Editors' Picks: Travel Apps
See our favorites for missing downtown construction, finding nearby rock climbing and taking interactive 3D panoramas -- all with the just the tap of your finger.
Show everyone back home just how hip and well-traveled you are with the Instagram photo app. Load the app's new photo map and see your photos along with those of your friends arranged by location. With the filters and blur effects, you don't have to be a great photographer to capture your travel memories. Check out StickyGram.com, as well, to make your artsy photos into memorable magnets, and relive your vacation every time you get a glass of milk.
Kayak’s motto is “search one and done,” and they mean it. The app aggregates information from hundreds of travel sites so you can rest assured that you are getting the best deals available. Compare flight info, hotels and car rentals all with the touch of a few buttons. When it’s time for your trip, use their flight tracker and even get airport info powered by our friends at GateGuru. A word of warning: it’s so easy to whip out your iPhone and book a trip that late-night “what if” conversations might turn into real-life vacations … to the detriment of your bank account.
Kill time while at the airport without spending all your money on music downloads or using all of your iPhone's precious memory. With a monthly subscription, get access to every song you could ever want — from brand-new hit singles to those oldie-but-goodies — sans ads. But what do you do when you're up in the air without a 3G or wi-fi connection? Simply save your favorite playlists for off-line use while still on the ground and you're all set to go!
The days of regrettable meals are over. Happen to stroll by a restaurant with a delicious-looking menu in the window? There’s no excuse not to whip out that shiny new iPhone and look it up on Yelp. Didn’t get the best reviews? Use the “nearby” feature to find a place that has a few more stars by its name. Just remember, there will always be a few haters – don’t let one bad review spoil the stellar ones.
If you’re not close to a taxi stand, the Rocket Taxi app is very useful. It’s a location-based app that provides users with phone numbers to taxi cab companies nearby. This app is definitely helpful when you’re stranded or nowhere near public transportation. The 5-star rating system for each cab company is also helps you narrow down your choice.
For a free option, nothing beats Pandora for personalized radio on the road. Download the app to your iPhone, get a sound dock, and start playing -- anything you like. Pandora has a genius for selecting popular favorites along with lesser known gems. So you feel like you’re getting what you love, along with exciting music discoveries. Take turns with your buddies indulging in various music playlists, everyone in the car will be happy with this app.
Layover Guide With Anthony Bourdain
Have a layover pending and not sure what to do with your whole 6+ hours of free time? Never fear. The Layover App has you covered in cities like Amsterdam, London, Los Angeles, Miami, Montreal, New York, Rome, San Francisco, Singapore, Hong Kong and more cities are on the way! Choose from restaurants, transportation and activities handpicked by Anthony Bourdain, former New York City chef, world-traveler and host of The Layover and No Reservations. Yes, we're patting ourselves on the back here.
For the climber or adventurer in all of us, this app let's you find climbing areas near your location, other nearby POIs and details provided by locals.
Food Network On the Road
Love diners, drive-ins and dives? Download this road-trip-ready app and it will use GPS to find nearby Food Network recommendations like where Guy Fieri ate, what Bobby Flay ordered and more. Just search (by city, chef, show, cuisine), get the address (and directions), and go!
UrbanDaddy is the perfect app if you’re indecisive planning cocktails with co-workers, finding the best places to shop or choosing where to dine on a first date. Just select the day, time, and who you’re with and the app narrows down your choices on where you should eat, shop, grab a few beers and more. It’s ideal for business travelers or people who are always on the go.
Take your travel photos to the next level with this great photo app that creates interactive 3D panoramas you can share with your friends via Facebook and Twitter.
Stuck on a long layover and can’t stomach another stale microwaved sandwich at the airport? Heard your flight was delayed … 5 hours? We've all been there. GateGuru helps you find the best place to grab a meal, raise your spirits (i.e. best bars) and shop for souvenirs or gifts. So suddenly that long layover becomes much more manageable and even productive.
Stuck in traffic? No problem! The INRIX traffic app will lead you in the right direction. Whether you're trying to avoid an accident, construction work or a parade that just happens to be going by, open this up-to-the-minute app and save yourself some time and frustration.
Uber can be a lifesaver when there are no taxis in sight. Billing themselves as "everyone's private driver," just type in an address and city and a shiny black car is on its way. And don't worry about stopping at an ATM, Uber automatically charges your credit card and emails you a receipt. How's that for convenient?
Who says you can't see beyond the 5-day, weekend or 10-day forecasts? With the wt360 Pro app you can see day-by-day weather up to a year in advance for some reassurance when you're booking your next vacation. Going away next week? You can also see hour-by-hour forecasts for millions of locations around the world.