your next great meal, this app is honestly helpful.

The Good:

·         One can read entire menus of restaurants right from home
·         Expert and user reviews to give us a fair idea of a restaurant
·         Fair ooptions to filter and find the food of our choice and in the vicinity
·         Timings, prices, amenities and payment options are quite helpful in shortlisting that great meal

The Not-so-Good:

·         Off late one needs to sign in to the app to explore its features which is a let down
·         The app only covers metros and bug cities/towns as of now

6.  Redbus

It is perhaps the best bus booking app in India. It definitely makes booking buses butter smooth. We can't particularly point out it's positives and negatives. How about leaving your views in the comments?

7.  Splitwise

Splitwise is an app which might give you a great relief if travelling in groups of friends wherein expenses are shared.
You simply input all the expenses and define how it is to be split. That's it! One, it helps you maintain a nice log of expenses and two, it eases splitting shared expenses..
Some great features include:
·         You can form groups and add your friends via email ids and if they too download the app then they get push notification for each expense entered in the group. Helps a great deal in maintaining transparency.
·         Lots of flexibility like "squaring off" , defining the proportion of split , choosing the number of members in the group relating to a particular expense etc
·         Thanks to Splitwise, we now have a database of all expenses made in most of our previous trips. Makes great memories indeed!

So that sums up most of our travel apps and definitely all our favourites!

Some of our Desi Travel Hacks and more:

·         There are quite a few other apps too that we have found to be reliable enough and do their job well. These include Cleartrip , Yatra , ixigo . But almost always the prices offered at makemytrip and/or GoIbibo win hands down!
·         Many a times during hotel booking payment in advance makes us eligible for great discounts instead of Pay-at-Hotel.
·         To us it never made much sense trying aggregators like trivago. More so because of some discount forms like GoCash and promo codes are not deciphered by these aggregators.
·         Paying by reward based credit cards helps in accumulating good amount of points redeemable later
·         Making individual hotel bookings for each day of your trip cleverly helps in higher effective discount. For e.g. offer says get 20% discount with a cap of Rs.1000. Now if you're booking a hotel costing Rs 5000/day and are booking for 3 consecutive days then a single booking fetches a discount if only Rs.1000 and three separate bookings fetch a discount of Rs.1000x3 which is THREE TIMES HIGHER!! Caution: It is always advisable to confirm with the hotel so that you are not subject to multiple check-ins and check-outs!
·         We always use hotels names mentioned in reputed tour packages as a reference. This way we get to know the better hotels to stay in at a particular place and also can cross-check prices separately from a third website.

That's it folks! If you liked reading our views please feel free to comment/ share/ subscribe. It gives us a smile. Thank you. Cheers!

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