I am currently on vacation with my family in Maui and this has given me a great chance to try out some of the wide range of travel apps that are available with the iPhone. Paradoxically all holidays have stressful parts, for example getting good transport from the airport and finding things to do once you’ve arrived where you’re staying. Here is a brief description of how iPhone apps have helped things flow more smoothly.
I found my flight with the ‘search one and done’ service provided by Kayak. Kayak is essentially a price comparison site, but on a vast scale. Hundreds of airlines are compared and there is no time consuming sign up needed. Once I’d arrived in Maui I used Groundlink to book a car from the airport to where I was staying. Far from worrying about the driver being late, I could track him via iPhone up to his arrival. I rented an awesome condo on the beach with Airbnb, which is a site that allows you to rent properties from locals in 176 countries. Once we’d arrived I found things to do through a combination of Wikihood and Goby. While these are both location specific iPhone apps, they cater to different niches. Wikihood is more concerned with historical information and cultural events occurring nearby. Goby is more centered on fun or family friendly activities. Using Goby I managed to find us a traditional Luau. For fun I also found a local marathon via active.com and entered. I found restaurants using Yelp, and the rating system helped immensely. I was able to drill down to specific dish reccomendations with the app from Foodspotting. Even in more local places I was able to translate menus to English with the Wordlens app. The free wifi finder from Jwire made it easy and fast to get online. On my way home after, I turned up the heating at my house with Intwine and turned on the lights via Mobilinc.
Is This For Everyone?
Yes. On holiday you are paying by the hour and you want to make the most of every moment away. Most of the apps I have mentioned above will save you time, and services like Kayak will save you money. Wikihood and Goby are the essence of less doing. No more trailing around looking for tourist information, just a glance at your handset.