Backpacking in Europe can be a great way to see multiple countries in a short timeframe, making it an attractive option to many people across the globe. Backpacking is definitely worth it, but it’s not always easy. It can mean being completely lost in Budapest, having no idea what that Spanish man just said to you, or needing the cheapest way to go from Berlin to Poland because of your tight budget…
Having experienced all of these scenarios and more, I’ve come up with the best apps to have as a backpacker – all of which I used in Europe myself!
Below are my top 6 apps you definitely need to have while travelling in Europe.
#1 Go Euro
Having been a backpacker myself, I know how important it is to make money go a long way – especially when you’re on a tight budget. Continually searching the internet for the absolute cheapest way to get from A to B can be extremely time-consuming, and I’m sure most people would rather be out exploring the new city they’re in than stressing about travel costs…
Well, don’t worry Go Euro has you 100% covered! Enter in any trip and not only will it show you the cheapest way, but the price differences between Bus, Train or Plane. Go Euro made it so easy and convenient for me to book trips for my boyfriend and I on our 3-month adventure in Europe.
Go Euro saves your passenger info and payment details, so it makes it super quick and easy if you’re booking multiple trips. You can also show your tickets on the app, and there’s free cancellation in case you decide to go somewhere else.
If you’re backpacking around Europe, its more than likely that you’re going to be staying in hostels, right? But you want to make sure that you get the best deal, in the best hostel, with the best reviews, and of course – free breakfast! This can become super time consuming, so you can find all of these things and more in one place – Hostelworld.
The Hostelworld app makes it not only easy to book a hostel, but shows you it’s latest reviews what it has on offer, and most importantly where it is located on a map. The app also allows you to filter out exactly what you want in a hostel. For example; if you want a hostel in the centre of Berlin, with free breakfast, a bar and at a budget of €20 per night – Hostelworld can help you find exactly this!
Leading on from GoEuro, FlixBus is another super budget-friendly bus company for backpackers. During our travels in Europe, I almost always used either FlixBus or a transport option on GoEuro. You can buy FlixBus tickets on the GoEuro app, but there are so many perks to having the FlixBus app as well…
Just like Go Euro, you can show your bus tickets directly off the app! There are also lots of other features including showing your buses location and giving live updates on how late or early the bus is going to be. You can find out more about FlixBus and its app in my post – The Do’s and Don’t’s of FlixBus.
Now, this app is definitely one every backpacker should have. I was introduced to Been on a long train trip by a fellow backpacker and I absolutely love it! Been allows you to put in ALL of the countries you’ve ever been to, and show you the percentage of the world you’ve visited.
A little orange map and a list of countries reveal all the awesome places you’ve been! It’s a good way to keep track of where you’ve been, and some of the memories you have associated with those places. I thought I had visited most of the world by now, but it turns out I’ve only seen 31% of it! This app is also what’s motivating me to keep travelling the world.
Of course, the traditional Google Maps is always a great app to have access to, but what about when you don’t have any internet connection? There have been way too many times that I have gotten lost in a city without having any connection to maps, and therefore have absolutely no clue where to go or where I am!
Situations like these are where Maps.me can become an extremely useful tool. Simply download the map while you have an internet connection, and then you are able to pull up the map of the city you are in anytime regardless of whether or not you are connected to the internet.
Maps.me would have come in handy for all those time I used copious amounts of data to try and find something was just around the corner, or that time my boyfriend and I walked thirty-minutes in the wrong direction in Berlin…
#6 Google Translate
Google Translate may seem like an obvious choice of apps to have on a trip to a different country. While Google Translate can obviously be used to translate what other people say and help you also communicate with foreigners. I’m going to be honest here, you can generally get by with a bit of sign language and pointing. If you’re looking for something very specific, this feature comes in handy.
But there is one feature of this app that was such a big help. Google Translate allows you to download a language, scan a word from that language with your camera and it will automatically translate it for you! I can’t tell you how many times I used this feature to help me read restaurant menus, items in shops or to read signs in airports, on trains and buses.