Best travel and vacation companion apps for iPhone and iPad
iMore takes a look at the best apps for planning your next vacation or business trip, and the ones you should always have while away.
Whether you're planning a vacation or travel frequently for pleasure or business, there are literally hundreds of apps available in the App Store that deal with all aspects of travel. Everything from airport and transit guides to vacation home finders and more can be found. If you're looking for the absolute best ones, here's a list of the ones we'd highly recommend checking out.
TripIt for iPhone and iPad
If you travel frequently, TripIt is an absolute must have. It's an entire trip organizer all under one roof. While there is a free version of TripIt that can help you stay organized, the Pro version also includes notifications, the ability to track frequent flier miles, and so much more. Don't want to enter things in manually? Not a problem. TripIt gives you an email address to forward all your plans to and it'll auto-fill and populate everything for you. It really doesn't get any simpler than this for frequent travelers.
Once you've planned a trip, whether it's a vacation or a business trip, you're obviously going to have to pack at some point. All of us have always had that moment where we forget something last minute. Packing Pro can help you prevent that by giving you the option to organize your trip way before hand by creating lists of what you need to bring and in what order. Beyond that, Packing Pro also has full iCloud sync support which means your travel list is always with you, regardless what device you're on.
AirPorts by Travel Nerd
Airports are always cause for stress and confusion, especially large ones. If you get nervous about making flights and being sure you're where you need to be at the right time, AirPorts by Travel Nerd is the app for you. Not only can you enter in flight information in order to check statuses, you can also view full layouts of many major airports around the world. This means you'll not only know where terminals are but where bathrooms and other amenities such as WiFi hotspots are as well.
It's a great app for infrequent travels to business users looking for a place to plug in and recharge.
Travel Channel Layover Guide
There's nothing worse than having a ridiculously long layover or dealing with a canceled flight, especially if you're on vacation. Instead of sitting in a hotel or wandering around an airport, Travel Channel's Layover Guide can help cure boredom and irritation by giving you lots of local spots to hang out at that you may have never decided to visit. Everything from breweries to pubs to five start dining and local attractions.
Layover Guide specializes in helping you find the things that locals treasure, not your typical tourist attractions, even though there are some of those included. You can also become more familiar with an area's musical culture and download music from those countries directly via iTunes links provided to you. Whether you just want to know more about the area you're traveling to or simply want a better experience when traveling in general, you can't go wrong with Layover Guide.
Fodor's City Guides
If you're traveling abroad and want to make sure you don't miss anything you should be seeing, Fodor's City Guides is a great way to check out the culture around you. Not only can you read up on popular landmarks and attractions, the imagery to go with them is gorgeous. And who doesn't like looking at amazing photos?
Fodor's City Guides has lots of information on the usual suspects you'd expect with everything from London, Rome, Paris, New York, Barcelona, and more. If any of these places are ones you'll be visiting for the first time this summer or on a future trip, make sure you check out Fodor's City Guides.
If you're traveling in a foreign country where the main language is not your first language, reading things such as traffic and transit signs can become overwhelming and quickly eat up a lot of time. Enter Pixter Scanner for iPhone. This little gem of an app can snap a photo of any text you'd like and then translate it for you to any given language. Just choose the language the text is written in and what language you'd like it to translate to.
I've tried a lot of text translators and Pixter is by far one of the fastest and most accurate. The fact that it pulls from images instead of re-entering text just makes it that much more awesome.
Not everyone likes to stay in hotels when they're on vacation. Renting a house or finding a condo can be a task if you don't know where to look, though. Dwellable can you help you with that task by aggregating a huge list of properties for rent near many popular vacation destinations including Hawaii, Vail, Orlando, Palm Springs, and more.
Many of the listings on Dwellable will also have reservation calendars showing when properties are available along with contact information. This way you know while looking whether or not something is available the dates you need to travel. If hotels aren't your thing and you're traveling to one of the spots Dwellable supports, make sure to check out what properties are available. You may just be surprised how many you'll find.
If you're planning a last minute trip, or decided to extend a current one, Hotel Tonight does exactly what it sounds like it would do. It can find you a great deal on a hotel, tonight. Featuring a list of over 80 destinations in 12 countries, Hotel Tonight can provide you deals that you can't get anywhere else. In most cases, you can even book for the night all the way until 2am.
Not only will you find great deals with Hotel Tonight, you'll also enjoy the amazing interface and design that comes with it. So whether you're in a bind and need a room fast or want to extend a stay somewhere you're already visiting, make sure to check out what's available on Hotel Tonight before booking.
Do you have any killer apps that you've either used to plan trips or while you're away? Don't be shy, let us know what they are in the comments!