Best iPhone travel apps

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iPhone, iPod touch or laptop?

Are iPhones good for travel? And if they are what are the best iphone apps for travellers? Craig, Linda and Kev from Winging it Round the World talk tech in this episode of the Indie Travel Podcast.

A laptop is not the best travel companion: it’s big, heavy and valuable. You don’t want to be worried about damage or theft while you’re exploring the forests of South East Asia or the stormy streets of Iceland. You want to be connected but not burdened by the technology you travel with. Kev is about to set off on a round-the-world trip with his partner Lucy and they’ve decided to downsize to a iPod touch.

At first they considered an iPhone, but data rates are expensive to start with and global roaming rates would bankrupt anyone. They’ve passed up the 3G connection and the GPS satellite navigation for the cheaper iPod Touch and its wifi internet connection. Both have a wide touchscreen and access to the iTunes application store. In his first podcast, Kev talks about his top ten applications for travellers and, here, we talk about the top three.

Top iPhone apps for Travellers

Traverter

A brilliant conversion programme which includes things like clothing sizes and telephone numbers along with normal things like currency and distances.

WorldNomads language phrasebooks

Free, downloadable language guides in a variety of languages. As well as the iPod versions, you can download mp3 versions of the guides from Indie Travel Podcast.

Sehat Rosny Guides

Very cheap, interactive travel guides which replace traditional paper guidebooks. You get free, lifetime updates for each location you buy.

You can find Kev and Lucy at Winging it Round the World or their podcast in iTunes. You can get a free subscription there and sign up for the Indie Travel Podcast on iTunes too.

What do you think about travellers, laptops and smart phones? What iPhone applications would you recommend for Kev and Lucy as they set out on a round the world trip? Let us know in the comments.

Best iPhone Travel Apps is sponsored by WorldNomads.com.

WorldNomads.com provides great value global travel insurance. You can buy, extend and claim online, even if already travelling. All World Nomads get free travel blogs, safety advice and language guides for your iPod. You can also support a Footprints community development project when you purchase online. WorldNomads.com – keep travelling safely.

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19 Responses to “Best iPhone travel apps”

  1. JessieV March 27, 2009 at 10:05 pm #

    too cool, craig! i don’t have an iphone but will forward this onto people who do. thanks!

  2. Kat Calvin March 27, 2009 at 10:22 pm #

    I don’t have an iPhone yet but the more I read about these apps, the more I want to get one before my next big trip! Laptops are just too much to carry around!

  3. Emzyne March 28, 2009 at 4:13 am #

    You forgot Qype Radar; location-aware app with access to 1million reviews of places in Europe:

    http://www.qype.co.uk/qype-radar

  4. Steven Roll March 29, 2009 at 9:47 am #

    One of my favorite iphone apps is the Lonely Planet’s Spanish Phrasebook. It’s divided into several practical sections such as dining, health, and shopping. It also has an audio component to help you get the pronunciation right.

  5. Tamra March 31, 2009 at 6:56 am #

    this application sealed the deal for me http://www.ipodrepublic.com/ipod-touch/welcome-skype-to-the-ipod-touch-with-fring/2008/10/05/ maybe a http://store.apple-touch.com/content/accessories/5-58–3391.htm as well for power backup in remote sunny places.

  6. Gary March 30, 2009 at 10:30 pm #

    My iPod Touch is the best travel gadget I own.

  7. Jennifer April 22, 2009 at 5:08 am #

    A great new iphone app is out there for travelers and vacationers! It’s called Snapshot Postcard. You just snap a picture with your iphone, select a contact, add your text, and send. Your contact receives a real postcard of your picture in the mail just a few days later regardless of where it’s being sent from. It’s cheaper than buying stock postcards and postage (often international postage). The turn around time is amazing and the quality of the photo excellent! I love having a way to touch my friends and family when I’m away and the feedback I’m getting is great!

  8. Craig and Linda April 22, 2009 at 8:55 am #

    That does sound cool, but you don’t get stamps and postmarks from the country you’re in … that would put me off. They’re often much cooler than the postcard itself.

  9. Jason May 16, 2009 at 5:36 pm #

    You should definitely take a look at Hostel Hero – find and book hostels and hotels worldwide, looks awesome and it is free! Great demo video on their site too (http://www.hostelhero.com)

  10. soultravelers August 7, 2009 at 3:51 am #

    We have been traveling the world as a family since 2006 on 4 continents, 29 countries & over 100,000 miles ( most overland) and not only do we find the laptop the best, we have 3!! ( And 3 years later they are all working well despite seeing tons of use!).

    It all depends on how you travel and what your needs are.If you LIVE travel as a lifestyle, you really can’t beat macs. We’ve taken ours deep into the Sahara and into rural Turkey, not to mention all the major cities in Europe and most of it’s countryside and across many seas. No problems at all and we use every mode of travel including trains, buses, cargo ships, car, RV, walking, bikes, camels, mass transit, horses etc!

    Sometimes just keeping things simple makes things a LOT easier and can save a bundle. The only way to go for a open ended world tour, is undoubtedly just a good laptop ( or 3)!

  11. Quinn Genzel September 5, 2009 at 1:50 am #

    Another great travel app is PACKING, chosen as one of National Geographic’s best travel apps, and now on sale for only US$0.99. There is also a professional version, called PACKING PRO, which was itself chosen by both American Express and National Geographic as one of their top travel apps. Packing Pro, in addition to the basic packing functions that both apps share, has an Expert customized list generation tool, twice as many sample lists, a larger master catalog, and complete customization control over the look and feel of the device (layout, font & colors). Besides, how can anyone travel without first Packing!

    Packing: http://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewSoftware?id=294710480&mt=8

    Packing Pro: http://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewSoftware?id=312266675&mt=8

  12. Anil November 10, 2009 at 8:54 am #

    I’d add Hotel Pal, Skype, and NetStumble to name a few. There are so many good apps out there for travelers it’s difficult to narrow them down!

  13. Craig November 10, 2009 at 9:08 am #

    Anil, I know the first two, but haven’t heard of net stumble. What’s that and why does it make your list?

  14. Anil November 10, 2009 at 9:13 am #

    NetStumbler picks up wireless networks with hidden SSIDs and there are usually a few at most airports (the airlines use them). It also forces your iPhone to find wireless networks at shorter intervals than the default as well as give you some more details about the wireless network itself.

  15. Craig November 10, 2009 at 9:25 am #

    That sounds great, going to find it now.

  16. Ryan B November 20, 2009 at 4:48 am #

    I highly recommend iDistress as well. It sends out a distress text&email if you are ever in a dangerous situation with your location. It also chooses the local emergency number automatically.

  17. Tom Lasater December 29, 2009 at 2:15 pm #

    Dear Craig and Linda,

    Your readers might be interested to know about LocoTrivia, the world’s first location based trivia game. Just launch LocoTrivia, and you will be asked questions about the world nearby. Want to impress the world with your knowledge ? Add your own Trivia questions to LocoTrivia and get recognized !

  18. Stacy July 23, 2013 at 4:17 am #

    The blog is absolutely fantastic. Lots of great information and inspiration, both of which we all need. Thanks.

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