It’s that time of year again. I’ve been testing out new apps and tools which planning trips easier and make my life on the road easier / safer / more worry free. Here’s the most used apps on my phone today.
WhereFor: Are you the truly adventurous type? Let’s say you have a few days of vacation with a set budget in mind and you’re flexible on where you go. WhereFor has a search ability which lets you build an entire trip based on dates and, most importantly, the amount you have on hand to spend. Genius. (Similar to Skyscanner (See previous post)
Will my flight be on time?
FlightAware: Keep track of not only your own flight, but get the skinny on your inbound flight. It may look all clear for your outbound, but what happens if your airplane is late coming from its previous destination. You can solve it by going back a step with FlightAware to avoid surprises. I use it to see if my flight and its origin flight will be on time, then use that info to decide if I should start planning a backup flight – I want to be the first person to start rescheduling, not the person standing in line who doesn’t know what their options are.
Staying in touch:
TripIt: Great way to share itineraries and let friends/family know where you’ll be on your next trip. How it works: Your airline or hotel sends you a confirmation email, you forward that email to [email protected] and it gets magically loaded into your travel profile/itinerary.
Has a pro-version which will highlight when there are price changes, so you can get a refund and flags when a flight is delayed. I recommend this for anyone traveling.
I lost my phone overseas:
Prey: Physical phone security. Loaded with tons of features on the free version, Prey keeps tabs on your phone in case of theft. Features geolocation plus remote options to lock it down: activate screen lock; delete passwords; record who may be using it and remote data wipe. The application can be accessed from anywhere you can get online.
Online security for your 1s and 0s:
Private Tunnel VPN: Online security while you’re on the road or in any cafe. (For more see my article on virtual security).
But JC, what’s a VPN?
I’m glad you asked. A VPN is a Virtual Private Tunnel. It re-routes your data through a central server where the company encrypts your data. Think of the Internet like a movie theater-sized soda with a giant straw; a VPN creates a smaller straw inside of the bigger straw. Great for watching Netflix overseas, looking at your bank account or personal emails while using a public WiFi.
Using all or a combination of the above apps has helped keep me and my data safe while traveling and at home, plan better, travel safer and worry less.