As technology progresses, we find it critical that we update our favorite apps once a year. Below is what we used the most in 2014 and plan to use in 2015:
Apple Passbook ($Free)
I have my booking reservations, membership cards, hotel loyalty cards, boarding passes, American Express recent transactions…etc all under this handy app. For non-Passbook supported merchants, you can add them manually for free by going to PassSource. This app has made going paperless much easier. It also cuts down on how many cards I have in my wallet.
Yahoo! Weather ($Free)
I fell in love with Yahoo! Weather and stopped using the default weather app in my iPhone. The simplicity in design and how the app auto-connects to random Flickr images for the backgrounds that represent the locations and current weather is outstanding. The greatly designed info-graphics that include detailed weather descriptions, humidity, precipitation, wind & pressure, sunrise and sunset time put this app above its competitors.
Kayak Pro ($0.99)
I’m not fond of TripIt. Its UI/UX design is terrible and disorganized, especially since it prides itself in organization. Kayak does the same thing and it has more valuable features than Tripit. Hotel, Flights, Cars, trip details, flight tracker, price alerts, airline directory, airline fees, airport maps, price history, packing list… and more. This app provides a backup of all things related to our trips.
There is something fun about using the latest technology to make things look vintage and old. We call that Hipsterology. But out of all the social media photo-treatment type apps, I always come back to Instagram for its user-friendly interface and simplicity. An app that provides phenomenal results with minimal effort will always be loved by me.
Staying fit and healthy is a lifestyle, just be cause we are on the road doesn’t mean we should ignore our health. This app allows us to track our food and calorie intakes, nutritional balances, and cardiovascular activities on a daily basis. You can scan the barcodes of a product or estimate recipes for nutritional values of anything you eat on the road.
Granted, I should not be worrying about business or personal finances when I am on vacation, but the curiosity in me always wins. SigFig provides a quick and simple overview of my stock portfolio and other investments without spending too much valuable time that should be spent relaxing.
CNN = Ads, AP = Ads, Any news App = Ads. But not SmartNews! I finally found a news app that I absolutely love. Not only you get up-to-date top local and world news deliver to you from different sources. You can also subscribe for free to top blogs such as… Entrepreneur, Cnet, Fast company, Engadget, Mashable…etc. The app taps into the smart view phone feature which eliminates all original design and put each article into an easy read: title, image, body text grid. I deleted all the other news apps~
No matter what people say. Money is what makes any travel dreams come true. You can couch surf all you want, but you still need to eat and get from point A to point B. Bloomberg allows me to stay connected efficiently with all the financial news.
Star Walk ($2.99)
I recently got into astrophotography and travel to places around the world to hunt for the best Milky Way night sky. Star Walk is my go to interactive astro guide to the night sky with extensive information about stars and constellations.
Google Maps ($Free)
Let’s face it, Apple may had designed a sleek phone. But Apple Maps is ridiculously useless. The caching feature in Google Maps makes roaming abroad without network data bearable. Although I always sign up for roaming data with AT&T whenever I leave the country for unforeseen emergencies. Those who are unwilling to pay extra, Google Maps and Pocket earth are your friends. I particularly love that Google uses the phone channel Bluetooth in my car instead of the media channel, so the navigation instructions can be synced with the car speakers while enjoying music at the same time.
Pocket Earth Offline Maps & Travel Guides ($2.99)
This is one of the best app discoveries I have ever had. There are numerous offline apps out there, however Pocket Earth’s maps take up the least of your storage space. You can pre-download the vectorized offline maps during WiFi and use them without data. The app also provides travel guides to 20k+ places and 500k+ Wikipedia articles for the history of the cities, attractions, and interest points offline! You can drop a pin at where you parked your car or saved an address as favorite. All in offline mode and all Free after the initial $2.99.
You can never have enough travel inspiration apps. Afar gives me unique point-of-views from other travelers and locals without the self entitled douchiness like many other social collective travel apps.
My TSA ($Free)
There are still times when I am completely confused on the TSA 3-1-1 Rule and on whether or not I can bring something via carry-on. How long is the estimated wait time at LAX? Special medical needs? This app gives me all the answers. Roller deodorant? Cured air-sealed Italian meat? Dutch Cheese? Whatever questions you have, it has answers.
From temperature to currency, weight, tips, and length… etc. This app satisfies all my conversion needs. It also gives you the option to make your own. For example the weighting system in the farmers markets in Taiwan is Jin & Liang. I made a custom conversion table for it which you can find published on the app database. Are you wondering how much 300 Czech Koruna is in USD? Why is it so hot in here when the thermostat says 30? Pull up the app and find out!
Google Translate ($Free)
With this app, I have 60+ languages at my finger tips. 這個 app，讓 Nicole 覺得她會說中文。Il me fait aussi penser que je suis à l’aise en français.
The app syncs with my Kindle at home. It allows me to have my entire book collection in my phone, which means one less device to carry around the world. I can also store all kinds of PDF maps and guide books, so that’s one less book and one less printout to carry around.
Line Tools ($Free)
From flashlight, ruler, leveler, timer, mirror, spaghetti serving measurer, to the most useful size table, this app packs a punch for free! What does size 40 in women’s clothing in France equivalent to in the US? Open the app and find out!
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