If your job involves a lot of travel, you know how maddening it can be: the delayed flights, the missed connections, the inability to find a good cup of coffee in a foreign city.
Luckily, the connectivity to travel information, news, music, social networks mobile apps provides can help keep you sane – even after your fifth whole-body scan of the week. I asked three of the busiest business travelers I know to share what apps keep them tethered to sanity when spending so much time up in the air. Take a deep breath, grab a day old bagel and enjoy these 14 apps for the weary business traveler.
Twitter Mobile App
Because Hi, I’m Ann. I’m a Twitterholic. And I don’t know what I would do if I couldn’t share every second of my day while I’m traveling too.
MarketingProfs Mobile App
I can check in with all the content we are publishing daily even when I’m not around to read my email or check the site. It’s great for a quick Content fix while waiting in the TSA line, for example.
You might laugh, but the one thing I like to keep consistent on the road – it reminds me of my home routine! – is my daily Starbucks fix. If I close my eyes while I’m sipping, I can pretend I’m in my own kitchen.
Posterous Mobile App
Great little tool to share interesting photos and other content I stumble upon (lowercase) on the road. Like this: http://annhandley.posterous.com/car-keys-amazing I mean, how can I not share that?!
Skype Mobile App
I can say goodnight to my kids in person…kinda. Anyway, it’s free and video. And what I save on long-distance I can put toward their therapy down the line when they tap into the pain of having an absentee mother.
Just enter the flight information and it accesses real-time information about delays, flight history and weather. You can even check out alternate flights on the go.
Some times I’m just too tired to think. But I’m never too tired to toss colorful exploding birds at annoying green pigs. Hey, it’s a better habit than smoking and you get to destroy things.
My travel often takes me to many cities within one “trip” so coordinating
flights, hotels, car rentals, etc is a challenge. The TripIt Travel app allows me to forward my e-mail receipts, and it combines all my travel and accommodation information as well as my loyalty accounts into one “master trip itinerary”. It’s a frequent traveler’s best friend.
I never seem to get a direct flight to any destination and so layovers have become an expected part of my travel experience throughout the US. I’ve begun to rely on the layover to “get things done” during my travel day so I use GateGuru’s app to search U.S. airports and international hubs for the airline’s lounge, the ATM machine, the best cup of coffee, good places to connect to the internet, etc. When weather delays create a shorter than planned layover, GateGuru is a time-saver!
The gamification or “specials” aspect of FourSquare has
engaged a lot of people, but I use it to identify which of my colleagues or
friends happen to be in the cities I’m travelling through. Business travel
is a very lonely experience for the most part and discovering a colleague to
have dinner with or a friend to catch up with has become a welcome part of
my frequent travels.
Okay, I’ll add a few of my favorites as well. I spend so much time in airports that I find the Public Radio Player, developed by the Public Radio Exchange, to be invaluable. It streams stations live from across the country. You can select by featured stations, show, state or even stream some on-demand podcasts. And what’s more soothing than the docile intonations of Scott Simon or Ira Glass?
The Yelp mobile app is a life saver when I am trying to find food or coffee that’s higher quality than, say, Denny’s. The ability to filter by what’s Open Now ensures I can find grub on those late-night arrivals.
Lastly, the Chatter mobile app from Salesforce.com helps me keep on top of what’s happening with my Eloqua colleagues around the globe.
What apps do you use to stay when on the road?