People Are Downloading These Apps to Prepare for Hurricanes

Photo by GERBEN VAN ES/DUTCH DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE/HANDOUT/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock
Photo by GERBEN VAN ES/DUTCH DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE/HANDOUT/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock

Tech Editor

When Hurricane Harvey battered the southern coast of Texas last month, the scenes of devastation were heartbreaking. Lives were lost, homes destroyed, and whole cities were left underwater. Among the chaos, a number of people turned to a few apps in an effort to stay in touch, track the storm, and stay safe. As Hurricane Irma cripples the Bahamas and heads toward Florida, here are the apps worth downloading if you’re preparing for the worst.

Zello

Zello is a walkie-talkie app which is currently atop the U.S. App Store after it was used extensively in the rescue efforts in Texas. The app does need a Wi-Fi or 4G connection, but helps people stay in touch when phone lines are jammed and mobile service is patchy. Many groups, including the Cajun Navy, used the app to coordinate their efforts in Texas.

The app works very simply and helps people get in touch with friends and relatives in the case of an emergency. You can send voice messages and photos through the app as well.

FEMA

A screenshot of the main menu of the FEMA app as of June 2016

Rome2Rio

Rome2Rio mobile app

For some unlucky people, the only way of dealing with the hurricane is to get out of its way, and that can mean booking travel at the same time as everyone else in your area. Rome2Rio gives you the easiest route from one place to another, whether that’s by plane, bus, train, ferry or car. In the chaos of an evacuation, this app could prove invaluable.

Hurricane by American Red Cross

Hurricane, the app from the American Red Cross

There may be some fairly solid reasons not to donate to the Red Cross during a disaster, but using the organization’s Hurricane app could still be extremely useful. The app gives you real time updates on weather, but also gives you an easy way to check on the welfare of people you know. This app makes it simpler to track than the likes of Facebook, which also has a check-in feature.

Gas Buddy

Another app that has rocketed up the app store rankings this hurricane season in the U.S. is Gas Buddy. If you’re evacuating with a car, or even staying and looking to get around, the info found on this app could be crucial. Gas Buddy tells you where the nearest gas station is, whether or not it has fuel, and the price of the fuel. After Florida Governor Rick Scott told people in the state to download the app (although he referred to it as Go Buddy) the number of downloads increased emphatically.

The Gas Buddy app
landscape with balloons floating in the air

KEEN TO EXPLORE THE WORLD?

Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world

Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.

Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.

Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.

Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.

We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.

Winter Sale Offers on Our Trips

Incredible Savings

X
Edit article