Travel companion | Download Product Review - CNET

Travel companion

WorldMate's freemium app bundles local weather information, a currency converter, and flight lookup and itinerary information into an indispensable tool for frequent business travelers.

A visual upgrade is part of what makes WorldMate's venerable travel companion app especially appealing on the iPhone, but it's the local weather information, currency converter, and flight lookup and itinerary information that make it an indispensable tool for frequent business travelers. Users can create and track travel itineraries including flights, hotel reservations, rental cars, and appointments. Doing so ahead of time from a WorldMate Web account is an easy way to go, but you can also e-mail flight confirmations and itineraries to a special address.

A $20 yearly subscription to the WorldMate service slashes the ads and gives you an automatic flight status checker that, with the soon-to-be-released iPhone OS 3.0, will send you an alert if there's a delay or cancellation of your flight. It also uses Google Maps to mark out your itinerary.

In most areas, this app ran smoothly. However, it didn't perfectly catch the name of some trips we programmed in through the online portal, and in the free version, two of the five program screens are devoted to WorldMate's viral marketing. We also encountered a nag screen to invite others.

While there are other standalone apps that perform many of the same tasks as the premium version for free, it's nice to have all these features in one place. Casual travelers won't miss out too much on the upgraded elements; international sojourners will especially appreciate the itinerary, weather, and currency converter bundled together.

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