Five of the Best Apps for When You’re Heading to the Airport

by Daniel McCarthy
Five of the Best Apps for When You’re Heading to the Airport

Photo: ymgerman / Shutterstock.com.


Airports are getting busier. According to the Bureau of Transportation Studies, 2017 was the busiest year ever for U.S. airlines, by more than 3 percent, and most industry forecasts say that statistic is only going to increase this year. With the highest number of passengers in history, anxious travelers have more on their minds as they head to the airport, but there are tools that they can use to ease their concerns, including some that are accessible right on their cell phones.

Here are five apps that will help to smooth out the difficulties of air travel today, to pass along to your clients.

MY TSA APP
My TSA App.

My TSA App                                                                                                                                 
The official app from the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is a good addition to a traveler’s digital toolkit. The app’s features allow travelers to see status reports at airports around the country, including delays, traveler volume, and PreCheck lane statuses, along with a travel checklist and a database of most TSA rules.

The app also includes a good list of approved and unapproved items — called “Can I Bring?” — that travelers can use when packing, although the list could be more comprehensive. It also gives travelers access to AskTSA, which is the department’s question-and-answer system that is operated through Facebook Messenger and Twitter, where travelers can typically get a quick response to their questions.

Loungebuddy
Loungebuddy.

Loungebuddy
The idea behind Loungebuddy is to produce a crowd-sourced guide to lounges at more than 80 airports around the world while also giving travelers a chance to score discount passes.

Travelers can download Loungebuddy and search by airport and then terminal to see what each lounge offers (food, drinks, internet, business services, TVs, and more) and where they are located in the terminals. Each lounge is sorted into four different rankings — basic, solid, fresh, and luxe — depending on the amenities and the user reviews.

Travelers can also get day passes through the app, sometimes at a discount rate, and can pay by credit card or Apple Pay.

Not all airports are included in Loungebuddy (a search for local airports in New York showed that LaGuardia Airport was not available).

FLIO
FLIO.

FLIO
FLIO calls itself the “Global Airport App,” because it offers information on more than 900 airports, including dining options, parking prices, flight schedules, hotel options, attractions nearby, and more.

FLIO does a really nice job of putting together everything that a traveler will need to know, but the most impressive feature might be its automatic WiFi activation that makes all trips, but especially those with multiple stops at several different airports, just a bit easier. FLIO will take a traveler’s information and use it for a login at all airports under its umbrella, saving them the hassle of going through an activation or validation process each time. 

SeatGuru
SeatGuru.

SeatGuru
For a lot of travelers, there’s way more to think about than just aisle or window seat when it comes to choosing where to sit on an airplane. SeatGuru might be the best app for finicky travelers to have on their smartphone. It allows you to see the inside of an airplane and shows exactly where a seat is positioned, so you can choose one that lets you get close, or far away, to the bathroom or kitchen or galley or emergency exit rows.

SeatGuru also includes a feature that allows travelers to check on flight status by number or route.

CBP Mobile Passport
CBP Mobile Passport.

CBP Mobile Passport
Officially authorized by Customs and Border Protection (CBP) for U.S. and Canadian travelers for use at three cruise ports and 26 airports, and counting, Mobile Passport can help travelers expedite their entry into the U.S. by storing passport and declaration information on their phones.

The app is free to use and does not require pre-approval (nor does it replace a passport), but it does allow you to forget about filling out that customs declaration paper form with a golf pencil before heading to the customs line after your flight lands.

Mobile Passport is also fairly easy to use — the app will grab and store your info through your smartphone’s camera and will allow you to use that camera to take a selfie to store on your profile. You can fill out the trip info once you land. Once you submit the info to CBP, you’ll get a QR code that can be scanned by a CBP officer at customs.

  4
  0
Daily Top List

Travel Tends for 2019

1. Getting off the Instagram trail

2. Solo travel is an undeniable force.

3. “Wokeness” and travel collide.

4. The continued return of destinations hit hard by political and natural disasters.

5. The mode of travel helps define your trip.

Source: UpRoxx

TMR THIS WEEK
http://services.travelsavers.com/AMGService.svc/REST/GetImage?ImageID=54ea58dc-0718-e911-800f-782bcb667b27

National Parks Make Headlines, Serve as Reminder to Travel Advisors to Ready Clients for Peak Season

Despite the current shutdown disruptions, the time for travel to these natural wonders will soon be upon us once more. Tour operators are at the ready, which means now is the time for travel advisors to think ahead.

TMR Recommendations
Top Stories
African Travel’s Top Travel Advisors to be Rewarded
African Travel’s Top Travel Advisors to be Rewarded

Six agents will enjoy a luxurious safari vacation, with winners based on client bookings made between December 2018 and May 2019.

FIT/Packaged Vacations Report Card Reveals Travel Advisors Are a Supplier’s Best Friend
FIT/Packaged Vacations Report Card Reveals Travel Advisors Are a Supplier’s Best Friend

Research shows independent operators have made agent distribution channel their most valued source for business.

Riviera Extends Booking Incentive to Agents in Gratitude for Their Partnership
Riviera Extends Booking Incentive to Agents in Gratitude for Their Partnership

The European river cruise company said its travel partners can earn up to $800 in Visa gift cards for new bookings confirmed before the end of February.

U.S. State Department Issues Travel Warning to China, Urging ‘Increased Caution’
U.S. State Department Issues Travel Warning to China, Urging ‘Increased Caution’

The advisory warns that the Chinese government has used ‘exit bans’ on U.S. citizens, barring them from leaving the country.

Avanti Releases New Rail Brochure, Educates Advisors About Train Travel
Avanti Releases New Rail Brochure, Educates Advisors About Train Travel

The FIT operator is also offering a commission incentive for new bookings made before the end of February.

Social Media Guru Offers Insight on New Travel Agent Study
Social Media Guru Offers Insight on New Travel Agent Study

Travel Market Report’s Outlook on Social Media takes a deep dive into what’s working and what’s not.

News Briefs
TMR Report Cards & Outlooks
Advertiser's Voice
Advertiser's Voice: Tauck