Friday, December 7th, 2012

Travel apps! We have all heard of them, however knowing where to start in deciding which ones are for you and which ones aren’t can be mind boggling.

You’re on the road trying to find modes of transport, places to stay, good places to eat, meet fellow travellers and so much more; well travel apps make all of these things so much simpler. It also makes keeping in touch with friends and family, when on the road, as easy as enjoying a cold beer in the sun.

Travel apps give you the chance to share experiences, pictures, videos and key moments in an instant. Not to mention a free way to chat either through voice, video call or instant messages. Long gone are the days of massive phone bills when you leave to go on holidays or go travelling. The world is a small place and it can be made smaller by knowing what apps are out there.

What do I need an app?

Technology is moving fast; we have come a long way from the good old nokia 3210 and wasting endless hours playing snake. People all over the world are using smart phones, some people without even knowing. When choosing a new phone, it’s hard to buy one which isn’t a smartphone and the reason for this is convenience. People want a device which is portable and personal, they can phone, text, use social media, access emails, check the sports, listen to music, take and share photos, check the weather and keep up to date with the news. Smart phones do all of these through the use of apps. Not got a smart phone and don’t want to buy a new phone, maybe a tablet is what you’re after. Same portable device which offers the same accessibility to apps, removing the bulk from your life especially when travelling around the world with your bag on your back is a must!

So what apps are out there?

Social Networking apps - Facebook, Twitter, instagram, Four square, Flickr…..

It’s annoying when you’re sitting at your desk at work and a friend of yours is posting pictures of them lying on a beach in Thailand. Do not worry, when it is your opportunity to travel you definitely want to be able to post and make all of your friends jealous. Facebook is a free app which allows you to keep in touch through updates and pictures. A great hint is setting up a private group with your nearest and dearest so you can post freely without all of your friends seeing your business. Yes we all have friends on facebook that we can’t bring ourselves to delete! So this way you can keep in touch and only share certain memories with everyone, keeping the more intimate ones for your closest friends and family. All of the travel apps discussed on this blog are compatable with the following smart devices- android phones, iphones, ipads, I touch, windows phones and tablets.


Instagram allows you to take and share photos through social media. Instagram is a photo app, it allows you to take pictures and amend them using various different photo shop techniques to make them look slick, smart and artistic. With several digital filters, you can amend your photos to a style that suits you – 70’s flair, black & white and many more. Before you know it you will be taking professional looking pictures of the amazing sights you will see along your adventure. .

The Instagram network is growing with over 80 million users, PLUS it allows you to share with all your friends on a choice of all the top social sites, notably Facebook and Twitter.


Twitter is another great app to download when going travelling. It’s a great way to upload updates, pictures and also to meet other backpackers or tweet to people who have already been to the places you’re visiting. The best thing for any traveller to do when backpacking is speak to as many people as possible to find out the do’s and don’ts of an area. Twitter is full of people currently on route around the world who are eager to share experience and help out another backpacker in need. Whether you’re looking for inspiration in Mexico, India or Thailand, a simple tweet will open a world of knowledge and advice from like-minded back backers.


Time is gold when you are travelling. You won’t want to waste time walking around with your heavy backpack in the heat looking for places to stay. Trip advisor is a free app and will be a bible for the budget back packer. It opens a world of likeminded back packers sharing experience. Plan and have the perfect trip with access to real traveller reviews, opinions, photos, maps, and forums that can answer even the most specific questions when you’re on the go. TripAdvisor is the world’s most trusted travel site with over 45 million reviews and opinions by travellers like you. Travelling light is also a necessity for a back packer, hauling around travel guide books is the last thing you want. This app has all the to date information at your fingertips. And if you’ve ever fancied yourself as a travel writer, TripAdvisor for iPhone is as good a place to start as any…


One of the hardest parts about going travelling is leaving behind all your favourite people, however, with the advancements of Skype it makes communicating a whole lot simpler. Skype is like a magical tool that brings friends, families and lovers together regardless of time zones or countries. With Skype staying in touch couldn’t be easier. It costs absolutely nothing to download the app, it is a great way of importing or finding the contacts you want. Skype online instant messaging is free and allows you to send files; great for sharing photos and videos of backpacking experiences. The app also offers free calls, ensuring a cost effective method to converse. The same concept is behind video calls, allowing users to feel as though they are communicating face to face with the recipient; this is particularly useful for a close to real-life conversation.

What is your favourite app to use when you are travelling? Let us know why!


Contact Profile


Skype is a software-based communications platform that offers high-quality, easy-to-use tools for both consumers and businesses to communicate and collaborate globally through voice, video and text conversations. Founded in 2003 and based in Luxembourg, our mission is to be the communications platform of choice around the world. We enable users with virtually any Internet-connected device to communicate with each other by voice, video and instant message for free, or make low cost voice calls to fixed or mobile numbers virtually anywhere in the world. We had 124 million average monthly connected users for the three months ended June 30, 2010 and our users placed 95 billion calling minutes over Skype in the first half of 2010, approximately 40% of which were video. Skype can be downloaded onto computers, mobile phones and other connected devices for free at Access to a broadband Internet connection is required. Skype is not a replacement for traditional telephone service and cannot be used for emergency calling. Skype Connect is meant to complement existing traditional telephone services used with a corporate PBX, not as a stand-alone solution. Skype Connect users need to ensure all calls to emergency services are terminated through traditional telephone services. Skype, associated trademarks and logos and the “S” symbol are trademarks of Skype Limited.
Paul Monteath
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