Three apps to split travel expenses with friends
Travel means constant spending on transport, accommodation, food and more. If you’re with a group of friends, it can get complicated, but it doesn’t need to be. These new apps for smartphones make it easy to track expenses on short or long trips
Although the core of this app is the same as the others, Splitwise (free, splitwise.com) includes some unique features. As well as being available on iOS, Android and Windows Phone, contacts can be added via a Facebook account, and there’ a nice ‘whiteboard’ for exchanging messages about group expenditure. Users can log-in on a phone or desktop computer to log expenditure while if anyone needs proof, it’s possible to add photos of receipts, which could make it useful for business trips, too. You can even attach PayPal accounts to settle-up automatically.
It’s only available as an app for the iPhone and iPad, but this low-cost app (HK$15, splittrapp.com) keeps things simple yet comprehensive. Working completely offline, you just add the name and email addresses of your companions, enter what each person paid for what, and a report is generated and emailed to everyone when you get home. Supporting groups and families as well as individuals, Splittr also supports multiple currencies, but you will have to nominate one person in your group to take charge of inputting data.
Although the idea behind CostSplit (free, costsplitapp.com) is the same as Splittr, this is much more than a clever calculator. There’s a lot more tech at work; everyone on the trip can download the app, sign in and log their own expenditure at each stage of a trip, which is then synced using the cloud (though much of it works offline). You can split expenses unevenly, use the currency for the country you’re in, and generate a report when the trip is over about who owes what to whom. Sadly it’s only available for Apple’s iOS devices, though that does mean it syncs with iCloud.