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8 Apps To Take On Vacation

August has finally arrived and it’s time for that well-earned vacation. But that doesn’t mean you leave your smartphone behind. In fact, your mobile device can be a lifesaver, helping you to plan your trip, find out more about the places you visit, and even communicate with the locals!

Whether you are heading overseas or staying closer to home, there are literally thousands of apps that can help you make the most of your summer break. Here are just a few suggestions to get you started. Just make sure you stay on top of your data plan and don’t incur any unforeseen charges!

Packing Pro

An enjoyable vacation starts with a well-organized suitcase and Packing Pro will make sure you have everything you need. Whether it’s bathing suits, batteries or baby wipes, Packing Pro will make sure nothing gets left behind. Make your own list or use one of Packing Pro’s suggestions. Plus, with the new iCloud support, your lists can be accessed from any connected device, so you can add or delete items whenever you want. You can also edit your lists with Excel, Numbers, or Google Docs.

Platform: iPhone, iPad
Cost: $2.99

Wi-Fi Finder

Whether you are looking to catch up on some work, surf the web, or just check e-mail, Wi-Fi Finder has you covered. It uses your phone’s GPS to find a wireless connection point, and then gives you precise directions on how to get there. It’s great for travel, with over 650,000 locations in 144 countries, making sure that you can minimize those costly data charges. You can even filter by location type – restaurant, café, hotel, etc.

Platform: iPhone, iPad, Android
Cost: Free


Have you ever been stuck in an airport or on a plane without anything to read? The Pocket app (formerly Read It Later) allows you capture articles on the web and sync them to your phone or tablet for reading later, even without an Internet connection. You can Pocket pretty much anything that appears on the Web, including text, photos and videos. Once the content is saved, it can be accessed from virtually any device, including your computer.

Platform: iPhone, iPad, Android
Cost: Free


Don’t be fooled by those clouds. Download the iSunBurn app and get the UV Index forecast for wherever you happen to be. iSunBurn will tell you what SPF level of sunscreen you'll need and how long it will take unprotected skin to burn. Keep your family safe and comfortable and make sure you always take appropriate precautions against overexposure to the sun, even when the UV Index shows just moderate readings!

Platform: iPhone
Cost: $0.99

Swim Guide

Need a beach? Download the Swim Guide app and you'll be able to get directions to the closest beach, plus real-time information on water quality. The app features over 1,800 different beaches, including lakes, traditional oceanfront beaches, and city parks. The app includes photos and some background information on history, geography and local culture. Use the social media and sharing features to invite friends to join you!

Platform: iPhone, iPad, Android
Cost: Free

Oh, Ranger! ParkFinder

If exploring, backpacking, camping and hiking are on your list, then the Oh, Ranger! ParkFinder app is a must. It will tell you the best spots in the U.S. for camping, swimming, hiking, boating or bird watching. It will even show you where the nearest frisbee golf course is! No matter what park or activity you have in mind, Oh, Ranger! ParkFinder will find it for you.

Platform: iPhone, iPad, Android
Cost: Free


Whether you are looking for something specific or you just want to know what’s in the area, AroundMe is the quickest and simplest way to find out information about your surroundings. Using your smartphone’s built-in GPS technology, AroundMe can pinpoint and direct you to the nearest gas station, bank, hotel, movie theater, restaurant, supermarket or anything else you need. Every listing is located on a map, with easy directions on how to get there.

Platform: iPhone, iPad, Android
Cost: Free

Google Translate

The amazing Google Translate app can instantly translate words and phrases between more than 60 languages. In many cases, you can just speak your phrases and have the translation spoken aloud back at you or the people you are with. You can pre-record and store previous translations for use when you are off line, or use many of the app’s standard phrases. There is even a full screen text mode for extended conversations. A must-have app for any traveler.

Platform: iPhone, iPad, Android
Cost: Free

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