No travel blog? No problem. Shoot, group and annotate your smartphone pics into a travel journal-style post that you can share on Twitter and Facebook or by email.

Name: HipGeo

Available for: iPhone, iPad, Android (photos only, videos coming soon)

What it does: The app uses geo-technology to organize your photos (and videos for iPhone/iPad) into a virtual travel story. You can also make your journals public and follow other travelers' HipGeo photos and posts.

Cost: Free

What's hot: The feature HipGeo has dubbed "mapmation" is cool. Watch your multiple-day trip unfold on a map, point by point, experience by experience. Then open it up to see your pics and anecdotes. You can load your photos using the HipGeo app and then write longer entries with your free account on its website. You can also shoot and include video straight from the app (but not upload videos taken from your smartphone from the past ... yet).

What's not: If you're uploading photos from your phone, the process is quick. But if you're taking photos with a digital camera and your smartphone, you need to upload them one at a time using the website, which is a longer process. Also, there's no way to change the order of pics once they're uploaded, so start with a good beginning photo.

Worth it: The better photos you take and more time you spend learning the full capabilities of this travel app, the more brag-worthy your posts will be for sharing on Facebook and Twitter. Start practicing before you take your big trip so it's second nature by the time you hit the road.

(c)2012 Los Angeles Times

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