Updated: Apr 5
iPackTravel's Travel Library uses a five-stage travel cycle concept to manage current or upcoming trips. It is a library of resources to provide stage-by-stage walk-through from planning trips to booking flights and accommodations, from packing light to travelling leisurely, and sharing of experience after the trip.
The five stages of a travel cycle are as follows:
Plan → Book → Pack → Travel → Share
The Travel Library has three main collections:
Travel applications (by iPackTravel app)
Extended functions (by iPackTravel's sister apps)
Online resources (by trusted service providers or affiliated partners)
All collections are distributed across the 5 travel-cycle stages according to their applicability at each stage for easy access.
Travel Library menu with applications & online resources
Note that all the apps are iOS-only. Android users may use our website (iPackTravel.com) to access the online resources. Some applications require in-app purchases.
Stage 1: PLAN
Planning for a trip is part and parcel of travelling, either prior to or on the trip. Inadequate planning can lead to travel disappointments, such as missed flight, crisscrossing of travel paths, etc, but over-planning can make the journey less adventurous or too restrictive. Planning for travel is a skill that can be picked up after many journeys.
First of all, when setting up a new trip, iPackTravel's World Info data libraries provide information such as major cities, phone code, currency, time zones, languages, city location, etc, for any country/city that is set as the travel destination. All information are available at your fingertips! You don't have to search for them any more.
When a trip is created, data are retrieved from data libraries automatically.
iPackTravel has a dual-purpose Trip Planner (a.k.a. Trip Diary) for planning of itineraries and daily activities, along with travel routes, time schedules and budget allocations (Budget Planner). Photos can also be attached for clarity.
Plan daily activities with gathered data.
Full-trip itinerary will be ready once all planned activities are defined. You can preview travel routes (main route from city to city and daily routes created from activity locations) and also share the itinerary, including travel route, with your travel companions.
Full itinerary in app and in PDF format for sharing.
Preview main travel route (blue) and activity route (red) around a city
Before planning a trip to any where, check out these pre-planning resources:
Travel alerts or safety concerns regarding the selected destination. We recommend the Travel Safety resource on WorldNomads.com as it is not limited to any country.
Holidays or festive period to identify peak travel seasons, avoid possibly overcrowding at tourist spots, scarce accommodations, expensive air tickets, etc.
Climate for desirable travel period. Non-peak travelling seasons are normally due to unfavourable climate.
Travel Library also provides a list of trusted online travel guides to provide you with useful information and facilitate the planning process. [Travel Library]
We recommend using eBooks.com to get travel e-guides for planning trips on the go. e-guides are also weightless to "carry" on the trip.
Stage 2: BOOK
Booking and planning for a trip are actually intertwined and affects one another. For instance, not able to get flights on specific dates or at preferred timings, not able to book your preferred accommodations, travel visas not approved, etc., can cause your travel plan to change, the trip to be postponed or travel budget to increase. So, do plan early and start making reservations, especially if it is the peak travelling seasons.
For long journeys where pre-booking of accommodations are not viable, make reservations online when on the trip, a day before arrival, to enjoy last-minute discounts from booking sites. The offered rates may be better than walk-in rates most of the time.
iPackTravel works with trusted service providers to provide bookings for flights, accommodations and getting travel insurance online:
For visas, which are regulated services by respective authorities and varies with nationalities of the applicants, we would suggest you refer to the respective official websites for up-to-date requirements. Visit Project Visa, which provides worldwide visas information including a list of all countries' official websites.
Stage 3: PACK
Packing for the trip requires an understanding about the travel destination. You need to know the weather conditions for the travel period and what clothes to bring. You need to understand the cultures there and probably take out the sleeveless tops or pack pants that cover the knees, etc. Mobile phones and gadgets need electricity, so you need to know which types of electrical outlets are there and whether adapters are needed. The list goes on...
iPackTravel can help you to pack what are needed for the trip and avoid over-packing. The Packing List function, apart from providing a list of items to pack for different climates, serves as reminders as well for what to bring. Items can also be categorised as liquid or gel, sharp or mandatory items. You can also specify what items to shop for at the destination. Customise your own packing list and re-use it for all future trips.
