The Best Apps for the Holiday Season

It's hard to believe we're already approaching the end of 2017, but we're looking forward to ushering in a fantastic new year. Before that, though, we've got to get through the holidays. It's the most wonderful time of the year (where have we heard that before...?), but it can also be stressful! That's why we put together our list of the 50 best apps for the holiday season. From shopping to cooking to general life hacks, we've got you covered with apps that'll make your life easier this holiday season, so you can enjoy more and stress less. Cheers, and happy holidays from Device Pitstop!

MyFitnessPal

MyFitnessPal

Fitness

Ugh, calorie counting. It's a pain, but for some of us, it's even more important during the holiday season. MyFitnessPal makes calorie counting easy and pain free. Set your weight loss goal (or just set your goal to maintain your current weight, a tall order in the face of cookies and gravy and cordials galore), then MyFitnessPal will calculate your daily calorie goal. After that, all you have to do is log your food intake using their vast database of nutrition stats. Easy.

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Strava

Strava

Fitness

If you're a runner, you probably like to keep track of how many miles you log, holidays or not. And, if you're traveling, you might want to keep track of the routes you try outside of your home city. Strava does that. Strava is a GPS-based app that records your movement during runs, and it connects you with a community of other runners, so you can get route suggestions and tips and all those other running tidbits you love.

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Zombies, Run!

Zombies, Run!

Fitness

If your drive to exercise is running low this holiday season, here's some motivation of a different kind: it's Zombies, Run! Zombies, Run! is a exercise app that changes the running game into, well, a game. Just download the app, throw on your running shoes, plug in your earbuds, and get out there. Zombie, Run! gets you all set up with a zombie mission, adds some sweet music to run to, and lets you know when zombies are chasing you. When that happens, you better up your speed, lest you get eaten. How's that for motivation?

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Nike Training Club

Nike Training Club

Fitness

Sometimes it's just easier to work out when someone else tells you what to do. Like, say, a personal trainer. That's exactly what Nike Training Club is: it's a personal training app that lives in your smartphone, can be customized to address your personal fitness goals, and doesn't come with the hefty price tag of an in-person trainer. Plus, with Nike Training Club, you can track your progress with stats and figures, so you can dial your numbers in and never stop making gains.

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Endomondo

Endomondo

Fitness

If you're not into Nike, or if you just want to add even more variety to your on-the-go personal training cache, check out Endomondo: it's Under Armour's personal training app. Endomondo is super customizable, the variety of available workouts is vast, and you'll get in-app, verbal encouragement as you work out. And it's free... can't beat that deal.

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Wish

Wish

Shopping

This one is for all you bargain hunters out there: it's the Wish app. Wish offers exclusive deals and deep discounts on trending items, and two featured items per hour receive an even greater discount. Just because it's the holiday season doesn't mean you have to pay full price for every item on your list, and with deals this good, you can't afford to miss out on the Wish app.

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Etsy

Etsy

Shopping

Etsy is pretty much the premier online marketplace for unique handmade or vintage gifts from independent vendors. If you can dream it up, there's probably an artisan on Etsy who makes it. Payments are secure, and shipping is fast and reliable. This season, all your gifts can be one-of-a-kind with Etsy.

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Redbubble

Redbubble

Shopping

Check out Redbubble for your super-unique gift giving needs. Redbubble is an ecommerce platform for artists and crafty types, and you can find all kinds of distinctive gifts for everyone on your list. And, bonus, they've got products sectioned out based on themes like pop culture, animals, food, and patterns, and they've got a section for featured artists, alongside your typical men, women, and baby sections.

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Zazzle

Zazzle

Shopping

Zazzle is custom EVERYTHING. You can get monogrammed leggings and rubber stamps, you can plaster your favorite photos on mugs and stickers and snow globes, you can even make a pillowcase with your face on it, if you want. With customizable gifts like these, your loved ones will never forget how great you are, because they'll be drinking from a mug with your face on it.

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LivingSocial

LivingSocial

Shopping

If you're an out-of-the-box gift giver (or, if you're not one yet, but you want to be), check out LivingSocial. LivingSocial is an online marketplace that features great deals for local attractions, restaurants, and services in your area. Check it out -- this holiday season you can get more bang for your buck and still give great presents like restaurant gift certificates and yoga passes.

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Yummly

Yummly

Recipes

Whether you're putting together a holiday feast or attending an office potluck, the holidays are a great time to try out new recipes to share with the people you love. Yummly hosts a huge database of delicious recipes, and they've got food-related articles, too. Careful, though, you could get lost for days with all the tantalizing food photos you'll find on Yummly.

