With record high numbers of travelers moving through airports they are getting busier; these digital tools can help make the air travel experience easier and less complicated! According to the Bureau of Transportation Studies, 2018 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 they can use to ease their concerns, including some that are accessible right on their cell phones. Here are several apps that will help to smooth out the difficulties of air travel today.
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.
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.
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 thatcamera 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.