Have apps, will travel. Smarter than ever, our smartphones have given travel a new meaning! These clever apps solve travel issues you did not even know you had. So put the world in your pocket â€“ literally – and set out to explore! CoolblogsÂ lists some great apps that you must have on your phone before your next trip.
1. A translation app
Travelling to a foreign land with no idea how the phonetics works? Take with you a personal language superpower that helps you translate from up to 90 languages. And if the foreign babble is in text and not in spoken form, this funky app allows you to conveniently point your camera at the image for a quick translation! You can also type, draw or speak words into it if you find yourself linguistically challenged on foreign shores. Let nothing sound like ‘Greek’ anymore with Google Translate!
2. A booking app for flights, cabs and hotels
The Skyscanner app is a one stop shop for all things travel. Its complete, intuitive and comprehensive search interface that helps you zero in on cheap flights is quite the delight. Some reviewers like to say that this app reads your mind! Besides flights, it offers cab and hotel booking options too. It doesn’t get better than this for the cheapest flight costs!
3. A trip organiser app
TripIt is your automatic trip itinerary creator. All you have to do – besides pack – is forward all your confirmation emails for flights, car rentals, hotel bookings and dinner reservations if you please â€“ to TripIt â€“ and it will assemble all in a neat itinerary for you. So now you have this calendar drawn up for you without getting into flowcharts. TripIt on your phone before the next holiday? Photo credit: M Car
4. A currency converter app
Easy Currency Converter
Now this is one app on your smart phone that helps you when you’re out shopping, sight-seeing or just counting the monies left before you go partying again ! A useful app, this power packed genie converts up to 180 currencies from around the world; and provides live feeds for exchange rates. You can also use it offline. Pretty much all you need when you are travelling overseas. Here’s the Easy Currency Converter for those struggling with all the numbers in the head Photo credit: Satish Krishnamurthy
5. A free calling app
Video chat back home for free! The best and most reliable platform is Skype â€“ a user friendly way to keep in touch. You can also use it to send unlimited texts, pictures and videos to other Skype users. This helps you keep your international roaming bill down while letting friends and family know what you are up to. So important this one is for us Indians! If you still don’t have it, get Skype to cut down communication costs
6. A local food places app
In 23 countries around the world, you can Zomato your way through food menus, user reviews, ratings and photos. Other than helping you choose your meal for the moment, it also helps in useful stuff like online ordering, table reservation and cashless payment. There is another app that is like Zomato but with a slight gastronomical twist, called Foodspotting. It points you in the right direction in terms of a specific dish you may be salivating for; not restaurant. This app – with extremely well shot photos – is for the real foodies. Download Zomato on your phone. Photo credit: Basheer Tome
7. An events-near-you app
Out on a business trip and wondering what to do with your spare time? Download Nearify and get informed about everything that is happening in a 50 kilometer radius around you. Choose from music festivals, workshops, concerts, shows, events, movies and other entertaining stuff that pops up. Use the category filters provided to narrow down your search results. Work hard, party hard.
8. A cab app
Ride in an Uber cab in over 40 countries around the world. Uber piggy backs on the GPS of your smart phone and sends the nearest cabbie your way. You will also get a message when your pick up arrives. There are convenient options of linking a payment source to the app for cashless transactions. Yay! Get Uber now. Photo credit: Karol Franks
9. A photography app
Are you afflicted by that universal phenomenon that makes people insist on sharing travel pictures instantly? In other words, you havenâ€™t walked out from under the shadow of the Eiffel Tower but all your friends know you are in Paris â€“ then it is Instagram for you. Capture photos and videos on your smart phone, enhance them with filters, caption them, and share on whichever social media site you are hooked on to.
10. A flight tracking app
Plain and simple flight tracking is for newbies â€“ that is what Flightradar24 has proved. With this super app, you can watch planes move in real time – though we are not sure how that helps â€“ along with providing you with airline data for any plane around the world. If you install the paid version, you are up to speed with stuff like the flight route, altitude, speed and other random data for the plane; but you can also point your smart phone at the sky as a plane flies past and identify it! Now you know what to do with your time as you laze on the beach staring at the sky.
11. A reading app
In a readers vs flight company luggage weight regulations duel, readers win! Get this app and you never have to worry about how many books you can carry on your holiday without tipping the scale at the airport. User friendly and very popular, Aldiko Book Reader allows you to browse, download, read, bookmark and even borrow books from public libraries. A simple user interface also helps, plus customisation and filters that personalise the app. Download Aldiko and never be without a page to read Photo credit:Tommy Ellis
12. A visa app
Travel Visa Checker
Despite so many countries easing visa regulations for India, we still need to keep an eye out for visa restrictions!This app that has been designed specifically with us in mind. A handy tool that lets you check visa requirements, embassy information and other details like maximum duration of stay. With a data bank of over 200 countries, Travel Visa Checker is quite the ready reckoner. Travel- check, Travel Visa Checker on your phone- check!
13. A budgeting app
YNAB – You Need A Budget
You donâ€™t have to be a budget traveller to need this app. This budget guru is less about curbing your expenses and more about making you aware of them. This way, you are easily able to keep track of your expenditure on the go; instead of ending each day in your hotel room with a pad, pencil and calculator! Photo credit: 401(K) 2012
14. A WiFi spotting app
This one is a keeper â€“ I mean, what do you do with an app unless you have WiFi? Track free WiFi hot spots on a map in the area you are in. The app also helps you to get to those places â€“ directions and all. And if that was not enough, you get to call the location ahead as well. So no more roaming around streets wondering where to park your freeloader self. Get the WiFi Finder and enjoy staying in touch
15. A packing app
No more packing bloopers! Get PackPoint and be on top of the game. This personal packer customises your packing list after you provide it with necessary particulars like destination, date of travel, activities and events. Voila! You have a check list of stuff that you should not leave without. Another step towards making mom obsolete, hmmm. Leave nothing behind, Photo credit: Craig Sunter
16. A navigation app
Other than being the king of map apps, Google Maps is like a master key for a number of apps â€“ it is not just a navigation genie complete with 3D images, but also helps you with reviews and reservations for dining, shopping and other stuff. A cool feature is its traffic alerts for faster routes. Photo credit: Ram Karthik
17. A fixing-your-jet-lag app (yes, really)
Now this is an app designed specifically and only for the traveller. You can customise this app according to your travel plans including wake up and bed times; and it will advise lighting exposure to help your body adjust to new time zones. Sounds fancy, huh? In simple words, it helps you deal with jet lag.