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Epicurious

Epicurious

Recipes

Epicurious is the answer to all things cooking and cooking-related. You'll find recipes, articles, daily kitchen tips, and awesome cooking videos, everything you need to get through the holiday season. But they don't just specialize in food -- Epicurious also features useful content like holiday gift-giving guies and party planning resources, plus tons of super pretty pictures from table spreads to tapas, and you can even sign up for thier newsletter.

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Cookpad

Cookpad

Recipes

Cookpad is like social media for cooking: it's a platform dedicated to cooks and foodie types just like you. You can share recipes, keep a recipe diary, and chat with other cooks. It's a great place to engage in a huge community of people who are passionate about food. Sweet!

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Pinterest

Pinterest

Recipes

Pinterest is pretty much the go-to site for ideas and inspiration of all kinds, and the Pinterest app is super useful when it comes to planning a meal or a party. You can search by ingredient or recipe type, and Pinterest will pull up a plethora of options to choose from; the only trouble you'll have will be picking just a few.

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BigOven

BigOven

Recipes

BigOven is your complete menu-planning resource: you can research recipes, put together a grocery list, and make a targeted menu plan. If you've got complex ideas for entertaining your guests this holiday season, or even if you're just going to a neighborhood party, BigOven can help you keep all your ducks in a row.

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Instead

Instead

Giving

Instead is a handy little app that can help you figure out how to fit micro-donations into your budget. Like, instead of buying coffee at the coffee shop a couple times a week, you could brew your own, and then suddenly you've got 10 extra dollars you can donate. Pretty slick, right? It's easy, and Instead operates on a super-lean budget, so only a tiny portion of your donation goes toward the cost of keeping Instead up and running. Nice.

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Give 2 Charity

Give 2 Charity

Giving

Here's your charitable giving resource for the season: the Give 2 Charity app hooks you up with local charities based on your philanthropic interests and location. All you have to do is download the app, put in your location info, and you'll be off and running. It's free to use, and you can earn extra giving points for the charity of your choice by referring friends.

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Charity Tap

Charity Tap

Giving

Charity Tap is a super unique, super fun, super free way to give back. All you have to do is download the app, and then get to tapping. Each time you tap your screen, you give one grain of rice to hungry people around the world. The rice is donated by the United Nations World Food Programme, and is distributed to people in need everywhere. You can even compete with your friends to see who can tap out the most rice.

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Tinbox

Tinbox

Giving

You don't need all kinds of extra money to make a charitable donation: Tinbox lets you give back with just a tap on your phone screen. Users simply download the app and select their areas of philanthropic interest. From there, the logos of Tinbox partnering companies will show up. All you have to do is tap the company logo, and that company will donate $1 to charity. Easy-peasy, and you get to feel good about yourself. Nice.

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Charity Miles

Charity Miles

Giving

This one is pretty cool: the Charity Miles app logs the miles you walk or run (like, even when you're just running errands, so easy...) and you earn money for charity with each mile. It works like this: Charity Miles partners with large corporations, and the corporate sponsors agree to make a donation on your behalf for each mile your run or walk. You can help people in need just by doing what you'd do anyway. How easy is that?!

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Heads Up

Heads Up

Party Games

Ok, this one is pretty much a no-brainer must-have for any holiday party: it's Ellen DeGeneres' party game Head's Up. It's the tons-of-fun game of questions and answers that'll keep you and your party guests laughing until your faces hurt. Plus, it's free to download. Boom.

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Who Can

Who Can't Draw

Party Games

You're going to be laughing your buns off with the Who Can't Draw app. It's free, and it's exactly what it sounds like: you and your friends take turns drawing a given word from the Who Can't Draw database and then compare to find out, wait for it... who can't draw!

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Spaceteam

Spaceteam

Party Games

This app characterizes itself as a "cooperative shouting game," which should give you an idea of what to expect with Spaceteam. Here's the premise: you and your teammates are on a spaceship that's about to fall apart. Each of you will be assigned a control panel, and you'll be in charge of managing your portion of the spacecraft, plus communicating (in shouts, most likely) with your teammates. It's fun, and it's yelling. Awesome.

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Reverse Charades

Reverse Charades

Party Games

You're familiar with charades, right? Good. This app goes with a reverse take on the game: instead of one person acting something out for the rest of the group, reverse charades has the group acting something out for one person, in hopes of getting that person to guess as many words as possible. It's teamwork, yelling, and acting, what more could you ask for?!

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Psych!

Psych!

