9 best apps for travelling Southeast Asia on a budget

Thanks to modern technology, travelling is now easier than ever and you can organise so much of your trip just by using your smartphone! An added bonus is that they can also stop you from being ripped off.

I’ve travelled all around Southeast Asia and these are the 9 apps that will help you to go anywhere that you need to go.

Remember that Wi-Fi can be patchy in some places, so download your apps onto your phone before you travel!

Read: 7 hacks to improve bad Wi-Fi while travelling that really work

Traveller on her phone

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1. TripAdvisor

I always use TripAdvisor for reviews of attractions, accommodation and restaurants! I’ve stayed in and eaten at enough disappointing places to know that its always worth checking the reviews of places in your area. You might even discover attractions that you didn’t even know about. The app also shows you great deals, so you could nab yourself a bargain!


When I’m travelling as a couple, I like to use to find good guesthouse accommodation for a cheap price! Once you’ve made a few bookings, you become a Genius which means you’re eligible for discounts and you can manage everything within the app. It has a real range of types of hotels, depending on your budget as well as honest reviews from other travellers!

3. Hostelbookers

If you’re travelling alone, on a strict budget or you want to meet other travellers then Hostelbookers is the way to go to find dorm beds around Southeast Asia. Hostels are becoming more and more popular in Asia so its easier than ever to find a cheap bed!

4. Grab taxi

Grab taxi is basically the Uber of Southeast Asia and its commonly used in Myanmar, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam and Philippines. However, if you’re in Cambodia, then PassApp is most commonly used, Brunei uses Dart and Indonesia uses My Blue Bird as well. They all work like Uber. Laos is currently trying to get LOCA off the ground, but I’ve never used this one.

5. Air Asia

If you’re on a budget and you need to quickly get between islands or countries, then its worth getting the Air Asia app which is basically the RyanAir of Southeast Asia. In the app you can book flights and download your boarding pass. Look on Skyscanner below to find cheap flights all over Asia.


The app is for offline maps and I used it to travel all around Southeast Asia, whether on foot or on moped. You can also plot the attractions that you want to visit on the map. Because of this app, I never paid for data while I was travelling and I just used Wi-Fi for downloading, blogging and social media.

7. Tripcoin

If you’re on a budget then Tripcoin can help you track your spending so that you don’t spend more money than you have taken with you! It creates graphs of your purchases and it doesn’t need internet to work.

8. Metro maps

Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Manila and Bangkok all have great metro lines which help you to save money on travelling to places like the Batu Caves near KL. Downloading the apps can help you to plan your journeys, and there are currently metros under construction in Hanoi, Jakarta and Ho Chi Minh City.

9. Bus apps

Not everywhere in Southeast Asia has a bus app, but its worth taking advantage of those that do as it saves you having to pay to go to the bus station! Easybook offers limited routes across Southeast Asia, Thailand has Greenbus, Singapore and Malaysia have CatchThatBus and RedBus now operates in Indonesia. As technology improves many countries will follow and more routes will be added.

When you are travelling around Southeast Asia, don’t forget to look out for water points where you can fill up your bottle either for free or for a small price to save on money and plastic. If you take a Chilly’s bottle then it will keep your water cold all day which is essential in somewhere as hot as Southeast Asia!

If you want to save space in your bag, then I also recommend downloading your guidebooks onto your phone on the Kindle app so that you can plan the attractions that you want to see! I recommend downloading The Rough Guide to Southeast Asia to help you plan your trip in advance and for reference while on the road. You can also enjoy all my Southeast Asia travel blogs on here for free!

Do you have any travel apps that you recommend for Southeast Asia? Share them in the comments below!

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9 best apps for travelling Southeast Asia on a budget
9 best apps for travelling Southeast Asia on a budget


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