Travel ‘App’ily

travelWith the holiday season going on, you might have already chalked out your travel plans. Or maybe, it’s an international trip for you this year. Or you could still be checking out destinations to land an ideal fix. Either way, here are some that could ease your travel woes so that you can have an enjoyable trip

ORGANISE YOUR TRAVEL PLANS

Organise all your bookings – be it flight details, hotel bookings or car rentals – with apps like TripIt, so you don’t have to to look for that printout, flip through messages or remember an array of details. Whether you use an -based phone or , just link the app with your email account and it will pick up all the confirmation emails to build an itinerary for you. Or you can send these emails to a TripIt ID to get a detailed outline, along with directions, maps and weather info, which can also be accessed offline.

The app is free, with ads; for ad-free version, TripIt charges Rs 60. The Pro version, available for Rs 3,000 a year, also gives you real time flight alerts and finds alternate flights, in case of delays or cancellations.

You can also use WorldMate, which offers similar services like TripIt, or dedicated apps like FlightAware to track your flight status.

LANGUAGE APPS

No matter where you are, not knowing the local language can be a big handicap. It will also rob you of a chance to interact with the locals and learn about their customs and traditions. The Google Translate app, which works with 80 languages including Tamil, Telugu, etc, can translate anything through speech, text or picture. The more dedicated people can learn the basics of a language using DuoLingo before their trip.

CURRENCY APPS

No travel can be complete without loosening the purse string and indulging in some shopping. Maybe you want to pick up that bag or gizmo but don’t know how much it will cost in rupees. Leave the math to Xe Currency, which updates rates real time and also saves the last updated currency value, so you can access it offline. The app works with a variety of currencies, including Bitcoin. It can also save you from being ripped off while changing currencies. Xe Currency works across platforms and you can get the Pro version for Rs 120 if you want to keep track of larger number of currencies.

You can also opt for the Oanda currency convertor app, which offers buy and sell rates, too.

EXPLORE PLACES

During your journey, you might come across something – an old building or a monument – about which you have no idea and would like to get some information. You might also want to know good restaurants in the nearby area. Instead of going through apps individually for listings about restaurants, hotels or places to see, use WikiTude. An augmented reality app, it will act as your tourist guide. By using your camera and GPS, WikiTude will give you an array of user-generated information as well as recommendations from TripAdvisor.com, Hotels.com and social networking sites such as Twitter, among others.

In a similar vein, apps like CamFind and Google Goggles will also provide you information about a place or object once you click a picture. You can opt for these atleast till you lay your hands on that Google Glass.

While these apps work on multiple platforms, they need GPS and internet connectivity to work. So, if you are doubtful of connectivity where you are visiting, you could download guides from TripAdvisor, Lonely Planet and other travel sites for offline use.

Travel is supposed to be your time away from any work, so let these apps do the work for you while you make the most of your holiday.

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