Written by JP Holecka / categories: Applications, From the CEO, Recommendations

JP Holecka discusses the latest apps that make life better or easier each week in his regular segment on Roundhouse Radio 98.3 FM. To hear his thoughts on the best travel apps available right now, (7 minute listen).

Arctic temperatures. Freezing rain. Black ice. Just some of the reasons why so many Canadians migrate south for the winter. This week, we look at some of the apps that make it easier to escape the cold for a week or two.

Smarter trip planning with Google Trips

( iOS | Android)

Google Trips is yet more proof of the fact that Google is reaching farther and farther into our everyday lives, including travel. This app gathers data from your Gmail inbox to intelligently combine all of your travel information (flight plans, itineraries, hotel and restaurant bookings and so on) into a single interface. It also draws on Google’s search technology to create customized, organized lists of attractions and integrates with Google Maps to guide you to them once you are there. All of its maps and suggestions can be downloaded for offline use, so you won’t have to rely on expensive or patchy data availability once you reach your destination.

Sit back and relax with SeatGuru

( Web App | iOS | Android)

Every frequent flyer knows that not all airplane seats are equally good, even within the same class. Grabbing the right seat early can make all the difference between a relaxing flight and eight hours of cramped long-haul misery. Sit in front of the exit row and you’ll be stuck with a seat that won’t recline. Sit by the main washroom and you’ll have to put up with terrible smells and lines of people in the aisle. This app provides color-coded maps of every airplane on every carrier, telling you which seats to take and which to avoid.

Hop on the best price with Hopper

( iOS | Android )

According to the creators of Hopper, their award-winning app can save you up to 40 percent on flights by analyzing billions of potentials. Like rival flight booking tools Skyscanner and Kayak, it can show you the cheapest dates to book, but it also alerts you to the current deals using push notifications. Using its streamlined interface, you can book a flight in under a minute. Impulse flyers beware!

Avoid the lines with Wait Times For Disneyland

( iOS | Android )

The Magic Kingdom can feel a little less magical when you are in a two-hour line for the Big Thunder Mountain Railroad. Disney offers their own wait time tracking, but this independent app draws on crowd-sourced, real-time information to display more accurate times, so you can plan your day to spend more time riding and less time waiting. The displayed wait times and ride closure information are based on submissions from other app users at the park, and rides are viewable by park, by GPS, by search, or by viewing a saved list of favourites. As well as the text interface, it offers VoiceOver Accessibility for blind and partially-sighted users. VersaEdge Software have also released a tracking app for Walt Disney World.