Packing List & Packing Tips modules
iPackTravel contains two data libraries for packing. A Packing Tips library for advice on items to bring or not to bring. The objective is to reduce the weight and size of your baggage to save costs and make travelling convenient for everyone.
The World Outlets & Plugs library allows automatic retrieval of electrical outlets data after you specified the travel destination. Unlike some websites that do compatibility checks using the outlets of your country and the destination, iPackTravel's compatibility checker remembers your device plugs and use it for checking every time. So, use the module to find the correct adapter for your next trip.
World Outlets module with checker for device plugs compatibility
iPackTravel's Travel Mart provides a convenient marketplace to get travel items (from Amazon) before the trip. Consolidate your purchases and save on delivery charges. The Travel Mart is also integrated with all packing applications in iPackTravel for ease of access to the items on sales.
Online resources for packing: [Travel Library]
We use XE.com for checking currency exchange rates on our website. In the iPackTravel mobile app, we have a dedicated Currency Rates module to get exchange rates automatically.
Stage 4: TRAVEL
While travelling, mobile network availability can be an issue in some places. Some countries have costly data plans, no network coverage in remote places, or restrictions on accessing information on foreign websites by local governments. For these places, it is advisable that you have your travel documents (flight details, hotel bookings, travel itineraries, etc.) with you in either hard copies or on a mobile device (when offline).
In this stage, iPackTravel focuses on applications that use less or no data to help save on data charges and also to function properly during network unavailability.
When travelling, the in-app Trip Diary function allows the itineraries to be updated with details of actual occurrences and expenses — like a real diary. The content can be used for story-telling or as reference for writing blogs later. The updated itinerary can also be shared with whoever is interested.
Update activities with actual experience like in a real diary.
The Location Finders is a new addition to the Travel Library. Similar to Captain Jack Sparrow's magical compass in the Pirates of the Caribbean movie series, Location Finder features a compass that points to specific location instead of the magnetic north. It supports a simple Compass Mode that requires no data plan. If you have data plan, the Compass-Map Mode provides a map with routing and directions for walking or driving.
Location Finder with two different modes
Find out how Location Finders can help to save data roaming charges
iPackTravel's sister apps also operate mostly offline. You can
monitor your budget and track travel expenses with iTreasurer (with two currencies for each travel wallet).
countdown to trip starts or important events with iCountDays.
share photos and your thoughts on social media (when WiFi is available) with iEmo. Just write a couple of lines on a photo and post it — fast, simple and save data charges.
use iGoDutch to split restaurant bills, including taxes, service charges or tips, with travelling friends.
Using iTreasurer to track travel expenses in home and foreign currencies.
Also, iPhones and iPads have these apps which you can use on your trip:
iBook - Store travel documents, reservation slips, flight details, etc.
Compass - Get your heading.
Maps - Find your way to places or check what's nearby.
Clock - Display time of cities in different timezone; and alarm clock.
Weather - Check the forecast before heading outdoors.
And of course, Camera.
Check out this new application for mapping travel / hiking trails
Stage 5: SHARE
You will probably want to share your travel experiences with family members, friends, colleagues and even "friends" on social media after an exciting trip. Sharing can be through photos, videos or story-telling in the form of blogs.
You can start sharing when on the trip but, as it is your own journey, your time and money, do spend more time on enjoying the trip instead of "reporting" to the people back home. It is better to do the heavy sharing after the trip.
Also, you can share your updated itinerary, using the Share Itinerary function, with whoever is interested to use it for their references. The itinerary will be much more accurate after the trip since you have already been through it.
Share updated itinerary with interested parties.
We encourage travellers to tell stories about their trips and share as much information as possible for others to follow. Help them by sharing your adventures, their stories will help you too on your next trip.
Where on Earth have you been?
If you are a keen traveller, consider starting your personal blogging site and monetise it for passive income. Start a free one with Wix.com.
Explore more features in iPackTravel!