There are as many travel apps out there as there are tourists hitting the beach this summer, but each one provides ideas and recommendations for where to go, what to eat, and what to do in different ways.
The standard practice of collecting customer reviews, like on TripAdvisor and Yelp, is well known, but a new wave of apps are attempting to better curate the best travel destinations and personalize the recommendations for each traveler’s taste.
These five apps aim to help every traveler who has felt overwhelmed sorting through thousands of reviews. Try them out on your next adventure:
Gogobot recently launched a complete redesign, making the app more visual and easy to use for trip planning and organization. Recommendations include lodging, dining and entertainment.
Gogobot groups travelers by “Tribes” in order to recommend restaurants and activities. The idea behind Tribes is to provide information based on what people with similar travel styles have enjoyed, according to Gogobot founder Travis Katz. For example, if you often travel with your family, Gogobot will recommend kid-friendly experiences.
The company connects to booking sites, like Booking.com and Expedia, to provide easy access for making reservations. It’s available in the App Store and on Google Play.
Locish co-founders Alexis Christodoulou and Grigoris Zontanos set out to address the problem of a “one-size-fits-all” approach for online recommendations.
“Plowing through millions of online reviews can make looking for a needle in the haystack seem like a walk in the park,” said Zontanos. “Even when you do come across an intriguing review, vague terms like ‘fun place’ or ‘great drinks’ provide little guidance and no platform for you to ask specific questions, let alone receive quick, tailored answers.”
When you first sign on, the app asks you a few questions about your preferences. Then it gives you recommendations based on those, instead of just showing what is popular among the crowd. The app also lets you ask a question of other users nearby: If you’re traveling in New York, for example, you can ask, “Where’s a great bar with classic cocktails?” and locals can offer suggestions in real time.
Nara’s tagline is “stop searching, start finding,” meaning the goal is to save you the time you would usually spend on search engines and review sites.
Nara Logics, the Cambridge-based company that makes the app, is focused on more than trip recommendations: The platform uses computational neuroscience to analyze the structure of the web and personalize information based on each individual traveler’s preferences, according to CEO Tom Copeman.
Nara is available in the App Store and on Google Play.
Condé Nast Traveler’s Gold List
Condé Nast Traveler has a new travel app available in the App Store this week that collects all of the hotels, resorts, cruises, restaurants and bars recommended in issues of the magazine, organizing them based on destination.
In addition to providing a guide to all of the posh properties, Gold List includes recommendations from VITs, or Very Important Travelers. The inaugural VITs include fashion stylist Ann Caruso, hotelier Jeff Klein and artist Natasha Law.
Lodging and dining options that look appealing can be saved in an in-app “stream,” which is private unless specifically shared, either through social channels or to a public community within the app.
The Gold List will be updated quarterly, with content “from tastemakers around the world.” It’s available in the App Store.
JetPac City Guides
JetPac City Guides is an app built on top of Instagram, analyzing millions of photos to reveal more about the locations where they are taken. The app was first launched in December of last year, with version two — which includes improved search — released last month.
JetPac is available in the App Store.