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This article was published on November 24, 2010

The Best Free iPhone Apps To Use On Thanksgiving

The Best Free iPhone Apps To Use On Thanksgiving
Courtney Boyd Myers
Story by

Courtney Boyd Myers

Courtney Boyd Myers is the founder of audience.io, a transatlantic company designed to help New York and London based technology startups gr Courtney Boyd Myers is the founder of audience.io, a transatlantic company designed to help New York and London based technology startups grow internationally. Previously, she was the Features Editor and East Coast Editor of TNW covering New York City startups and digital innovation. She loves magnets + reading on a Kindle. You can follow her on Facebook, Twitter @CBM and .

Ah, the day of turkey-stuffing, gourd decorating, belt loosening and political conversations is upon us, Thanksgiving is here. And what else could you be more grateful for than your precious iPhone?

Twitter? Just kidding. Whether you’re driving up the East Coast to see family or hopping on a plane to meet the in-laws, having an iPhone handy can make the day a lot less stressful. With Apple’s mobile phone, you have access to a rich source of travel information, recipe guidance, wine selections and family photo options. Here is our round up of the best free iPhone apps for a fantastic Thanksgiving.


TripIt is a priceless (albeit free) app for busy travelers who are flying this holiday season. The app automatically syncs your e-mailed itineraries with your TripIt organizer and puts all your travel plans right on your iPhone no matter where your travel was booked. If you haven’t already synced your Google and TripIt accounts, simply forward travel confirmation emails to [email protected] to build a trip itinerary. TripIt’s loyalty tracking feature is a great spot to keep all of your frequent flier miles. The app also includes a social feature, which lets you know when and where you’re friends are traveling and if your trips overlap. It’s hands down the most recommended app for frequent jet-setters, but the ads can get a little annoying.

Call me a purist but GoogleMaps has never let me down. This is a great app if you’re planning on driving this Thanksgiving. The app gives you step-by-step driving directions; lets you plan a trip with multiple stops; check live traffic conditions (in select cities) and drag ‘n drop points to customize your route. You can easily pull in saved addresses from contacts too incase you haven’t memorized M&D’s address.

Late to Dinner? While we do not condone breaking the law at TNW, we certainly all know the need for speed and Trapster is the ultimate road demon’s app. The highly app alerts you as you approach speed traps, red lights, speed cameras, police check points, accidents and other roadway hazards. It operates like a social network reporting information from over 8 million users.

The Meal

Epicurious Recipes & Shopping List
Epicurious has always been my favorite website for browsing recipes and their app is even better. Open the app and the homepage features recipes for the current season. The app includes 30,000 recipes displayed in slideshow format and content from Bon Appétit and the late Gourmet magazine (Conde Nast publishes the app). You can search by main ingredient, meal/course, cuisine, dietary consideration (including vegan/vegetarian recipes), dish type, occasion, keyword and most popular recipes, many with images. The best part of the app is the ability to add ingredients to a shopping list or email the list to your mom. N.B. Epicurious apps tend to be heavy in deliciousness (butter), so if you’re on the South Beach diet, it’s best to avoid. But if you’re looking to indulge, these recipes will please any set of in-laws. You don’t need to just take my word, this one is an award winner! ASME named it the “Best Mobile Application of 2009.”

Either while you’re out hunting for the bird or while you are in the kitchen wanting to hopelessly annoy your relatives, check out Free Turkey Calls, a sound app of fun turkey noises.


Hello Vino is an easy to use and very informative app. If you already know what you’re eating, it will suggest a wine. But if you have a wine already, it will also suggest a food! The app gives you a wide range of selections and sorts them by acclaim, random and great value. Extra features include wines for special occasions such as housewarming gifts and wines that meet taste profiles like earthy or spicy. To pair with “Turkey and Gravy,” Hello Vino suggested Pinot Noir, a red wine with red berry, cherry and truffles.

At The Table

If the conversation starts to get political, it’s probably time to pull out the Thanksgiving Jokes app, which is exactly what it sounds like. “What did the turkey say to the man who tried to shoot it?”…. “Liberty, equality and bad aim for all!” … Yeah, sometimes you get what you pay for.

Okay, The jokes are now over and Grandpa is telling his story about walking to school in barefeet, uphill both ways. Are you getting bored? Try Turkey Hunt, a fun game where you can… hunt turkeys!

If dinner happens to overlap with your favorite football game and you really dying to check the score, use ESPN’s Scorecenter, which is the best app for checking on your team while you’re playing nice at the table. The app features a fantastic, intuitive interface and coverage is near real-time. Push notifications are the move if you don’t want to get busted constantly checking your phone. (Big thanks to my brother for this addition.)

Family Photos


There are hundreds of ways to take and share photos on your iPhone. But Instagram is without a doubt my favorite for snapping quality pictures, adding fun old-school looking filters and instantly sharing with friends via Twitter, Flickr, Facebook, Tumblr and Foursquare and the Instagram friend stream. The app, which only hit the market in early October, is rumored to already have 1,000,000 users.

(The first photo was taken with CatPaint, also highly recommended.)

We wish you a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday and hope that you are grateful for all the joys that enter your life on a daily basis, particularly your dedicated writers at TNW. :)

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