Before the invention of the smartphone, planning and organizing an entire trip was quite a cumbersome process. Travel plans and hotel reservations needed to be made by phone well in advance to the date of travel, and sightseers carried around bulky maps and heavy guidebooks to help them navigate a new city. But thanks to the impressive functionality of smartphones, modern-day travellers have access to all the information they need in one pocket-sized device. Let’s take a look at the ways that smartphones have made travelling easier.
Apps have absolutely revolutionized the way we travel. With the simple swipe of a finger, modern-day travellers have access to thousands of top-notch travel apps that make the entire trip-planning and trip-taking process easier. Need to book a flight or a hotel? No problem. Download apps from Orbitz, Priceline, Expedia, or Travelocity to compare fares from all the leading airliners and hotels. Some in-house apps—such as World Mate and BlackBerry Travel—will even keep track of your flight information for you once you book and send you updates and notifications about your upcoming trip. Want suggestions about where to go on your trip? Look to apps from TripAdvisor, FourSquare, and Foodspotting to ensure you’re making the most of your experience.
Trip planning is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the handiness of smartphone apps. These days, travellers can find apps to check the local weather conditions, calculate currency exchanges, and even translate foreign languages.
While it’s a good idea to limit calls and texts during a trip abroad to avoid costly roaming fees, travellers can use their mobile phones to access free Wi-Fi in air terminals, bus stations, hotels, and local cafes. This is a huge advantage for travellers who want to check their email, browse the web, or even make a few calls back home to family and friends using Skype, Viber, ooVoo, etc. While you could access these same services via other devices, smartphones tend to be much more portable than laptops or tablets, making them the ideal travel tool.
Even snapping some souvenir photos of your trip is easier with a smartphone in hand. These days, many smartphone cameras are on-par with their digital camera counterparts, allowing you to take high quality photos and edit them right on the phone itself. If you’re not satisfied with your phone’s built-in editing tools, you could always download an app like Camera360, PhotoShop Touch, FxCamera, or Instagram to enhance your image. Added bonus: after you’re done editing, you can immediately upload and share your travel photos with family and friends back home via your social media accounts. When you travel with a smartphone, the possibilities are truly endless.