TripList – the packing and to-do list for travellers
Cost: Free Platform: iOs Developer: Enabled Apps
You’re just about to check your suitcase in when you break out in a cold sweat. Did you pack your charger? Will you have to survive a week without your phone and tablet?
Fear not; if you’ve used TripList you can rest assured you have everything you need, and the evidence is in your hand, rather than you having to attempt to wrestle your suitcase back off check-in to burrow through two weeks’ worth of underwear.
Made by small software company Enabled Apps, TripList helps you create themed packing lists, whether for business, pleasure or camping, and can even suggest items from a set of categorised lists.
The company also makes Airport Ace to help you navigate your way round terminals, check departure times, find resultants and other amenities, find out the weather at your destination and see if your flight is delayed. If it is, you might want to check some of these other apps.
Jet Lag App
Cost: £1.99 Platform: iOs Developer: OZOMedia
When you’re travelling across numerous time zones, jetlag risks knocking your body clock out of whack for days, making you sleepy and hungry at odd times.
OZOMedia’s solution is to start adjusting your sleep pattern before you leave, perfect for honing your napping skills while waiting to be called to your gate.
To use Jet Lag App, enter some details about your trip and travel times and it will deliver personalised advice to your phone.
The Jet Lag App lets you export reminders to your phone’s calendar, setting alarms for the best time to wake up, get sunshine, sit in the dark, change the time on your watch and take sleep aids like melatonin.
Though as most people have trouble even waking up when their alarm goes off, what success they’d have responding to quite so many demands remains to be seen.
Cost: Free Platform: iOs; Android Developer: TripAdvisor
Confused when faced with that drawing of an aircraft as to where the best seat is? Is the view out of the window worth making apologies before every bathroom trip? Want a little extra legroom but worried you won’t be able to keep your carry-on handy?
TripAdvisor to the rescue, with this neat app that tells you all you need to know before you commit to a seat in front of a hyperactive eight year old with a penchant for kicking the seat in front.
With access to over 700 seat maps from 100 airlines, the app lets you touch a seat that takes your fancy to see details like the class of travel, how far the seat reclines and access to extras like a personal TV or power point.
But you don’t need to take the airline’s word for it. Seatguru offers advice and insight from 45,000 passenger reviews, including seat reviews and photos, and you can add your own submission to the community.
While Seatguru also offers a cheap airfare finder, making sure you get the best possible seat for your flight is without doubt its unique selling point.
Virgin Atlantic Google Glass app
Cost: Free Platform: N/A Developer: Virgin Atlantic/SITA
Sorry, this isn’t one you can download yourself, but it could transform your flight experience. Though if you found Minority Report a bit too prescient, you may want to stay out of the airline’s Upper Class Wing at Heathrow’s Terminal 3.
As part of a trial, Virgin Atlantic concierge staff are wearing Google Glass headsets, so from the minute you step out of your Virgin limousine they will know your name, destination and dietary requirements and will be able to begin the check-in process for you.
Developed alongside air-transport specialist SITA, Virgin’s Google Glass app will also enable staff to have your latest flight information, weather and local events at your destination to hand, and translate any foreign language information.
The Google Glass trial began in February for a four-week pilot scheme. Once the results are in, Virgin Atlantic will evaluate the benefits to consumers and the business and consider a future wider roll-out.
CPH Airport app
Cost: Free Platform: iOs; Android Developer: Copenhagen Airport
If you’ve ever had a holiday ruined by desperately attempting to run from one end to the other of a particularly poorly laid-out and signposted airport to catch a connecting flight (I’m looking at you, Chicago O’Hare) you might want to consider a route via Copenhagen Airport.
The airport has recently released a new wayfinding app that lets you visualise your route from, say, the car park to a café then on to your gate, either before you leave home to plan your route, or on the hoof to find your bearings once you arrive.
Like a slick mini Google Street View, you can click metre-by-metre through 360 degree photo panoramas of all passenger areas. And when you’re in the airport, free WiFi access points will pinpoint your exact location.
Thought to be the first of its kind, the app is available in Danish and English, with a Swedish version under development. Updates are planned several times a year to keep up to date with new shops opening.