Party Games

Psych! is another Ellen-endorsed party game, so you know it's gotta be good. It's basically trivia combined with Balderdash. When it's your turn, you'll draw a question and your friends will submit zany answers.Then, those answers will be folded in with the real answer, and it's your turn to pick the real one from among the fakes. So, have you got the trivia chops to throw down? (Hint: it's better if you don't. Your friends will LOVE making you the butt of their joke when you pick the wrong answer.)

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Untapped

Untapped

Entertaining

Untapped is an app that's as useful for entertaining as it is for your everday life (if you're into beer, that is): it's totally dedicated to aquainting you with new brews. You can browse beers, track your reactions to new beers you sample, and unlock badges for all the new beers you try. It's handy for entertaining, too, because you can use it to research and plan your beer selection. Or, if you've got relatives in town, you can find cool, beer-centric places to take them. Nice.

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Highball

Highball

Entertaining

Alrighty, this one for all of you fancy-pants party planners out there: Highball is the go-to app for finding, sharing, and comparing craft cocktail recipes. You can find recipes or build your own, and then share your picture of each cocktail. Plus, it's shareable on your other social media accounts, too, so everyone in your network can get an eyeful of your pretty cocktail experiements.

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Pro Party Planner

Pro Party Planner

Entertaining

Pro Party Planner is your go-to party planning app this holiday season. You can plan your budget, create seating charts, delegate tasks, and build shopping lists, all in one place. Plus, if you're the type that's really into crossing things off lists and keeping track of your progress, you can do that right in Pro Party Planner, so you've got your thumb on the status of your big event at any given time.

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Hello Vino

Hello Vino

Entertaining

You've always thought about how much you could use a personal wine assistant, right? Ok, maybe not. But you can probably agree that it'd be nice to have some help navigating your way through the aisles and aisles of wine at the liquor store. That's exactly what Hello Vino is for. You can track your wine preferences by scanning labels of your favorite wines, and you can use the app to pick aspects of wines you'd like to try. Hello Vino will send you personalized wine recommendations, and you can even select wine pairings for your big holiday feast.

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BigNight

BigNight

Entertaining

BigNight promises to help you plan your dinner party like a pro; you can set your menus, build your shopping lists, and add reminders to keep everyone on the same page. And, if you're a big time party planner, you can organize your events and keep them all in tidy, ordered files, so your holiday events don't get mixed in with your epic summer barbeques or your sister's dog's birthday. You get the idea.

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Headspace

Headspace

Stress Management

Holidays are great, but they can be super stressful, too. Headspace is all about giving you the tools you need to add an easy meditation and mindfulness practice to your life, so you can start de-stressing in just a few minutes a day. Total bonus, you can use it to learn to sleep better, too. Can't argue with that.

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Lake

Lake

Stress Management

So, adult coloring books are totally a thing, and people find them super useful for relieving stress. Lake takes the coloring book concept and makes it mobile: it's a coloring book for your phone! They've got a huge collection of coloring pages from Instagram's best illustrators, and you can keep your stress in check as you zone into your new coloring project.

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Daily Yoga

Daily Yoga

Stress Management

When it comes to the holidays, time is always in short supply, and getting to the yoga studio can easily fall to the bottom of any priorities list. Daily Yoga brings your practice to you: they've got classes of all types and for practincioners at all skill levels. Plus, you can track your progress and engage with an online community of yogis just like you, so that you don't have to sacrifice your practice just because it's the holidays.

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HelloMind

HelloMind

Stress Management

It has to be said: the holidays are not always a happy time for everyone. It can be a rough time of year, but HelloMind is here to help. You'll get access to self-help audio sessions for everything from stress management to self-esteem to treatment for anxiety, and you can choose short sessions or long ones. Just pick your fix, plug in your earbuds, and get started.

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Happify

Happify

Stress Management

The Happify app is chock-full of games and activities focused on relieving stress, anxiety, and depression. In short, Happify is all about helping you feel happy more often, so you can live your life better every day. And you can use it anywhere, so it's super useful even when you've got a house-full of guests.

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Tripit

Tripit

Getting there and getting around

If you've got a heavy-duty travel schedule this season, you're going to want Tripit. Tripit is a one-stop shop for organizing all your holiday travel plans. All you have to do is book your travel arrangements, then forward your confirmation emails to Tripit. They'll put all your plans together to create a master itinerary that you can access anywhere, anytime, so you can stop stressing about managing your travel plans.

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CityMapper

CityMapper

Getting there and getting around

The CityMapper app is super useful if you're visiting relatives in a new city and you need to get around. With CityMapper, all you have to do is plug in your destination, and it'll spit out a detailed itinerary that'll get you where you need to go, step by step. Once you start using CityMapper, you'll wonder how you ever got around without it.

