Five essential travel apps for day one of the iPad

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The Independent Online

Apple's iPad hits the shelves on April 3, with developers scrambling to get apps out for the much hyped device.

Approximately 15,000 apps are set to be on the App Store from day one - here, the Relaxnews pick of must-have travel tools to play with on your shiny new iPad.

Dash Four
Foursquare comes to the iPad in a large-screen format - it's not the official Foursquare but in the meantime, it's the next best thing. Users can view badges, mayorships and friends on the large screen interface.

Gilt Groupe
Flash sales are one of the best ways to nab travel bargains. Fans of US flash sale site Gilt Groupe can already download the official iPad app, which features a split screen display allowing members to hop from sale to sale and view detailed photos. Even better, the invitation-only site will grant instant Gilt Groupe membership to all iPad owners who download the app and is also giving a $10 credit to the first 10,000 iPad owners who register for new membership through the app.

Kayak Flights
Kayak allows users on the go to view flight status and use the site's metasearch capabilities. It'll show you flights and hotels on the same page in a large screen interface.

FlightTrack - Live Flight Status Tracker
This app has already proved itself essential for any frequent traveler on the iPhone, and has now been ported to iPad. See the status of inbound or outbound flights, delays, cancellations using large zoomable maps. Using this on your iPad might make that flight delay a little more bearable.

Lonely Planet 1000 Experiences
This app combines Lonely Planet's stunning photography with its knowledge base, providing a categorized guide to the best global experiences. The app contains beautiful images, captivating video and insights from Lonely Planet authors.

World Atlas HD
National Geographic's World Atlas provides a full atlas, along with interactive features, to allow travelers to explore the countries around them on the iPad's pinch-and-zoom interface.