Packing Your iPhone for Travel

July 13, 2012

in Travel Tech

  • SumoMe

iPhone 4SI admit it. I’m an iPhone App Addict.  My iPhone was so crammed with apps that their icons could not all be displayed individually even on the dozen Home Screens on the phone.

Something had to done. “Unpacking” the stuff I rarely use at when I’m not on the road was the answer.

Here’s how to unclutter your iPhone if, like me, you need a 12-Step Program for Appaholics you have overloaded their iPhones with apps.

Unpack Your iPhone

When you come back from a trip, you don’t throw your suitcase into a closet without emptying out your dirty clothing and anything else that doesn’t need to remain in a “ready-to-go-at-a-moment’s notice” status inside your bag.

So do the same thing with your iPhone when you get home: Dump it out and clean it up.

Follow these steps:

  1. Connect your iPhone to your computer with a USB cable or via Wi-Fi.
  2. Launch iTunes and sure your iPhone is displayed under “Devices” in the left-hand pane.
  3. Click on your iPhone’s name in that pane.
  4. Click on the “Apps” tab on the menu bar right under the Apple logo at the top-center of iTunes.
  5. Put a checkmark in the “Sync Apps” box.
  6. Sort your apps either by Name, Category, or Kind.
  7. Leave a checkmark next to any app that you routinely use, and remove checkmarks for those you never or rarely use.
  8.  Remove the checkmark next to apps for any destination that you won’t be visiting in the near future. Do the same thing with airline, car rental, and hotel apps that you don’t expect to use anytime soon. Ditto for apps for Expedia, Travelocity, Kayak, or other third-party booking apps.
  9. Hit the “Sync” button in the bottom right-hand corner of iTunes.  This will remove the unchecked apps and all of their data from your iPhone, but the apps will still remain in your list of apps in iTunes.When the sync is finished you’ll only have apps on your iPhone that you use when you are not traveling. When you get ready to plan and take your next trip, you can “re-pack” your iPhone just like re-packing your suitcase.
  10. If you identified any apps that you are absolutely sure you will never use again, permanently delete them from iTunes by following the instructions in this CNET article.  
  11. If you still have more apps on your iPhone than will fit on all of the phone’s Home Screens, considering putting at least some related apps (such as all of the camera apps) into a Folder. Each Folder can hold 12 apps, so in addition to the 24 Apple apps that come installed on your phone, you can jam another 204 onto Home Screens if you use folders.  This article in The New York Times gives tips on using Folders.
  12. Re-sync your iPhone if, after doing the first round of app removal, you either permanently deleted apps from iTunes or moved apps into Folders.

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This same 12-step “cleaning” process works with the Apple iPad.

Pack Your iDevice and You’re Good to Go

Packing your iPhone with the apps you need for an upcoming trip is easy once you’ve initially “unpacked” it. To re-pack your iPhone for travel:

  1. Connect your iPhone to your computer with a USB cable or via Wi-Fi.
  2. Launch iTunes and sure your iPhone is displayed under “Devices” in the left-hand pane..
  3. Click on your iPhone’s name in that pane, then click on the “Apps” tab on the menu bar right under the Apple logo at the top-center of iTunes.
  4. Put a checkmark in the “Sync Apps” box.
  5. Sort your apps either by Name, Category, or Kind.
  6. Put a checkmark next to apps for all destinations on your itinerary, apps for airlines you’ll be flying on, car rental companies, ground transportation like trains, buses, taxis, subway systems that you’ll be using, and hotels where you’ll. Ditto for apps for Expedia, Travelocity, Kayak, or other third-party booking apps, if you’ll need them.
  7. Check the iTunes App store for additional apps covering your destinations or transportation needs for the trip.
  8. Hit the “Sync” button in the bottom right-hand corner of iTunes.
  9. Check your iPhone to make sure all of the apps you wanted have, in fact, been synced to it.
  10. Launch each newly installed or re-installed app to make sure it works.
  11. If an app requires you to enter a username and password, look up that information and login using it before you leave home.
  12. Don’t forget to put down your iPhone once in a while and have fun during your trip!

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As with “unpacking,” follow this same process for loading your iPad with the apps you’ll need when you’re off on your adventures!

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