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Triposo

Triposo

Getting there and getting around

Triposo is your resource for finding fun in a new city. You can find nightlife, top attractions, and hidden gems, and you can find user-contributed reviews to get an idea of what to expect when you arrive at your destination. You can peruse and save hotels to your in-app bucketlist and then book right from the app, and it's got local, gps-powered street maps so you don't have to worry about getting lost. It's free, and (major bonus here), it works without the internet. Perfect.

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App in the Air

App in the Air

Getting there and getting around

App in the Air is a flight tracking app that keeps users up to date with real-time information and flight details. Delayed? App in the Air will let you know. Gate change? Same story. You can also use App in the Air to organize your flights, keep track of the places you've visited, and find things to do in the airport, so whiling away the time during layovers doesn't have to be so boring.

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Waze

Waze

Getting there and getting around

This app is good to have for your everyday life, but it's especially helpful when you're trying to get around during the craziest traffic season of the year. Waze is a navigation app that'll get you where you need to go, and they report traffic conditions that are verified in real-time by users just like you. Waze won't make traffic any faster (is there an app for that?!), but at least you'll know what you're dealing with before you get on the road.

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Kindle

Kindle

On-the-go Fun

For all your bookish needs this holiday season, download the Kindle app on your tablet or phone. It's super easy, and you'll get access to Amazon's HUGE library of e-books, so you'll never run out of reading material, no matter how far you have to travel or how much you need to get away from your relatives.

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Netflix

Netflix

On-the-go Fun

You don't have to press pause on your latest Netflix binge just because you're going out of town or spending the weekend at Grandma's wifi-free house -- just install the Netflix app on your phone, download the show or movie you want to watch, and boom: you can watch wherever, whenever. All you need is a Netflix account and internet connection to get started, and you're off and running.

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Pocketcast

Pocketcast

On-the-go Fun

The Pocketcast app has podcasts fah days. They've got a catalog of over 300,000 podcasts to choose from, so you can search for your favorites and browse to find new podcasts you'll love. Plus, Pocketcast has got all kinds of neat trimming and organizing features, and you can access your podcast library wherever you get wifi.

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Pocket

Pocket

On-the-go Fun

Pocket is a great resource for loading up on offline content, and for keeping track of all those things you really want to read, but just don't have time for. Save webpages and other items to your Pocket app, and they'll be right there when you're ready. And since you don't need internet access to read your saved articles, you can easily read all the things you want to, from wherever you want.

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Spotify

Spotify

On-the-go Fun

If you're the kind of person that needs access to your music at all times, Spotify is the app for you. They've got a HUGE catalog of songs and podcasts to choose from, and they'll even curate a weekly playlist just for you, based on your previous listening. And if you get Spotify Premium, you can set your music to be available offline, so you don't even have to worry about wifi access.

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GrubHub

GrubHub

Life Hacks

It's great if you can always feed your holiday guests homemade, delicious food, but let's be real: it's just not always possible. When you don't have the time (or the resources, or the patience), the Grubhub app is a lifesaver. Use the app to check out local menus, pick out your food, place your order, and have it delivered to your door. Food problem: solved.

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Splittr

Splittr

Life Hacks

Splittr is the kind of app that makes you wonder why someone didn't come up with it sooner: it's for splitting the bill. You can add as many people to your group as you want, and you can add items as you go. Think of it: now going on a group vacation doesn't have to involve all the awkward accounting that has to take place afterward. You can invite all involved parties to sync with the app, and you can even export your data to a CSV if you want to.

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Dark Sky

Dark Sky

Life Hacks

Dark Sky is the weather app for hyperlocal, super accurate, down-to-the-minute forecasts. Like, literally down to the minute, so when it looks like rain, you'll know exactly when it's going to start, and then you can plan accordingly. Dark Sky also let's you set notifications for weather events, and if you're a weather enthusiast, they've got the prettiest weather maps around.

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Mint

Mint

Life Hacks

Tis the season to spend ALL the money! Which means it's even more important to keep track of how much you're spending, where, and what bills you still need to pay. Intuit's Mint app helps you manage your budget, bills, and even your credit score, so you're always super acquainted with your state of financial affairs.

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Wunderlist

Wunderlist

Life Hacks

Wunderlist is basically a THE life hack app. With Wunderlist, you can manage all your to-do lists in one place, set reminders to stay on track, share your information with anyone, and access your lists from whatever device you choose. It's a super-slick way to keep everything under control, and you Wunderlist even as an email-to-action function, so you can turn your emails into action lists just by forwarding them. How easy is that?!

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