Travel & Leisure
updated 9/7/2011 7:49:46 PM ET 2011-09-07T23:49:46

As anyone who’s ever tried to wade through page after page of listings in the travel section of Apple’s App Store can attest, the digital landscape for travelers is both excitingly and bewilderingly expansive. In less than 17 years, we’ve gone from being able to book an airline ticket online to telling a Shanghai cabdriver the address of our hotel in perfect Mandarin via a smart-phone app. Now the question isn’t: What travel websites and apps are available? Rather, it’s: Which ones are essential? That’s where T+L comes in. We’ve spent the past few months road testing hundreds of travel sites, apps, and services both new and established—sometimes getting exactly what we needed (such as, say, that corner room with the great view) and other times finding ourselves high and dry in the dreaded last-row middle seat. Here, our picks of the travel sites and apps that will change the way you travel for the better.

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