Q&A services are bubbling up everywhere these days, with Quora a strong leader. Unlike Quora however, the Ask a Nomad iPad app focuses on questions about travel and geographical locations.
The company behind Ask a Nomad, WorldNomads.com, focuses on travel insurance and safety. The service created this iPad app to get people excited about traveling, and also help people find peer information about locations they’re interested in visiting. The app is gorgeous, and extremely simple to use – probably the prettiest travel Q&A app we’ve seen.
The Ask a Nomad service also has a web app if you’d rather ask and answer questions there, but you’d really be missing out on a great iPad experience.
Once you sign-up for Ask a Nomad, you can choose a location and then tap the “Ask a Question” button in the bottom left. There are no extra steps here, it’s quick. Once people start answering your questions, you get push notifications to alert you. Technically, you could get help in real-time making your travel decisions from a community of like-minded travelers. It’s not all about global travel though, you can ask questions about local cities close to where you live.
You’ll notice that the app has a similar design to Twitter’s iPad app, as the tiles overlap, giving an experience where you easily swipe through questions and answers.
If you’re someone who has travelled a lot, you may find the Ask a Nomad app to be a really fun and time-consuming pastime. The app has a recently released feature called “I Know” that lets you add cities and countries that you’ve been too, and then prompts you with questions others have asked about them.
This is a really smart way to get people engaged in conversation about a location, rather than making someone dig through a lot of content on their own. Finding people to ask questions isn’t nearly as hard as finding people to answer them, so Ask a Nomad was built brilliantly in that way.
Overall, the Ask a Nomad app is a great way to get quick answers to burning questions you might have about that big upcoming trip, or that trip you hope to eventually get round to doing.
The one thing that’s missing here is a full social connection between users. You can set up a profile, but there is no way to message other users for more information about them or their questions or answers. To me, this is a letdown because I could see myself getting immersed in the experience for hours, but not without being able to connect to people directly.