Travel smarter with Frommer’s Travel Tools

Whether you’re planning for a weekend getaway or a lengthy expedition, traveling can be stressful (Volcanoes, anyone?). One thing I know I’ll be packing on my next trip abroad (once I renew that passport — it was getting full anyway) is the new iPhone app from the friendly folks at Frommer’s.  

Frommer’s Travel Tools doesn’t focus on travel tips like the company’s signature travel guides, but emphasizes handy tools that even the most seasoned travel can find useful.  

Frommer’s Travel Tools is divided into nine sections, which vary in actual usefulness. The converter uses your Internet connection to update the exchange rate, so you can get an accurate picture of how many Euros, Rupees or Yuan Renminbi your U.S. dollar can buy. Hit the switch button to reverse the conversion. Within the converter, you can also convert temperature, weight, distance and volume easily. The time translator is useful for seeing the correct time around the globe, however, there are some strange omissions—Beijing is no where to be found, for instance—and errors. From Chicago, Rome’s time displays correctly as seven hours ahead, but anything west of the Windy City (Shanghai, Sydney) displays incorrectly.

The tip calculator is something I can see using on a daily basis even when I’m not traveling. There’s also an included tipping guide for foreign countries so you can see if you’re committing a faux pas by leaving gratuity. And the inclusion of packing list, flashlight and postcard feature was just smart. The “Apps We Love” section is pretty worthless, but I do like that you can easily access the websites of Frommer’s books through the City Guides section.

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