YOU ARE READING:10 types of apps you have to download to your phone or tablet before sailing
10 types of apps you have to download to your phone or tablet before sailing
16 Oct 2015

I’m sure you would have thought, especially if you are a novice in sailing, it will be a good idea to equip your smartphone with the appropriate apps so you can use them at any time in order to solve the problems you encounter during sailing on board. Knowing about the weather forecast, follow the correct navigation with a compass app and pleasantly consume your time but without cluttering much bandwidth or battery. Huh? These are the 10 types of applications you have to think of having and have to  prepare before the trip.

apps for weather at sailing

Weather applications

Obviously the first thing that comes to mind is the applications about the weather, so that you could know early enough what will be the plans of the day and how you are going to travel against the wind. Surely you will have connected a laptop so that you can control the data accurately at your sailboat, but it is ideal to try use the tablet as a pleasant control environment of the weather and while you're relaxing,  you can have at a glance the image of next day.

Sometimes knowing the accurate weather may depend on where you have moored and if the local authority has done its job right on it. Therefore you should always be looking if there are local applications available where you are in order to catch the right weather results.

The PredictWind, for serious weather watch or route planning.

RainAlarm, will really eases the way you sail,  especially in places with frequent squalls. Solves as described above, the problem with the weather forecast at local communities. Try to find local meteorological service so that the app can tap into and give you direct response to the mobile phone or tablet.

In addition you can use WeatherTrack, where you can put the desired path that you have in mind to navigate through and automatically the app will show you the weather at real time for all the way. So this will tell you for each time you ask how is the weather.

Finally the PocketGrib, which reads grib files (something that you already doing at the PC)  but at the mobile device all the data, looks more beautiful.


Navigation apps

Obviously what we present here in any way can not replace the mechanical parts or manufacture software of the vessel, although in potential many apps may return better results.

inavx phone app

iNavx, this app as we said before, belongs to those who pay more than expected.


We also use Google Earth and if this sounds strange, Google Earth helps to special cases as it will help locate you the right spot for mooring in real time.

What follows are the sailing apps. Applications that will give you enough help in navigation but also how to behave like a real sailor. Many of these may be free.

"Polarview MX Free", "Navimatics Charts & Tides Free", "Transas iSailor Free", "iSailGPS", "Skipper Free", continuing with android apps like "Navionics Free", "Marine Navigator". See the extended list here

 Finally the "Ship Finder", will show the ships that approaching yours, in real time. And So this is one of the very useful apps for sailing.


Low bandwidth apps

One of the known problems you face on the boat, is that in many places  mobile internet might be weak. In this case or you are waiting for your nerves to break, or you accept the situation that you are on holidays and the main goal is to dive into the sea.

Nevertheless you should be prepared. You have to download mobile or tablet stuff that you can better use with some or no internet.

 opera mini for phone while sailing

OperaMini. The browser that compresses everything so that to serve in a lower analysis but in an acceptable way to read. By mediating, OperaMini,let you surf the internet and request less data than the real pages uses. So even in lower resolution you can see everything equally quickly and cheaper (limited bandwidth).


The "Wiki Offline" is also a tool that gives you the solution when you want to search for all those things that usually looking at google, but on a sailing trip it is not always easy to catch signal (not bandwidth at all). You use it instead of google.

Almost in the same way the "Pocket" and "Offline Pages" helps save the page you are viewing whenever you navigate online. So you have the opportunity to see them at the second time that while you are on vacation with the sailing boat.

 sailing with kids means you need some phone apps

Offline entertainment and Apps for your kids not to be bored

The time that passes on a sailing boat, applies to the theory of relativity. The silence is enough (or more than enough) and surely you will have too much time to consume playing or reading. This will happen to your children too, but more often :-).

You can download e-readers and have the time to read entire books. Very famous devices/apps for ebooks reading are iBook, Adobe or Kindle.

You can also download video players in  app version like the MoliPlayer, in which you can see movies that will surely be a priority need also for your children and their cartoons movies. In the same way you can use VLC Player as an app available for all devices. Something you have to be careful with is the storage that will be needed.

You can use apps for sailing or navigation apps (as described above) in order to entertain your children, so you have to try it that too.


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Apps to keep you organised

Within the small space of the boat interior, certainly in the first sailing hours you are going to start looking for lost things. Also in no time the vacation plan may change many times because it depends of the weather or other unpredictable factors. Unless of course you take care of it before getting on board by downloading the appropriate apps.

For example the What's On My Boat,  will certainly help you  put restrictions on board chaos. Definitely does what it says:

• Know what you've got

• Know where it is

• Keep track of essential items

• Save time when you need to find something

• Help save money by not buying items you already own

• Free up valuable space

These apps apart from the organising the interior will help you with the savings of your holiday.

eStorage even if it is not exclusively made for boats, gives you the same solution.

Staying in touch apps

Because of the isolated feeling of the sailing, it is good to have some apps to communicate with the mainland. Skype, Viber, Vsee (designed for low bandwidth).


Consider of Social media. Help to inform that you are still alive and making others jealous!

Saving Memories applications

Something that you need in any type of holidays  are the way to capture beautiful, relaxing, sweet or your happy moments. I think mobile by himself has the similar functions by default,  also social media like Instagram, will help you take some wonderful filtered photos.


Translation apps

Another important type of app is translation apps. If, for example, you have moored at Greece and want to do a bus tour in Athens, you need to have the means to communicate with locals on how to get there. What can help you is an app for translating foreign languages. Free is the tool of google translation but also iTranslate, which theoretically accepts voice commands so that the translation can be done in real time.


Food apps for quick recipes ;-)

And finally because the food in sailing is a difficult  case you should also have the appropriate apps to retrieve food recipes. But if you travel in Greece forget cookbooks and apps. Go out and eat that easy. Click to see how Greek food is in sailing.

Certainly many of the above you may already use in other forms. Board games, navigation tools installed on the boat, books hardcopies, recipes in your mind, but the use of a tablet, or a mobile device can relieve you.

Before you start your trip with the sailing yacht, even before you ll be informed on how you will have a successful trip sailing  ,try to organise your mobile device to be your main trip advisor.



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