Who knew that Facebook could be used for more than posting (mildly) inappropriate pictures of yourself and playing Farmville and Zombie Apocalypse? Believe it or not, the world's largest social networking site does more than show you who's dating who; its huge size, outreach and popularity has made it a perfect place to connect, share and obsess over your travel plans.
Here is a look at some of the most useful, imaginative and ingenious Facebook travel applications out there. But, just like Facebook, these apps won't make it easy for you to slip off the map.
As the name suggests, the app lets you quickly build a map of places you've traveled to and display the map on your profile page. A detailed, interactive world map shows everyone where you've been, where you have lived and where you want to go. It also provides fast facts for most countries and states which include: population, GDP, life expectancy, unemployment rate, and a brief national history.
Similar to Where I've been, this app by TripAdvisor lets you select individual cities, and pins are placed on the map for each city that you've visited. The selection process is quick, and you can choose between popular cities or the list on the travel map. The map also automatically zooms and aligns to include all the cities that you've visited.
If you are overseas, this application by Oanda will provide real-time currency conversion exchange rates for most major currencies.
Less of a practical app and more of a 'travel-themed-way-to-waste-time-at-work' app, TravelPod.com has created a game to pinpoint where famous places, cities, and travel destinations are located. Your 'Traveler IQ' will be based on how close you were and how quickly you found the spot. You may play the original world challenge or focus on a specific continent or theme (i.e. World Capitals).
OK, this one isn't an app, it's the online version of the magazine. But, it includes videos and virtual tours along with links to further information on the website and sharing services such as YouTube and Twitter to bring the luxury travel experience alive. For those who love to travel in style, the app brings the magazine's knowledge, luxury hotels, and glamorous resorts to Facebook.
As it strives to compete with Google, Bing has launched an app that allows users to create a wish list of where they want to go. It lets friends suggest new locations, add comments, and share their own wish list. Also, once users want to get going on actual trips, Bing Travel resources are linked in the app, allowing users to quickly go to the flight data, hotel booking, and other nooks of the Bing Travel site.
Especially helpful for those last-minute travelers or unorganized planners, this app helps users create detailed itineraries of their trips from flight confirmation numbers to hotel check-in hours. Users can designate trips as either public or private. If you select public, your trip itinerary is published onto your Facebook wall to notify your friends of your travels.
Short for Globe-trotting, travelers forward their flight and hotel information to be shared with all of their Facebook friends. Gtrot organizes all of your friend's data to show who lives in the cities you are traveling to, who has visited there before, or who will be visiting places at the same time as you. You can then reach out to those people for travel advice or to arrange a get-together. All of your past trips are logged in your history and all of the places you've been are displayed on a Google map.
The Holiday Matchmaker App uses your profile information to match you up to your ideal destination as well as places to eat, drink and visit while there. Based on factors like age, about me, likes, music, friends, education, and everything else, this app promises to find your perfect vacations spot. It's a testament to how advanced technology has come, but also a little creepy.