What travel tech can help you save time and money?
On the experience of travel, French author Gustave Flaubert once said: “Travel makes one modest. You see what a tiny place you occupy in the world.” There is a lot to be said for finding the time and resources for adventure. Still, travel in the modern age comes with unique circumstances that were not a consideration in Flaubert’s day, like complicated entry requirements, rates for currency exchanges and even the uncomfortable conditions of air travel.
Thankfully, there are several websites, apps, and gadgets that have been developed specifically to make travel less stressful and more comfortable. Read on to learn more about some handy tools to have on hand for your next trip.
Choosing a travel destination
Sometimes, a specific purpose like a business meeting, conference or destination wedding determines the exact date and location we travel. However, now that travel restrictions are easing up, many Canadians are simply looking to get away at the lowest possible price.
Enter AI-fuelled apps like Hopper, that allow users to keep an eye on a number of different trip options and set alerts on the best rates for travel to those destinations, helping travellers save time and money when choosing a vacation spot. Business Insider once said, “this app will change the way you book flights.”
Besides the obvious – quarantine and vaccine requirements – another important consideration when selecting a travel destination is whether a visa is required for Canadians to enter your country of choice. Even long-standing arrangements with countries that did not require an entry visa for tourists can change, and ultimately, it’s up to the traveller, not the airline or the destination country, to stay on top of new visa regulations.
In the current environment of restricted travel due to COVID-19, you should also consult the Government of Canada website for up-to-date travel advice and advisories.
Currency conversion tools
Keeping abreast of the value of the exchange value of the Canadian dollar can be a challenging experience for travellers. This is especially true for those headed to parts of Europe that are part of the Eurozone or to the U.S. It’s such a hot topic that our colleagues at Oaken Financial have prepared a post that highlights travel destinations where the loonie can go farther. This article from Trip Savvy lists their picks for the top five currency converter apps to help you avoid surprises when you receive your credit card statement at home.
Speaking of credit card statements, in addition to the actual currency conversion rate, many credit cards also add a foreign exchange fee to charges made in another currency. To avoid these fees, it’s worthwhile to take the time you need to find a credit card that offers a benefit such as no foreign exchange fees.
Air travel comfort
If it feels like the amount of space you get on an airplane is less than it was ten or 20 years ago, it’s not your imagination. In the early 2000s, rows in economy class were an average of 86 centimetres apart. Today, they are 76 centimetres apart or even 71 centimetres on some short-haul flights.
Other than pricey upgrades to premium economy or business class, there is not much to be done about cramped airplane conditions. However, there are gadgets you can use to feel more comfortable during flights. Top items recommended by travel sites include a high-quality inflatable pillow, a comfortable sleep mask, and every traveller’s best friend, noise-cancelling headphones. This post from Travel Away offers a top 10 list of the best airplane travel gadgets for your consideration.
Travel safety apps
When travelling to someplace new, or even when returning to a place you have been to before, personal safety is something that should always be kept in mind. One safety tip to consider when travelling in a vehicle-for-hire is to use a mapping tool such as Google Maps or Waze to alert the driver to the fact that you’re aware of the recommended route to your destination.
To help Canadians stay safe while travelling, the Government of Canada has made the Travel Smart app available for download. The app offers advice and advisories on over 200 destinations worldwide and provides quick access to emergency contact information for embassies and consulates abroad. Be sure to check with your cell phone provider to determine whether you have coverage in the area you are travelling to, and what data or roaming charges you may incur if using your cell phone while away from home.
Best no-fee credit card for travel
One of the most important things you can pack for travelling is a credit card that offers excellent travel benefits with no annual fee. The Home Trust Preferred Visa offers a host of travel-friendly benefits, including no exchange fees on foreign currency transactions and 1% CashBack Rewards on all eligible purchases. All with no annual fee!
Visit our website to learn more and apply online today!
The information, materials and opinions contained in this Blog are provided for your information only. This Blog does not constitute legal, financial or other professional advice and you should not rely on it as an alternative to specific advice based on your particular circumstance. This Blog contains links to third party websites. These links are provided for information and convenience; Home Trust does not endorse the content of any third party website, and it makes no representation or warranty as to the information on such third party sites. By clicking on any link to a third party site, you leave Home Trust’s website and do so at your own risk. Home Trust disclaims all liability for any damage or loss that results from your access to or reliance on information contained in this Blog or any third party site.
Foreign currency transactions are converted at the exchange rate set by Visa International, without additional surcharge.
Cash advances, balance transfers, interest, fees and foreign transactions (including online purchases in foreign currencies) are not eligible for CashBack Rewards.