Gadling app review – GateGuru for the iPhone helps you find and rate airport amenities

I’m a huge fan of any iPhone app that can help make my time at the airport more enjoyable. GateGuru is such an app. Think of GateGuru as an online airport guide meets Yelp, meets social networking.

The basic concept behind GategGuru is that it can help you find amenities at the airport. Its list is extremely comprehensive. When you start the app, it uses your current location to pick the closest airport (or the airport you are at right now). Obviously, you can manually select airports if you need information on an upcoming trip or segment.

Once in an airport selection, you simply pick the terminal (for multi-terminal airports), then you are presented with a list of all the amenities. As I mentioned – the list is fantastic. You’ll find the common stuff like restaurants and shops, but also ATM’s, mailboxes, computer charging stations and frequent flier lounges. You can also narrow down the results by selecting food, shops or services as your search category.

You can search for these locations by name, and by gate, as each of the entries describes exactly where you’ll find it. So, if you are sitting at gate B11, you can enter the gate number, and find exactly what it around you.

Once in an entry, you can view its location, (available) photo, rating, category and any user submitted reviews. That user submission portion of the app is one of its best features, and a sure way to kill some time at the airport. Just had a bad beer at the airport bar? Rate the establishment from inside the app, and share it with the world. Found an awesome eatery? Describe what made it so cool, and help fellow travelers.
If you find an amenity that isn’t listed in GateGuru, you can add it. The screen for adding stuff is easy to navigate, and all you need to provide is its location, category, name and whether it is pre-security or not.

The social network portion of the GateGuru shares what you do from inside the app. So, if you view an entry, or update a rating, it’ll submit that action to Twitter and/or Facebook. If you’d rather not share this information, you can enable and disable it with just one click. Every time you rate something, you earn points – and those points are displayed in a “high flyer’ ranking – this of course helps turn the whole thing into a fantastic competition, and should ensure the app gets even more people submitting worthy reviews and ratings.

The only feature I really could use is a graphical map of the airport, and a way to determine the time/distance to the location I selected.

GateGuru is just $1.99, and as with most iPhone apps, it is really well designed. Even if you don’t want to participate in the rating/review portion, your two bucks gets you a very comprehensive airport guide.You can learn more about the app on the site of the developer, or you can jump right to the app store and purchase it, I can highly recommend adding it to your “must have” collection of iPhone travel apps.