* This is a post in a series of travel tips that I’ll be sharing every once in a while! You can read previous posts below:
- Reverse Culture Shock
- Why You Should Invest in a Backpack
- Experiencing Hostel Life
-Traveling on a Schedule (The Good Kind!)
For those of you who have an iPhone like I do, you’ll know that it’s kind of revolutionary to have with you when you’re away from home, for many reasons. I’ve traveled with a mini laptop, a journal, a camera, and iPod, and simple pen & paper, but my iPhone? By far the most convenient tool everywhere I go. Not only does it stay with me all the time, allow me to connect to WiFi networks across the globe, and offer me the comforts of home through social media, but it’s becoming more and more a tool that travelers can depend on for a multitude of other things.
Here are some iPhone apps that I’ve come to know and love, and recommend you download before you jet off to your next travel destination.
There are a lot of popular websites to book hotels/hostels/planes out there, but very few translate to a good, convenient, easy to navigate iPhone app. These are by far the three websites I’ve used most often book hotels and flights, and I always feel like I really get my money’s worth. I checked out all of them on iPhone and wouldn’t be able to choose one more than the other. They’re all very user friendly and offer quick options. If you’re traveling and in need of booking options at the last minute, these are great options to choose from!
If you have an iPhone and you’re not using IG, you’re seriously missing out. I’m probably not teaching many of you something new with that one, but in case I am, it is by far my favorite thing to use while I’m traveling. I love to take photos, and with IG you can add really great effects that make the colors stand out.
Postagram is amazing and goes hand-in-hand with IG. If you want to make postcards for your friends & family back home without the hassle of buying them, writing them AND sending them by mail in a faraway country, this app is perfect for you. It takes care of EVERYTHING, all you have to do is choose your favorite Instagram photo, write a message, and enter a mailing address. Your first FIVE postcards are free, and the images are pop-out, so whoever you send them to can stick it somewhere nearby if they feel like it! I sent myself a postcard so I could see what it looks like, and it’s amazing. I fully plan on using this in the future more often.
This is a new find for me, but I’m already in love with TripIt. Not only can you set up countdowns for your upcoming trips, you can forward all your booking confirmations to a special address that they give your account, and they automatically sort everything into each of your itineraries so you can have all your paperwork in your back pocket. You can also upload maps, and add any kind of plans you would like so you don’t forget to do something while you’re away. It’s super user friendly, very easy to navigate, and extremely quick to set up all that you need!
Oh My God you guys, this app is intense. You can look up and download guides to virtually every city you can think of. It offers you the download option so you can keep all of your city guides on your phone, so you don’t have to worry about being in a WiFi zone to use it. Additionally, there is a tour guide option- stick some earphones in, pick a city, pick a tourist attraction in the app, and the tour guide takes care of everything for you! Many of the options in this app are free of charge, but the guided tours come at a cost.
If you’re not entirely sold on some new variety of guidebook, the Lonely Planet app is just as pretty and convenient as their paper guides. They’re my go-to guides for virtually everything (I have a bunch on my shelf!) but I think the iPhone version is just as useful if you don’t want to lug around the actual books when you’re actually traveling. Although you have to pay for the guides, they’re at a much cheaper price than in store, and you know with Lonely Planet you’ll be getting your money’s worth!
While you’re still at home (or hooked up to a WiFi network), take advantage of this app to browse YouTube and download videos directly to your iPhone. YT is known for sucking up battery and your 3G network (if you’re connected), but this free app allows you to download any 15 YouTube videos you want, free of charge, to watch over and over again. If you don’t want to travel with your iPad, computer, DVD’s, etc, this is an easy solution. Just download, delete, and download again anything you’d like to watch on planes, trains, buses etc. You can buy the full version of the app as well, which allows you unlimited downloads!
Everyone has the apps that they can’t live without, and I know there are a ton more options that make travel (and really, just everyday life) much easier. What are your must-have apps, for travel and even just for your everyday use?!