Jan 25, 2011

Tripping with the iPhone

I just got back from a business trip to a very cold place.  While my iPhone wasn't able to keep me warm, I had tools on my iPhone that made travel a lot easier.  The most useful thing I did was something I did last year: I got a Tripit account.  Tripit is a free service that, when paired with the free Tripit app for the iPhone, allows you to take your itinerary with you in an easy-to-read, easy-to-access form.  The beauty of Tripit is how easy it is to get your itinerary into the app.  Once you've registered you simply email your itinerary to plans@tripit.com.

When I landed at my destination, I needed to call the hotel I was staying at to request a shuttle.  I simply looked up my hotel in Tripit app and tapped the button with their phone number to make the call.

Although the Tripit app does show flight status, it's not Tripit's forte, so it is a little cumbersome to get to.  When I wanted to quickly determine if my flight was on time or if I needed to know what gate to head to next, I turned to Flight Update Pro.  It would even notify me as boarding time approached. Flight Update Pro can connect to your Tripit account so that you don't have to enter any of your flight information.  It's little brother, Flight Update, does the same thing and is probably sufficient for any of your flying needs (though it doesn't have the notifications).  There are other good flight-tracking apps, such FlightTrack Pro, but if you get one, get one that integrates with your Tripit account.  You won't regret not having to enter flights manually.

If you have to travel and are married, you can set these apps up on your  spouse's iPhone, if he or she has one.  This will enable your spouse to keep track of your flights and know if your flight arrived safely, if you are delayed getting home, etc.  There's some peace of mind in that.

By the way, I used my Isotoner smarTouch gloves on this trip.  When the temperature is in the single digits, it's a really good thing to be able to use the touch screen on your phone without removing your gloves.  The gloves worked great.

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