Tip o’ the Week #2: Travel times in Outlook

Another Outlook tip this week.

There have been some calls for Microsoft to include a “Travel Time” capability to Outlook, that lets you automatically add getting-to and getting-from time to an existing Outlook appointment. There is one internal addin which integrates Bing maps to calculate the time taken to get from point A to the location of an appointment, and creates appointments in your calendar which bracket the original, for the travel duration as calculated by Bing. It even includes turn by turn directions and a bitmap of the route. There are a few existing, external addins which do similar – see here.

clip_image002Those Brits of you who like to travel by choo-choo will doubtless be familiar with the National Rail enquiries website – and the eagle-eyed may have spotted that the results you get from searching now allow you to Add to Calendar. This opens a file which contains the details of the train times and lets you save it directly into your calendar.

If the above process is a bit too click-happy for you, the National Rail folks have built an Outlook Addin to not only add the times to your calendar, but to allow you to search for train times from there too. Simply create an appointment, right-click on it and you’ll see the National Rail Journey Planner listed as an option – select that, and once you’ve located the appropriate trains, it will add them to your calendar automatically.

Click here for more details and a video demo.

Sadly, at this point, the addin doesn’t appear to work with Outlook 2010. Feel free to contact NRE directly to suggest they update the addin to be compatible with Outlook 2010.

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