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Summer is near, and I can almost smell the fresh-cut grass, taste the hot dogs at the ballpark and the time off from work is within arm’s reach. In the spirit of the season, we’ve identified a selection of mobile apps that can help you get more out of your summer days.
Planning a trip?
From booking your flight to planning your daily itinerary, vacation planning can be both fun and overwhelming. Use these apps to ease the planning process.
Booking travel and accommodations
As a frequent flyer on Southwest Airlines, I regularly use their app to book and manage my flights. But I am certainly open to other ways to find affordable air fares, such as:
Packing for the trip
With so many highly-rated apps that are focused on weather out there, how do you choose which one to trust? Personally, I don’t get out of bed in the morning before looking at my Weather Underground app, which touts itself as delivering “the world’s most accurate hyper-local weather forecasts,” derived from crowd-sourced weather data. For a nominal fee, NOAA Radar Pro provides 24-hour and 7-day forecasts, real-time weather, and hurricane and storm tracking.
Navigating unfamiliar streets
I am a loyal user of Google Maps and appreciate their navigation options by car, transit or on foot. With 220 countries and territories covered, you might be all set using this app to get around during your time away. If you’re driving on your trip, consider Waze, a community-based app that leverages user information to provide real-time traffic conditions and alerts of accidents, construction, road hazards and other activity. Don’t anticipate you’ll have good service where you’re going? There are plenty of apps available that offer offline GPS navigation. For example, CoPilot GPS provides unique features, including free offline mapping, multistops and walking mode.
Having trouble staying focused as your trip approaches? Keep your eyes on the prize with apps such as Dreamdays, Countdown!! and Countdown+++. Look forward to your vacation by tracking exactly how many days left until your trip with one of these or many other free and paid apps available. Final Countdown even shows years, months, weeks, days, hours, minutes and seconds until your big event. Let the countdown begin!
Even if you’re not making any big trips this summer, there is fun to be had right outside your doorstep.
Exploring the familiar
I am a fan of stay-cations and am planning on spending most of my summer at home in Baltimore. Here are a few of my top picks.
Of course there are millions of applications for your smartphone or tablet, and we can’t list them all. Know of any other great apps? Share with us in the comments!
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Alyson Hayward is a newbie blogger testing the waters. A native New Englander, she enjoys the beauty of four seasons but would prefer spending her time only in the warmer ones. When she’s not at work, you can find her exploring the city or daydreaming about the beach.