Part of the allure of an iPad is its portability. It does so much, yet is so much smaller and easier to cart around than a laptop. This makes it an obvious choice for travel. While there are great apps for using it to plan your next getaway or business trip, there are also things to consider when deciding if it really is the right choice for you.
Some of the websites that seem to have taken the place of travel agents in modern society, have created apps to do the same thing for you on the iPad. If you will be heading out on a roadtrip, or otherwise traveling without the need of a rental car, there are some apps out there that will do it all for you.
Expedia offers an app that is perfect for air travelers. It can be used to check flight status and display itineraries, whether arranged on the Expedia website or not. Orbitz has an app to aid in searching for hotels, with a great graphic interface showing location, a picture of the hotel and price. Both will also refer back to the websites via Safari.
TripAdvisor also offers an app to book your travel on the iPad. The app will let you book both hotel and flight, and will even include reviews from the website to help in your decision-making. Also included is a listing with information and reviews on area attractions.
Condé Nast Traveler allows you to put in your preferred cruise destinations, as well as amenities, and it matches you up with cruises that are just right for your wants and needs. It does not show the port of call, but once you find the cruise you want, you’re directed to either call a travel agent or visit a website to finish booking your travel arrangements.
Once you have your travel booked, one thing to keep in mind whether you’re flying or driving is the availability of WiFi vs. High Speed Internet. If your iPad is only WiFi-enabled and doesn’t have 3G, you’ll only be able to use it while you’re in WiFi-enabled areas. You can check to see if an airport has WiFi, and if it’s free or not with AirportAce. This app includes information such as maps, transportation, parking, and amenities for each airport. A free trial version is offered with limited airports. The full version with most major airports can be downloaded for $4.99.
Most major airports have WiFi available, but sometimes you have to pay a one-time service fee to use it. Hotels are sometimes listed as having High Speed Internet and sometimes WiFi. It’s a must to catch the wording of this. High Speed Internet doesn’t always mean it’s wireless, and even if the hotel is listed as having WiFi, you have to make sure it’s available in your room, not just the lobby. If there is no WiFi available where you are traveling, or if you don’t choose to pay for it in the airport, you will either need a 3G-enabled iPad or a computer.
What other iPad apps do you use for your travelling?