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8 Apps to De-stress Travel Plans

When going on holiday or business trip there are essential items that you can install on your smartphone device to make sure your trip is stress free. The app market is like the modern day Swiss-army knife, offering a wide range of practical and intelligent apps to save you time, money and keep you entertained. Below are apps that should be installed on every smart phone before venturing out into the big wide world.

1. Holiday planner App

WorldMate

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Images sent by author

Worldmate is most likely the closest thing to a personal assistant you will be able to find in an application. This application is available on iPhone and Android but blackberry users will have to turn to BlackBerrys own application. To use WorldMate is simple, just forward your various confirmation emails for flights/hotels/hire cars/restaurant bookings etc. to trips@worldmate.com and the clever little application will instantly generate you an itemised itinerary for your entire trip. WorldMate gets even better if you buy the premium version unlocking real time data, letting you know when flights are delayed or if your gate has been changed.

Available on iPhone (free) and Android (free)

BlackBerry Travel

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BlackBerrys own tool scans your various travel documents from emails to piece together a personal travel itinerary just like WorldMate. Blackberry Travel, once populated with your travel information, will set up alerts and updates when disruptions to your plans occur. The application also gives you the ability to adjust and book extra parts to your trip on the move, making your itinerary fellable to you. With extra features like local weather, currency converter and world clocks it is the perfect trip planner app for Blackberry.

Available on BlackBerry (free)

2. Airline Travel App

Airlines book and travel Apps

These applications are designed to let you book your flights, check-in and choose your mobile boarding pass, download and store your mobile boarding pass and get easy access to all your future bookings. Whilst being able to monitor your collected points. Some of the apps go that little bit further and offer interactive city guides and built in mobile web browsing of their company’s main site.

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Most are Available on iPhone (free) and Android (free) BlackBerry (free) and Windows Phone (free)

3. Book App

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Many people enjoy a good book whilst traveling. There are many applications on the market that offer you the chance to make your mobile or tablet into an entire book collection and book store. Top of the market is the Kindle app. This app lets you use other devices to read your kindle books, meaning you are not only limited to a Kindle for reading. Most devices now come with a book app already installed like iBooks on Apple devices and Google Play Books on Android devices. However, most devices can also download a pdf reader and most books can be found online in PDF format, so our top tip is to find a book that can be read on all your devices, plane journeys can take hours and if your device shuts down due to lack of battery this could leave you on a cliff hanger!

4. Currency Conversion App

XE Currency

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If you need a free currency calculator app, look no further. XE Currency App features live rates for your phone. XE Currency is the number one currency application, with an impressive array of free features that is more than sufficient for the normal person.

Available on iPhone (free), iPad (free), Android (free) BlackBerry (free), Windows 7&8 (free) and Windows Phone (free)

5. Map App

Many devices offer their own built in map application with the ability to find your location and plot routes to a desired destination. The pre-installed applications on devices can sometimes feel limited and if this is the case it is time to branch out into the world of external developed apps with big name leaders like Google Maps, Bing Maps and TomTom trying to convince users to ditch the preinstalled software and upload theirs. Some of these maps offer more than top level navigation they can be programmed by the user to give detailed instructions on walking and driving doubling up as a sat-nav. My personal experience is that these applications are only good if there is a strong signal preferably 3g and the battery is charged as the applications are often power hungry.

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Available on iPhone (free), iPad (free), Android (free) BlackBerry (free), Windows 7&8 (free) and Windows Phone (free)

6. Photo App

Most smart phones now have good quality cameras and enough storage to be snap happy, but what do you do if you want to share your photos? There are applications that let you share your photo in a multitude of ways.

Instagram

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Over 130 million people use Instagram. It’s a simple way to capture and share the world’s moments on your iPhone. Simply take a photo and upload it.

Facebook

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Facebook allows you to connect with friends though uploading photos for people to comment share and tag. This app brings the world’s largest social network site to the palm of your hand.

Twitter

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See what photos are trending on twitter with the twitter app and try to get a new photo type trending using the # tag. Great examples of this are photo bombing and planking.

Flickr

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Flickr is a network for users that want to share photography, not just snaps. The network allows professionals and amateurs to share their best snaps.

7. Tip App

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Smartphones have been able to take out a lot of the guessing work whilst traveling and a new wave of tipping apps go that extra mile. They inform you of the local customs and what is expected in tips at the end of a meal or in a hotel when your bags are delivered to your door.

Leaving a tip in Japan is considered rude, as the culture has no president for this. Leaving money on the table at the end of a meal will result in the waiter running after you thinking you have left your money on the table and not as a tip.

In the USA tipping is not mandatory; however, it is expected in some circumstances. For example, service in a restaurant requires a tip, which should be calculated as a percentage of your total bill as follows: 10% usually means you are very unhappy, 15% usually means all was ok, 20% for excellent, 25% for outstanding.  15% and over is considered "normal".

Apps like – Tip N Split Tip Calculator, Tip Calculator and GlobeTipping are available on all smart phone devices and can be used when you are unsure on the local expectations on tips.

Available on iPhone (free), iPad (free), Android (free) BlackBerry (free), Windows 7&8 (free) and Windows Phone (free)

8. Translator App

Being able to say some phrases in a foreign language can be majorly beneficial. Translation apps come in many forms and are not new to the app market but some are defiantly better than others.

iTranslate –

iTranslate is an award winning translation tool that helps you break down language barriers. With its state of the art technology you can speak any language in a second.

Google Translate

Developed from the online translation tool, the application version allows you to preform text translation, voice input translation, dictionary’s look ups and ability to read foreign scripts. Google also goes one step further offering a conversation mode allowing simple conversation between two languages.

This article was written by Simon Markland of baggage and student shipping company VOOVit. For UK shipping please visit www.voovit.com

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