Heathrow Airport Guide
Cost: Free Platform: iOs; Android; BlackBerry; Windows Developer: Copenhagen Airport
By contrast with Copenhagen’s shiny new offering, the Heathrow Airport Guide app is relatively venerable, dating back to 2009 when smartphones were first on the ascent.
Over one million passengers have downloaded the app to aid their journey through the world’s third busiest airport, and improvements based on user feedback have been incorporated in each release.
The app’s most popular features are the flight alert facility, further information around the gate and baggage reclaim areas, reserve and collect shopping and interactive terminal maps.
In the near future, Heathrow intends to release a whole new version which will incorporate real time transport information, pre-bookable restaurants, personal shopper, an integrated customer loyalty scheme and evouchers.
It will also offer geolocation, augmented reality and ibeacon indoor positioning features as part of what Heathrow calls a vastly improved, personalised experience, all in the palm of your hand.
BringFido – Pet Friendly Hotels
Cost: Free Platform: iOs Developer: Kendall Media
While pet passports have made international travel with your pooch easier, once you’ve flown with your furry friend finding a dog-friendly haven can be a nightmare
Enter BringFido, the app spin-off of the website of the same name, to help you find and book the best hotels, attractions, and restaurants that welcome pets, and it even comes with a best hotel rate guarantee.
If you’re flying within the UK, try Dog Friendly by Fetch Digital, which suggests pet-tolerant hotels, beaches, pubs, vets, groomers, trainers, walkers and kennels near where you’re staying.
Because smartphones are only man’s second best friend.
Cost: £1.99 – £2.99 Platform: iOs; Android; Symbian; Facebook Developer: iQapps
You know that feeling when a friend suddenly posts random photos of palm trees on Facebook and you wonder if they’re on holiday or just wishing they were? Or you Instagram a trip of your own and when you get back you can’t remember what river you were at when you rode that elephant?
Fear not, Tripjournal lets you curate all the details of your travels as you go like a modern day Stanley and Livingstone and share them with friends and family.
Tripjournal uses GPS to track the route you took and add geo-tagging to photos and videos. While everything’s saved at high resolution, you can choose a lower resolution to share without eating into your WiFi allowance.
And while a picture is worth a thousand words, you can write notes in your journal, add comments to photos and videos and share the lot over Facebook, Flickr, Picasa, YouTube, and Twitter.
The postcard isn’t dead, it’s just gone digital.
Cost: Free to £1.49 Platform: iOs; Android Developer: Pocket Gems Publishing
Having suffered the humiliation of a burly security officer rifling through your smalls in baggage screening, why not chill out with a game that offers a real “if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em” attitude?
Airport Scanner lets you join the notoriously authoritarian US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) operating a baggage X-Ray scanner at five of America’s busiest airports.
You have to identify contraband from relatively innocent items like water bottles and scissors to bomb making equipment and weapons so your brawny TSA colleagues can cart off malefactors.
But you have to be quick; wait too long to and passengers will miss their flights and riot!
With 21 missions increasing in difficulty and ample of power-ups to discover, there’s plenty to distract you while waiting for your gate to be called.
Cost: £1.00 Platform: Android Developer: DGML
Finally, if your flight is delayed or cancelled, you’re bumped from an overbooked flight, snowed in or there’s a hitch in the supply of lemon-soaked paper napkins, you’re going to want to complain about it.
But even your best Malcolm Tucker-inspired invective will be wasted unless you can curse in the local lingo, and that’s where Swearport comes in.
DGML’s inspired creation lets you choose a language, click on the rudeness you’d like to deliver and the app plays a high quality audio recording of a native speaker saying your chosen swear.
If you’re so incensed you couldn’t possibly interact with a touchscreen to get your message across, fear not; Swearport offers a random function where you only have to shake your device to deliver an indiscriminate curse phrase.
It’s educational too. For each of the 1000+ clips in over 70 languages — it offers everything from French, German and Italian, through Latvian, Hebrew and Korean, to Amharic, Kannada and Tshiluba — Swearport will tell you the meaning, English equivalent and awards points out of five to indicate just how rude it is. That’s something you’d never get from your average your phrase book.