Traveling business is doing extremely well and isn’t going to go down in the nearest future. Today people can travel to any part of the world choosing any means of transportation provided. The whole traveling process is supported by tour operators, chains of hotels, restaurants and locals to please the tourists and make them spend more. To generate even more revenue business owners take advantage of mobile technologies, since smartphones are travellers’ usual companions on trips. Due to this fact demand on travel application development has increased in the past few years.
How to create a custom travel application?
Today you can’t conduct travelling business and not be present on mobile devices. So if you’re a tourer agency or an accommodation provider of any type and you still don’t have an own mobile app, here what you should do immediately:
- Study the apps of your competitors
- Think about marketing strategy
- Select the method to monetize your future app
- Find a development team
- Create a MVP
- Launch your custom travel app
- Tell your clients that you went mobile
Must-have features for a travel app
Travelers use travel apps to plan trips, make reservations at hotels, purchase airplane/train tickets, etc. Therefore your app has to satisfy the needs of an average traveler. To make your app successful and competitive, be sure to include the following features:
- Trip planning
- Ratings & Recommendation
- Weather forecast
Let’s look at each feature in detail.
Maps. Not a single travel app operates without in-built map. That’s why map integration is a must. Your app has to contain detailed maps which are easy to use and navigate with. They should provide as much relevant information about the local tourist attractions and restaurants as possible.
To integrate maps into a travel app, developers use existing solutions such as Google Maps API for Android-based apps and MapKit for apps running on iOS devices.
Enable this feature to allow users to plan their trips within your app. The feature should contain such options as list of cities/countries, transportation provided, lists of hotel, etc. This feature has to be implemented with other features (maps, booking, transportation).
User should be able to book hotels, tickets and tours and other services directly from an app.
One of the most popular hotel booking APIs are Orbitz and Arzoo.
To integrate booking of airline tickets, the APIs of such services as Google Flights, Skyscanner and Expedia can be used.
Ratings & Recommendation
People like to read reviews about places they’re about to visit such as cafes, restaurants, hotels. So you should give them such opportunity. Also let them leave their own reviews and rate places within app. Developers usually use third-party services to enable reviews in an app (Olery, TripAdvisor, AirBnb). As for the recommendations they should be based on user’s preferences.
This feature allows travellers to book their means of transportation in a foreign city/country prior to their arrival. App should contain information about schedule, routes and pricing.
A weather forecast right in the travel app is a handy feature for any tourist. For this purpose you can use the APIs of the following online services OpenWeatherMap, YahooWeather or AccuWeather.