The iPhone is quickly becoming an indispensable travel tool, replacing the need to carry several gadgets every time you go on a trip. On the Travel Gear Blog we’re going to outline some of the ways you can turn your iPhone into the ideal piece of travel gear.
If your trip is any more complicated than one round-trip flight and one hotel stay, you may have gotten into the habit of carrying a small stack of printed-off confirmation emails or itineraries whenever you travel. Not only does the iPhone make that unnecessary, the travel organizer apps listed below make organizing your next trip so easy and elegant you’ll wonder how you ever managed without them.
Travel Organization Apps for the iPhone
Trip Journal is one of the most popular travel organization apps out there, partly because it does so much and partly because it looks so good doing it. With this app you can take photos and video (which are geo-tagged with your location), add comments to both photos and video, jot down notes along the way, keep track of all the various aspects of your trip (flights, hotels, etc.), look up locations and get real-time tracking on a map, and share whatever trip details you like via Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Flickr, and more.
Instead of opening up a map of your destination that’s crowded with all the places the guide’s writers think you should know about, wouldn’t it be handy to open up a map that’s populated with only the places you knew you wanted to see? With the TripDoc app, that’s what you get. You add places – restaurants you want to try, attractions you want to see, shops you want to check out, the hotel you’re staying in – and those are the only places that are on the map. It’s clean, simple, incredibly easy to use, and much easier to keep track of than scribbling notes in the margin of a guidebook. There’s a free version so you can test it out, but it only lets you add five places. The full version is on sale right now because the app is new.
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The TripCase app has the benefit of being free, although it isn’t quite as multi-functional (or pretty) as some of the other paid apps listed here. With TripCase, however, you can track your itinerary (and flights), see listings for nearby hotels, get weather reports, and share trip details (including photos and notes) with friends and family.
TripIt is one of those must-have iPhone apps for travelers, because it consolidates all those confirmation emails into well-organized trips. It’s free to join TripIt, and the app is free, so you have almost no excuse for using it. It’s ideally suited to people who fly, rent cars, and stay in hotels frequently, since those are the activities where you’re going to get all those confirmation emails, but you can use TripIt to organize just about any kind of trip – you’ll just be inputting more information manually.
The Travel Diary app is mainly used to help you organize the photos you take on your trip, but it does more than just store pictures. With this app every picture you take (from within the app) is automatically tagged with the time as well as the GPS location where you took it, and with the newest version you can record audio notes to go with each photo as well. Audio notes can also be recorded on their own, so you can end up with an audio-visual diary of your trip. And if you want to share en route, you can export photos and audio comments to Facebook from within the app.
Trip Organizer is a great tool to help you get ready for your trip. With a database of more than 150 countries, the app helps you keep track of all the things you need to do before you leave – what shots are required and recommended, what official documents you’ll need, what you need to arrange beforehand, etc. And as you check things off your pre-trip to-do list, the app’s status bar moves along showing you just how much you’ve done (and how much you have left!). While this app may not be as critical for someone on a simple two-week trip to Europe, it could be invaluable for a long-term traveler.
GlobeJot – Travel Organizer & Trip Planner
This app lets you throw all the things you’d like to do during your trip into a master list, and then sorts them by things like the priority you’ve assigned to it or the cost to help you figure out which things you have the time and money for. You can check things off as “done” or “skipped” to keep track of them, and the dashboard is customizable so you see just what you want to see. GlobeJot works with TripIt and the iPhone’s Maps application, so it’s easy to import lots of travel information and look up addresses and directions with a tap of your finger.