Maria Shriver

Apps I Live By: AFAR media co-founder Joe Diaz

Image: Joe Diaz
Joe Diaz Dani Vernon / AFAR Media

For most people, work doesn’t involve scaling dunes in Namibia’s Namib Desert, hiking along the coastline in Zihuatanejo, Mexico, or touring fine art museums in St. Petersburg, Russia. But for Joe Diaz, co-founder and chief product officer of travel magazine and media hub AFAR, globe-trotting is both his passion and his profession. Launched in 2009, AFAR has become its own hotspot destination for exacting travelers seeking authentic, eye-opening, and unconventional experiences around the globe. Last year, AFAR magazine was named “Hottest Travel Magazine” by Ad Week and today AFAR media attracts over 1 million users worldwide.

Here, the Palm Desert, California native – who you’ll never see checking a bag – shares the apps that help him connect with locals abroad and stay in touch with loved ones back home.

To Connect: LinkedIn

Most people don't associate LinkedIn with travel, but I actually love using this site to connect with locals who share my passions and profession. I like to use it as a way to meet locals prior to any trip I take - business or pleasure. It's a great way to have a more authentic experience utilizing local knowledge and expertise.

To Stay in Touch: Skype

I love staying connected to my friends and family while traveling. Skype lets me stay in touch whenever and wherever I am in the world, and the best part – it’s free!

To Get Around: Uber

For someone like me who travels every day, catching a cab can sometimes be a process. I love how Uber provides me with an easy and civilized ride to and from the airport while traveling in style.

To Navigate: Google Maps

I love being able to get to and from my location in the quickest and most convenient way possible. Google maps enables me to get the most out of my journey, whether it is for business or pleasure and navigate the city I am in without getting lost.

To Discover: AFAR

AFAR allows me to go deeper in a destination by functioning as my "on-the-go" guide. When searching for experiences, I can find them quickly because of AFAR’s geo-tag capability and then save the ones I love into customized lists that I share with my friends and family.

For more information and inspiration visit