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Nine must-have apps for business travellers

By Andrew Harbison

As new security rules regarding laptops and tablets on planes come into force, here are nine useful apps any business traveller should have on their smartphone.

1. Concur

Concur is an all-in-one expense and invoicing app for the regular business traveller. The app allows you to keep track of electronic receipts from airlines, hotels and restaurants and send them via the app to a manager for approval.

The app also allows users to take pictures of receipts and quickly create expense reports.

Available on IOS and Android (Free)

2. Uber

The car hailing app is a must for getting from A to B, especially in an unfamiliar city. Simply enter the address of your final destination and Uber will use your phone’s location services to calculate the fastest route and show you how much it will cost before you even get in a car.

You can then track your driver in real time as they make their way to pick you up and as you are in transit. Payment is taken securely via your Uber account meaning no money ever changes hands.

Available on IOS and Android (Free)

3. Tripit

Keeping track of your travel itinerary can often become a hassle. Booking confirmations, boarding passes and even details of how to get from the airport to your hotel or meeting can become scattered around your inbox.

Tripit takes care of this for you. Simply forward on all those confirmation emails to the app and it will consolidate your entire itinerary into one neat package.

Flights, hotels, car rentals, restaurant reservations, and other travel plans are automatically recorded in your ‘master itinerary’. This can be shared with colleagues to let them know where you are and how to contact you.

Available on IOS and Android (Free)

4. Yelp

It has been said that an army runs on its stomach, and the same can be said about the intrepid business traveller. Why not skip the stale sandwiches served during the post-meeting networking and get something proper to eat?

Yelp will show you the restaurant closest to you, or you can search a specific cuisine. Bon appétit.

Available on IOS and Android (Free)

5. Jinn

If it’s been ‘one of those days’ and all you want to do is get back to your room, kick back and have something tasty to eat, then you should download Jinn. The app’s namesake is taken from the Arabic name for a genie, which is understandable as the app allows you to order (almost) anything you wish.

Jinn’s couriers will pick up and deliver anything from takeaway meals, items from the local grocer, and even a new shirt if your luggage has been lost.

Available on IOS and Android (Free)

6. App in the air

For those who suffer from travel anxiety and need to know exactly how long each segment of your flight will take, then App in the air is made for you. The app splits your flight into four stages: check in, boarding, take off and landing, and will send you notifications if any of these times change.

To further alleviate any travel induced stress, the app also works offline, so there is no need to rack up a hefty amount of roaming charges.

Available on IOS and Android (Free)

7. Google Translate

It’s more than likely that you won’t have time to learn a new language on the fly. Road signs, menus and transport timetables can be a challenge if you don’t speak the language.

With Google Translate, you simply point your device’s camera at the aforesaid text and the app will provide you with a real-time translation on your screen. You can also download translation packages onto your device meaning they will work without the need to be connected to the internet.

Available on IOS and Android (Free)

8. Duolingo

If you want to take your understanding of a new language further than simple translation, Duolingo is a great place to start. The app has a wide choice of languages to learn, with greetings, grammar and common phrases being broken down into bite-sized lessons and daily learning goals keep you on track.

Duolingo is the perfect jumping off point for anyone wanting to learn a new language.

Available on IOS and Android (Free)

9. Fairfly

Keeping costs down in business is vital, so it’s important to make sure you are getting the very best deal that you can when booking your travel. Taking advantage of the volatility of airfares, Fairfly can save you money on your plane ticket after you’ve paid for it.

Simply send them your flight details and Fairfly will scan the marketplace looking for the price of your exact journey, or one similar, to drop below the price you paid. When that happens the app will notify you and put you through to the airline’s re-booking office.

Available on IOS and Android (Free)

This article was originally published in the 30 March 2017 edition of CA Today.