My Five Favorite Travel Apps

Do you depend on your smartphone for everything you do?  It seems that the world of information that we have at our fingertips has now reached everyone and there is an app for most anything we want to do.  Travel is no exception and there are a whole slew of applications that can make your planning and traveling easier.  Here is a list of some of my personal favorites.

1.  Yelp-  Yelp provides a wide range of services, including information about restaurants, banks, gas stations, drug stores, entertainment and much more.  The map view feature of Yelp is extremely helpful as it helps you locate the type of establishment you’re looking for that is the closest location.  It also has a unique Monocle feature.  When you hold your phone up and move it around, the names of businesses show up on your screen superimposed on the landscape.  This app is by far one of the most useful you will find.

2.  Trip Advisor- You’ve probably used this one for years on your desktop, but now the mobile version gives you access to thousands of reviews wherever you are.  If you frequently stay in hotels, you will find the content of this app to be invaluable.

3.  Car Finder- Who hasn’t come back from a long trip or even a trip inside the mall and couldn’t locate their car?  You walk up and down the aisles looking foolish as you search for your car.  Now there’s an app that uses the camera and compass built into your phone to pinpoint the exact location of your car.  All you have to do is make a picture of your car and your phone automatically assigns it a location.  This location will show up on a map when you return to your car.

4.  Trip It-  Trip It was the 1st itinerary tracking app and is considered the best.  It does many different things, but the main reason to use it is to have your entire itinerary and contact information in one place.  You can put in flights, hotel reservations, rental cars, and even restaurant reservations.  They will be easily accessible and can be shared with others.  This particular app is always adding new features, however some of these features are not available unless you upgrade to TripIt Pro, which costs $49 a year.  You may love this app enough to justify the expense.  If not, a good replacement is TripDeck.  However, this app is only available on IPhone.

5.  Urban Spoon- This restaurant app looks a lot like a slot machine!  Restaurant location is on one wheel, a type of food on the next, and price in the third wheel.  You use the wheels to make customized choices.  The app also includes a “Like It” feature.  This is a quick way to find out what others think of the restaurant instead of reading all the reviews.

There are many more apps out there that are great.  Try them out and see which ones become the most useful to you.  Clearly, these apps help us make our trips much easier.  Why not take advantage of them?


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