The 10 Best Travel Planner Apps of 2021

Find bargain flights, research activities, and pack like a pro

Planning the perfect trip can be almost overwhelming enough to take the fun out of what should be an exciting experience. Thankfully, there are many travel planning apps available to help you organize your next getaway, right down to the smallest detail. Here are 10 of the best.

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Best for Activity Suggestions: Guides by Lonely Planet

Guides by Lonely Planet
What We Like
  • Many ways to search information for each location.

What We Don't Like
  • Access is limited without a subscription.

When you have a trip coming up, download the guide for your destination and get a wealth of information about where to go and what to do. Start with the Must See section to find out the top spots. Then check out Tickets & Tours for special experiences and skip-the-line convenience. A Tools section provides transportation advice, need-to-know details, and key phrases to help you get around.

If you're looking for something specific (such as parks, gardens, or markets), scroll down to Curated Collections. If you still don't find what you want, search for coffee houses, museums, and more.

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Best for Predicting Lowest Flight and Hotel Prices: Hopper

hopper travel planning app
What We Like
  • The Watch feature sends push notifications about good deals when it's time to commit.

What We Don't Like
  • Some fairly large airlines aren't included in Hopper's analysis.

Hopper's proprietary algorithm tries to predict where flight and lodging prices are headed in the near future, letting you wait until the right moment to spring into action and book your trip at the lowest price. The app analyzes billions of prices per day and claims to predict what the cheapest one will be with a 95% accuracy rate.

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Best Overall Trip Planner: Kayak

kayak travel planning app
What We Like
  • The Explore feature helps you decide on a destination, suggesting getaways all over the globe based on your maximum budget.

What We Don't Like
  • Doesn't always show all available flights on a specific route, potentially causing you to miss out on the best deal.

One of the top all-in-one apps for setting up a trip, Kayak searches hundreds of travel sites instantly to provide multiple deals on a flight, hotel, or rental car in the same location. Kayak also organizes everything in one place and includes up-to-date details on security wait times, along with airport terminal maps.

The app also measures your luggage using your phone's camera, informing you of potential fees and carry-on rules for most airlines.

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Best for Helping You Remember the Essentials: Packing Pro

packing pro travel planning app
What We Like
  • An impressive group of sample packing lists provides a good starting point if you don't want to make your own.

What We Don't Like
  • In-app purchases are inappropriate for an app you purchased.

Packing Pro is well worth the $2.99 price if stuffing your suitcases isn't your favorite pre-trip activity. The app creates customizable packing lists that take into account important factors like the trip duration, destination, expected weather conditions, food preferences, and more. Packing Pro's robust item catalog ensures that even the most unique dietary or religious restrictions are satisfied.

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Best for Car or RV Trips: Roadtrippers

roadtrippers travel planning app
What We Like
  • The hidden gems that can be discovered with this app.

What We Don't Like
  • GPS coordination isn't as good as it is in apps like Waze.

If dealing with long lines at the airport isn't your idea of fun, then Roadtrippers may be the app for you. Whether you're hitting the highway or off-roading it, enter your starting and destination points and let Roadtrippers provide the information you need on everything in between.

From campsites and outdoor attractions to unique adventures that are off the beaten path, this app is the perfect companion for planning an excursion no matter if your mode of transportation is a small-sized rental car or a giant RV.

An optional yearly subscription unlocks advanced features, including live traffic monitoring and different map styles.

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Best for Finding Bargain Flights: Skiplagged

skiplagged travel planning app
What We Like
  • Frequent travelers can save a significant amount of money.

What We Don't Like
  • Airline baggage fee policies can be murky, so read the fine print before booking.

By showing fares to connecting cities that are sometimes cheaper than a direct flight to that city, Skiplagged lets you book flights where you simply stay at the layover location (your destination) rather than continuing with the connecting flight. When it works, you spend less to end up in your desired destination. Skiplagged also lets you book last-minute hotel deals.

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Best for Avoiding Hidden Fees: Skyscanner

skyscanner travel planning app
What We Like
  • Offers protection to ensure car rental providers don't overcharge for fuel.

What We Don't Like
  • In rare instances, flight prices shown in the app are outdated.

Skyscanner should be included when you're looking at some of the bigger all-in-one planning and booking apps. Offering reliable price alerts, integrated frequent flyer miles, and no additional or hidden fees like you might find elsewhere, Skyscanner usually follows through on its promises and is easy to navigate.

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Best Itinerary Planner: Sygic Travel

sygic travel planning app
What We Like
  • If you don't want a planned itinerary, Sygic is useful for finding nearby attractions on-the-fly.

What We Don't Like
  • Access to Sygic's offline maps requires a paid upgrade to the Premium version.

Sygic Travel lets you plan a detailed itinerary for each day of your trip before you leave home, down to the last detail, like walking distances between attractions.

With over 50 million places included, many with 360-degree videos that make you feel like you're there, the app's smart search filters help you narrow things down to the perfect daily schedule. Collaborative city guides provide an easy-to-use snapshot of the most popular locales around the globe.

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Best for Customer Reviews: TripAdvisor

tripadvisor travel planning app
What We Like
  • The forums are a great resource for getting specific travel-related questions answered quickly.

What We Don't Like
  • Default rankings don't always correlate with customer reviews, so you often need to take a deeper dive to discover the best value.

A stalwart in the travel industry, TripAdvisor isn't unique in providing a one-stop-shop for booking good deals on flights, hotels, and restaurants for your upcoming trip, though it does a dependable job of each. Where the app sets itself apart is with its customer feedback on airlines, lodging, food, and activities. By offering over 500 million opinions from real travelers who've been there and done that, TripAdvisor helps you make informed planning decisions based on others' past experiences.

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Best for Organizing Confirmations and Reservations: TripIt

tripit travel planning app
What We Like
  • Send information manually, forward confirmation emails, or have the app automatically fetch itineraries from your inbox.

What We Don't Like
  • The default notification setting is for an annoying number of alerts.

When you plan a trip, it's not uncommon to receive multiple confirmation emails and itineraries from airlines, hotels, rental car companies, or other sources. Keeping all these details organized can be a hassle.

TripIt solves this problem by taking all your scattered information and organizing it into an easy-to-use main itinerary. This basic functionality is available free of charge, while an annual subscription provides the ability to upgrade your seat on upcoming flights and track reward miles, among other perks.

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