This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

I’m admittedly a big Apple user. I’m currently typing this post on my iMac as my iPhone 6 Plus buzzes in the background from activity and I’ll probably go home tonight and watch some AppleTV while surfing Facebook on my Macbook Air. For many of us, Apple is a part of life- especially when we travel. I once tried to switch to an Android phone and while the technology was arguably better and more reliable (at least battery-wise), it was such a hassle to sync my computers and music, that I eventually switched back to the iPhone and have actually been really happy with my 6 Plus.

The Apple Watch comes in a standard, sport, and edition series.
The Apple Watch comes in a standard, sport, and edition series.

Today, Apple announced the Apple Watch, which I haven’t been that excited or interested in, until today when I really thought about how it would make my life easier- especially when it comes to travel. Pre-orders begin April 10, 2015 and it officially launches April 24, 2015. There are three models:

Apple Watch Sport: $349- $399 which comes in either space grey or silver, similar to the iPhone 6, all with a band made of rubber material.

Apple Watch: $549- $1,099 which has a stainless steel finish and a crystal cover for scratch protection. The type of band affects the cost of the watch (sport material vs leather vs steel)

Apple Watch Edition: $10,000+ and comes in either Rose or 18k Gold

Key Features
To me, Apple Watch’s most unique feature is the “taptic engine”, which can slightly tap your wrist as an alert. I see this being extremely useful when traveling and your flight is delayed or gate changes. I often get those alerts on my iPhone, but even when it is on vibrate, I often don’t feel the taps and miss some important alerts. I’ll be curious to know if you’ll be able to wear it through TSA security- most watches don’t set off metal detectors, but I’m guessing the Apple Watch may. Even so, you can usually wear a watch when going through the full body scanner, so it could be nice to be connected at all times. Even though security should only take a few minutes, if you’re about to close a deal, it could be nice to stay connected while going through security.

Apple Watch
The most important aspect of the Apple Watch is the health and fitness angle.

Health and Wellness
The most important aspect of the Apple Watch is the health and fitness angle. I recently started wearing a Fitbit Charge and it opened my eyes to my real levels of daily activity and sleep. The latter is a huge thing when traveling. It is extremely important to get sleep in general, but especially when crossing timezones and traveling for work. Road warriors understand the grind of sleep deprivation and stress and its the cause of many illnesses, including some nasty ones like shingles. Understanding your sleep and monitoring it is huge and the Apple Watch has that capability, plus much more insight like how much you’ve moved and helps set goals for activities and calories burned. There are more and more studies showing how negative sitting can be (which is inevitable for travelers) and the Apple Watch helps visualize activity.

Travel Apps

The Apple Watch will serve as your room key at many Starwood properties including the W Singapore- Sentosa Cove.
The Apple Watch will serve as your room key at many Starwood properties including the W Singapore- Sentosa Cove.

Starwood Preferred Guest– This is perhaps the one I’m most interested in- having the ability to open a hotel room with your watch. I truly believe the time is here to get rid of actual room keys, which can easily get deactivated or simply stop working. I like where SPG is going with mobile check-in and skipping the front desk all-together. Skipping the line of having to talk to a chatty (or clueless) front desk agent is valuable. Yes, you can still do this with a phone, but having the Apple Watch and being able to automatically turn a door-knob would be amazing.

Uber– There isn’t information on this App Store yet about the Uber app, but I suspect you’ll be able to hail an Uber with the click of a button. Hopefully the GPS is better than the iPhone, but having it on your wrist would be awesome, especially if you have Verizon and can’t use data while on a phone call.

With the Apple Watch, you
With the Apple Watch, you’ll be able to see all your American Airlines flight info on your wrist.

American Airlines– American is the launch airline partner and it appears that you’ll be able to get flight, gate and baggage information, but not actually get your mobile boarding pass. My guess is that the Apple Watch screen is too small for the current boarding pass scanners, but I’ve followed up with AA to see if that is something that will be added in the future and they’ve simply said they’ll share more information when the Apple Watch launches on April 24, 2015.

Key Concerns

The biggest concern I see is battery life. Apple touts an 18 hour battery life, but for super-users like myself, I’m nervous that the Apple Watch will need to be charged frequently and it will be annoying to have to take it off in-flight or at night (when you should be monitoring your sleep) to do so. In contrast, my Fitbit lasts for over a week, but of course has a fraction of the capability. I’d love to see a several day battery-life- 18 hours is nothing, especially when traveling across the globe.

I’m also interested to see the actual size and design in person. The high-resolution images look nice, but with all jewelry, you need to see it in person to see how it looks on you. For many, watches are fashion and part of their identity, so having only three main models that many people will have loses the individuality that many people like in a watch. As time goes on, I bet there will be many improvements to the Apple Watch an hopefully some intersecting designer partnerships.

But overall, as a traveler, I’m excited about the Apple Watch and the possibilities it has to improve the travel experience and help people better understand their activity and sleep- something most busy travelers struggle with understanding.

The Platinum Card® from American Express

The American Express Platinum card has some of the best perks out there: cardholders enjoy the best domestic lounge access (Delta SkyClubs, Centurion Lounges, and Priority Pass), up to a $200 annual airline fee credit as well as up to $200 in Uber credits, and mid-tier elite status at Marriott and Hilton. Combined with the 60,000 point welcome offer -- worth $1,200 based on TPG's valuations -- this card is a no-brainer for frequent travelers. Here are 5 reasons you should consider this card, as well as how you can figure out if the annual fee makes sense for you.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
  • Enjoy Uber VIP status and free rides in the U.S. up to $15 each month, plus a bonus $20 in December. That can be up to $200 in annual Uber savings.
  • 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel.
  • 5X Membership Rewards points on prepaid hotels booked on
  • Enjoy access to the Global Lounge Collection, the only credit card airport lounge access program that includes proprietary lounge locations around the world.
  • Receive complimentary benefits with an average total value of $550 with Fine Hotels & Resorts. Learn More.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit, up to $200 per calendar year in baggage fees and more at one qualifying airline.
  • Get up to $100 in statement credits annually for purchases at Saks Fifth Avenue on your Platinum Card®. Enrollment required.
  • $550 annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Intro APR on Purchases
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
See Terms
Recommended Credit
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Know before you go.

News and deals straight to your inbox every day.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.