Girl Rome selfie


5 free snap-happy travel apps you need before you head OS

Published November 6th, 2013

A pocket-sized travel guide doesn’t get any more convenient or compact than your trusty smartphone. With Android and iPhone apps for changing currency (XE Currency), finding your way around (Google Maps), translating phrases into the local lingo (Google Translate) and even checking out reviews of cafes from Austin to Zurich (Yelp), the days of the bulky travel guide are definitely numbered. Not to mention, wandering around with a paper map and guidebook just screams tourist. (Especially if you’re wearing zip-off cargos and hiking boots, and you’re not on safari – just saying.)


Oh, this thing in the background?


With a powerful smartphone camera at your fingertips, you can even leave the bulky lens and tripod at home. You’re probably already down with Instagram and Snapchat, so here’s 5 free photo and video apps you need right now to capture all those travel moments; filter or #nofilter.


For awe-inspiring panorama shots: Photosynth
When the square limitations of Instagram just won’t cut it. Do the Grand Canyon and Patagonia trail justice with a 3D or 360-degree full-sphere snapshot. Photosynth captures your image from left to right and from above and below, and stitches the panorama together seamlessly to create an epic image you can also share on Facebook, Twitter and email.


For short-and-sweet mobile movies: Viddy
Capture, create and share snappy 30-second videos on your smartphone. You can record multiple clips by pausing and resuming recording. Plus, Viddy allows you to add a soundtrack, edit with custom filters and contrasts, and publish your mobile mini-movie masterpiece on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Tumblr with just one click. Biebs is a fan.


For custom video postcards: Postcard On The Run
To make your BFFs green and touch base with the olds, this cool app allows you to add a short video to accompany your custom postcard of a fave travel image. What? You want more? How about adding a scent like Ocean Breeze or Holiday Spice to your postcard with Smell Mail? And signing the postcard with your finger on your phone? Done and done.


For retro postcards from your phone: Boastcards
And by retro, we mean you can drag your image back in time via Boastcards’ ‘Flux Capacitor’ to whatever era you desire. Want a ‘50s technicolour wash? Or a sepia ‘70s tone? Add themed borders, customise with a personal message and send or share on Facebook. You can also feel smug knowing your  postcard is printed on  eco-friendly paper stock.


For pro-editing: Adobe Photoshop Express
Selfie suffering from dodgy shadows and red-eye awfulness? Tweak those deets with the original on-the-go photo editor. From the basics (flip, crop, rotate) to a one-touch Auto Fix function to sort the contrast, exposure and white balance, pay a bit more for a Looks pack to really go pro. It’s you - just better looking. We’re ready for our close-up!




Cassandra Laffey

Consumed with unrequited wanderlust, I get my fix in 24/7 cities and hippie retreats. I'm still looking for the ultimate combo of secluded beach and major metropolis, and my happy place is a 5-star hotel room all to myself - sigh.