Over 70 million people have registered with Duolingo, a free and incredibly well-designed language learning app.

Though not a replacement for proper language tuition, the app is a fun way to get the basics, or to keep yourself fresh on grammar and vocabulary, before a trip abroad. Just like a computer game, the app guides you through levels that you need to complete before advancing, and you gain experience points along the way.

Choose from the usual options of Spanish, French, German and Italian, through lesser known languages such as Dutch, Swedish, Ukrainian and even Irish!

Free, iOS and Android

Wolfram Sun Exposure

There are a few apps out there that help you manage your time in the sun safely, but this one offers the most detailed information to keep you informed. You enter your skin type and it calculates how long you can spend sunning yourself before getting burned, based on the time of day, where you are and the strength of sun cream you’re wearing. It also provides UV forecasts for your location.

This is an absolutely vital app for anyone prone to sunburn. How many times have we seen someone the shade of a pomegranate walking the beach and thought, “Ouch! That’s gonna leave a mark …”

$0.99, iOS

Hipmunk Travel

Hipmunk presents a fast, all-in-one travel planning and booking solution, with a powerful flight and hotel search engine, as well as easy in-app booking. In addition to the usual flight search criteria such as price, Hipmunk also includes an agony index for flight duration, number of stops and other factors. Users can also take advantage of last minute hotel deals, view reviews from TripAdvisor and other sources, and check out heat maps that show hotel proximity to shopping, dining and entertainment venues.

Yes, there are many apps out there like this one, so really it comes down to which works best for you. We do love the “agony index” aspect, though.

Free, iOS and Android


Looking for a good airport lounge in which to kill time between flights? Tired of trying to rest on chairs with those infernal armrests? Whether you’re traveling economy or first class, LoungeBuddy comes to the rescue, helping you find airport lounges in any of more than 500 airports worldwide. A helpful Lounge Access Wizard allows users to input the details of their trip, service level and any applicable elite benefits or memberships, and LoungeBuddy pulls up a list of locations you can access for free or a one-time fee. Users can also filter or search by amenities, as well as view and post reviews and photos to share your experience with other travelers.

Free, iOS and Android