For the past couple of months, it’s been planes, trains and automobiles for me with lots of business travel. While I’ve been on the road more than usual lately, for some busy professionals, constant travel is a way of life. Whether you travel every week or every once-in-a-while, here are five great apps for busy business travelers to help start the New Year off right.
Tripit is a great app to help organize your travels in one convenient place. You simply forward your travel confirmation emails to your Tripit account and the app automatically creates a detailed daily itinerary for your trip. The app also can help with a variety of other issues that can confront busy business travelers. The app can:
- Find alternative flights quickly and open seats when you need to rebook.
- Keep travel points in one place. Enter your rewards-program information, and Tripit will update your points, miles or segments, allowing you to have all your account numbers, balances and expirations in one place.
- Get real-time alerts instantly – often faster than from the airlines – for flight delays, cancellations and gate changes.
- Get the best seats. Tell Tripit your seat preference, and the app will notify you if it becomes available, which could save you from a dreaded middle seat on a cross-country flight.
- Get fare refunds. Tripit will track fare changes and let you know when you’re eligible for a refund.
Surviving the Layover
Let’s face it. Layovers are a necessary evil for the weary business traveler. Flight delays can make layovers even more unbearable. GateGuru can ease some of the pain by offering detailed maps of all the major airports and terminals and can offer advice on airport dining options. The app also will monitor your flight status, so you don’t miss your flight while eating an airport burger or veggie wrap. It can happen!
Sampling the Local Cuisine
When you’re on the road, finding good food is a must. There are only so many appetizers you can eat at the hotel restaurant or overpriced room service you can scarf down in front of the TV. When you’re in a new city, it’s nice to sample the local cuisine and not just settle for the tried-and-true restaurant chains. Along with getting a list of restaurants at the hotel front desk or asking the concierge for help, try Foodspotting. Unlike many other apps that search restaurants, Foodspotting allows you to search by dish, and the app points you in the direction of the restaurants that serve the best versions, based on reviews from other diners.
Finding What You Need
While Foodspotting is great for finding food, there are times when you’ll need to find other things on your business travels, such as a gas station, bank, pharmacy or hotel (when the first hotel you’ve booked isn’t up to par). As far as apps go, AroundMe is an oldie but a goodie. It analyzes businesses and services around you and helps you find what you need.
Understanding the Language
If your business travels take you to foreign lands, it’s always helpful to know enough of the language to navigate the city. Let iTranslate be your personal translator. The app helps you translate words, phrases and text between 90 languages. Simply speak or type into your iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch. You also can have words and phrases spoken back to you with Voice-to-Voice Translation, which is a premium feature that comes with the $6.99 iTranslate Voice version.
This is just a sampling of the myriad apps available to the busy business travelers. What are some of your favorites?