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The Best Cruise Apps for your iPhone, Android phone or iPad

Posted September 19th, 2011

What’s the next best thing to actually being on a cruise?

Dreaming about being on a cruise of course!

We have been trawling the internet looking for cruise apps for the technology geek in all of us, and these apps will feed the cruise dreamer in you, help you plan your cruise or come in handy on your cruise!

Cruise Dreaming:

At the heart of everyone’s cruise dreams is the simple map. What destinations are you go to? What travel path does the cruise follow? How far apart are the destinations? Charting cruise itineraries on a map is a sure-fire way to get those cruising juices flowing, and one of the best map apps available to help you do this has been designed by National Geographic, the gold standard of travel writing and photography. They have taken their collection of maps and created an interactive globe which allows you to explore the world at your leisure.

  • Fotopedia Heritage

This is the app for anyone who loves great travel photography, and it is sure to get you so excited about all of the exotic destinations out there just waiting for you, that you book your next cruise straightaway! This app has been designed in partnership with UNESCO World Heritage Centre and as a result you will have access to 1000’s of stunning photos featuring every world heritage site in the world. You will be able to download the photos to use as wallpaper, save your favourite images for your travel planning and share the best photos via social media. It also includes information about each location from UNESCO and Wikipedia, so while travelling it will make a great portable travel encyclopaedia.

Cruise Planning:

  • Conde Nast Traveller Cruise Finder

This app is essentially a sales tool, but if you can look past this then you will find you also have an amazing planning tool, and one that is a lot of fun to boot. Its interactive map of the world allows you to look at various ports of call, select specific cruise lines and ships, and learn more about each of them. It also includes customer ratings and key details, like the cost of Wi-Fi, how many restaurants are on board and beautiful photos. Essential research if you aren’t sure which cruise to book.

Unless you have recently won the lotto and quit your job, maximising your time and money while cruising is extremely important and often only achievable by being super-organised. This app will help you be just that! TripIt organises all of your travel information for you and generates complete itineraries that you can later early access from your mobile device. You can input all of the information manually, or the app can do it for you – just forward your emails on and within seconds you will have a complete itinerary available in your TripIt account.

  • Always be Cruising

This social network style app allows you to create a profile and upload your cruise itinerary so that you can connect with fellow passengers on the same cruise as you. This is especially useful if you are a solo traveller looking to connect with other cruisers, or even if you are just keen to make some new friends on your holiday. You can also get advice from past cruisers on anything from which buffet to avoid, to which cruise director is the best, and so by the time you actually head off on your cruise you already know the ins and outs.

  • Ship Mate

Can’t wait until your departure to start exploring your ship? Then make sure you get this app straight after you book, and you will be able to explore your ship and ports right away! You can also plan your trip through handy functions like roll call chat, deck maps, ship locator, ship and port information, deck and port cams, a packing checklist, cruise tips, a countdown clock, a daily schedule and excursion plans.

  • PackTM

All booked and packing to go? This simple bag-packing app helps you put together your bag inventory so you can keep track of the items you pack and later make sure that you haven’t lost or left anything behind.


  • Cardstar

Before embarking on your cruise you might need to fly to your departure point, and there is nothing peskier than not being able to find your loyalty card numbers to claim all of your points. That’s where this hand little app comes in. It allows you to store all of your loyalty and frequent guest card numbers in one place so you will always be able to access your frequent flier or hotel loyalty number. And, it doesn’t have to be limited to travel either – you can also store things like your grocery loyalty numbers too.

  • Deck Director

This onboard cruise ship guide is perfect for people with zero sense of direction finding themselves lost on the latest and greatest mega-ship. It has deck plans for all of the ships in the Carnival, Princess and Holland America fleets, and will give you directions on how to get from one place to another, and will then plot your return trip for you.

This handy little app will help you keep track of the size of your cruise bill as well as any penny-pinching spouse would! You can also save information from past cruises so that you can compare the total costs of all the different lines and destinations. And it has loads of fun features too, like a countdown clock and photo backgrounds so that you can match your app to the ship you’re sailing on.

  • XE Currency

While not a cruise-specific app, this will come in handy when you’re in foreign ports and can’t work out how many European Euros’ you will get for your Aussie dollars. It is simple and straightforward to use – just select the currency and the amount you want to convert, and you’re done. So, whenever you are in port you will be able to find the latest rates and won’t find any nasty surprises on your credit card bill when you get home.

  • LingoLook Flashcards

Another great app for your time in foreign ports! This app helps you communicate with the locals so that you know what you are eating, can ask for directions and generally know what trouble you may be getting yourself into. It can even say the phrase out loud to the person you are talking to so you don’t have to worry about sounding funny!

  • Ship Finder

This fun app tracks ships movements in real time, so while you are on your cruise you can see what other ships are nearby and track them.

  • Simply Postcards

Want to send your loved ones at home a postcard to make them go green with envy? With this app you can choose a photo, add in the recipient and will print, stamp and mail your real postcard the next day. Make sure you look at the different price ranges involved.


Do you have any other apps you can’t do without while travelling?


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