Summer’s here and people have started going on holiday more and more. As a tablet or smartphone have become a compulsory accessory for any traveller nowadays, let’s see how we can turn these gadgets into useful tools for our travelling needs.
For any trip we intent to make we have to choose a route and some sights to visit. If we want to travel to other countries or areas we aren’t familiar with then we can use our smartphone or tablet as a GPS navigator (if the device has such a feature) and as a tourist guide by means of an internet connection.
In order to use your smartphone as a GPS navigator and thus excluding another device which we would have to take with us, we need one of the navigation apps available in Google Play or Apple Store.
We can also use Google Maps ( or Waze if you like it ) which is clearly one of the best smartphone apps and can be used for Turn-by-Turn guidance up to navigation, finding some places to visit, establishing complex routes, if we travel locally and have access to the internet via our network provider.
In case we travel to areas where we do not have Internet access then Google Maps becomes useless and it is best to use an offline GPS navigation app.
By now we already have a more useful tool, a smartphone which became a GPS car unit and at the same time an ideal partner in our travels.
But what if we don’t know exactly what we can visit at the location we go to? What are the best restaurants, what are the sights of the area, where can we find accommodation? Our smartphone or tablet can help us with this issue by means of some apps that have been especially created for this purpose.
Some notable apps are :
Booking.com where we can choose the best accommodation places, make reservations and much more.
Skyscanner is another interesting app where you can view airplane flights, routes and travel prices. Another app which has the same role as Skyscanner is Google Flights.
City Maps 2 Go is an app where you can explore the surroundings of the place you are visiting from tourist attractions, shows to restaurants and lodging. A big advantage of this app is the fact that you can download the map of the area you are visiting on the tablet or smartphone and then use its features in offline mode without having access to the Internet.
It serves the same purpose as TripAdvisor and TripAdvisor City Guides, a very popular app which will show you places you can visit or where you can shop in the surroundings of your location.
Before you travel, test these apps and see which one is the one that suits you the best. Although they are very popular they also have disadvantages like any other apps and you shouldn’t be surprised if you get different results and routes than the ones you wanted.
Ok, we have talked about using the tablet or smartphone as a GPS navigator and tourist guide for our trip. But can these gadgets be used differently?
Photos and movies
In our travels we will surely want to take a lot of photos. If we aren’t particularly interested in the quality of a DSLR camera and we can leave it home, we can use our tablet or smartphone to photograph the places we travel to. As in many cases the camera of the tablet doesn’t offer the best quality (same as many smartphones), there are apps for Android or iOS which allow us to take better photos, in the end these are our memories.
Here are some of the most popular apps :
Camera ZOOM FX is an Android app which helps you take quality photos. The stable-shot mode allows photographing only when the image is clear and stabilized and has available a post–photographing editing tools. Here you can read about other Android apps which help to achieve good photos.
For iPhone we have another app called ProCamera 7. With it we can adjust the picture settings from exposure to focus. There are many possibilities to adjust the photographing mode as well as a photo processing tool. You can find a full review of the best photo apps for iPhone here.
This concludes our article although we are sure that each of you have found other ways to turn your tablet or smartphone into an extremely useful tool for your travels be it an Android, Apple or Windows 8 device.
By means of the apps above, you have in the same package a smartphone (or tablet), a GPS navigator, a perfect guide for your journeys and a capable photo camera (although many will contradict me).
One last advice – check the mode in which these apps work, if they need an internet connection or if offline mode is also available, battery consumption (a very important aspect) and if you can easily use them. The goal is to have a carefree trip, right?