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Jan 18

Greener Travel With Five Helpful Apps

 

iPod map - greener travel

Environmentally friendly travel is fun, smart and convenient with these five apps:

1. Kanetix Travel App

This one is particularly helpful because it has a way to compare travel insurance quotes and buy travel insurance. This app also has a weather check for your destination, a travel checklist and destination attractions. You can shake your phone to find another adventure, too. How is this green, you say?

It saves time and energy online by finding quotes for you and tells you if the weather is suitable for this trip. If not, you have saved precious vacation time by planning to go somewhere else that is more to your liking. Knowing where you want to go once you get to your destination also saves fuel because you can use direct routes instead of wandering around looking for things to do. You can see the site here: http://www.kanetix.com/travel-insurance-app.

2. greenMeter

This app can be found on iTunes for $5.99 and pays for itself after a couple of tanks of gas. The app is for an iPhone or an iPod Touch, and gives a driver information about his or her car’s fuel usage and carbon footprint. This can be done standing still by tipping the electronic device forward and then back, but it works better in a moving car. Acceleration, resistance and drag is computed across a range of speeds as the car goes forward and the results help drivers see what the most efficient speed is for a specific car. There is more information at http://hunter.pairsite.com/greenmeter/.

3. iTrans

Also on iTunes, iTrans shows travelers city subway maps so as to avoid cab rides, which saves fuel and carbon emissions. The cities are all in the United States and include New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Washington D.C., to name a few. The app updates users on service outages, transfers and time tables. It also gives directions for walking to a destination, and that is very green. At $3.99, it’s less than the cost of a cab ride.

4. Hootroot

The Hootroot app by Brighter Planet won an EPA award for finding the most fuel-efficient way to go from one destination to another using Google Maps. The combination of directions and carbon footprints in various forms of travel allow users to choose the greenest route between two points. Car, air, human-powered options and mass transit routes are analyzed in regard to CO2 emissions based on specific directions.

5. TripSketch Green Book

This handy app has information on hotels, attractions, tours and restaurants that are eco-friendly in 80 of the world’s most popular destinations. The app also provides “extras” by noting other green community options in these destinations that give back, such as a women’s cooperative, restaurants that are teaching youth at risk marketable skills or an orphanage that puts on a dance show. There are also restaurants or hotels in a certain area that employ farm-to-table cooking.

At $4.99, this app is well worth the cost, especially when 20% of all proceeds are sent to environmental and non-profit social causes.

Travel apps not only keep you green, they do it with ease for your convenience. They do not weigh anything, either. Travel books, maps, and GPS devices add to the carbon footprint by weight and drag, and they slow you down. Green travel apps: try them, you’ll like them.

Daniel Watson is a ex-high school teacher turned full-time blogger. He is passionate about cars, travel and everything green. His goal is to fuse his writing and his passions in a way that helps people recognize the importance of caring about the environment, and perhaps learn a thing or two along the way.

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