Going on a vacation? Looking to make traveling a breeze? The team at Venture with Impact, a startup that arranges accommodation, workspace and volunteer experiences for diverse groups of remote professionals, shares our favorite travel apps to make your next getaway or travel experience easier!
WHERE-TO NEXT APPS
Google Trips app can pull reservations from your email — it can add hotel bookings, car rental details, and more. In doing so, it creates an underlying framework for your trip without you having to do much. Once it’s set up, you can browse through the app to look at curated day-trips, suggested and popular places to visit or eat, and you can plan your whole day. Trips lets you store this data offline as well, so you can access your itinerary and important information at any time.
TripAdvisor is a catch-all app when it comes to travel abroad. You can quickly peruse millions of reviews, opinions, videos, and photos pertaining to just about anything related to your trip — bars, restaurants, hotels, airlines, and more. This is great for getting your feet wet when you first arrive…next step, immersion!
Yelp has officially become the Yellow Pages of restaurant and bars, and its use extends not just to the U.S., but all around the world. Its most powerful feature is the sheer number of reviews housed in the app — it’s an excellent resource for when you’re looking to hit some of the best spots in the country you’re visiting abroad. Yelp also offers hours of operation, a phone number for listings, and sometimes even a menu, so you can be as prepared as possible before heading out. Not available in all countries!
Time Out is a great dictionary of ideas of things to do in cities around the world. With coverage in many different countries, this app covers everything from bars, restaurants, attractions, and events. The event finder is a particularly useful tool, giving you the ability to find the most popular events going on around you. You can also book restaurants through the app and create a customized travel abroad guide for your vacation.
APPS FOR SPEAKING THE LANGUAGE
The app provides translations between 103 different languages, allowing you to listen to translations out loud and translate dictation and your own handwriting on-screen. You can star your favorite words or phrases for offline access, or view dictionary results for a single word or phrase.
Duolingo offers beginner level language courses, but it’s also a great tool for those looking to brush up on a language. You can also chat with bots in select languages; this can be particularly helpful when you’re trying to learn the phrases you’re likely to use the most when traveling abroad. You can take placement tests to move up levels to tougher sections.
Memrise has more languages than Duolingo, and the app also uses mnemonics to help you memorize words and phrases. The app adapts to your learning style over time, and best of all, there’s a pro version that lets you unlock even more features, such as an offline mode.
If you’re traveling through multiple countries in a short period, it can be a little tricky to keep track of the time. Circa is a beautiful and simple timezone tracker that lets you check what time it is where you are and where you’re heading. The app will show times that overlap where both parties should be awake, if you’re trying to keep in touch with people back home.
WhatsApp is an easy way to keep in touch with people back home. You’ll still need a data connection or WiFi to be able to send messages. Venture with Impact participants and staff use WhatsApp as our virtual hangout.
On a business trip? Expensify will solve all your expense-related problems. Create a report and start adding every receipt — you can do this manually or use your phone’s camera to scan the receipt and have the app fill information in. Once your trip is complete, all you need to do is email the full report to your supervisor — they’ll see every receipt and a quick breakdown of how much you need to be reimbursed.
In your travels abroad, you may find that certain countries block select websites, like Facebook and Google. One way to get around them is to use a VPN, or a virtual private network, to securely access those blocked sites. New to VPNs? Check out The Ultimate Beginners Guide to VPNs for a comprehensive and up-to-date breakdown. Hotspot Shield doesn’t require you to log in and has a wide coverage that includes 17 countries. Your information is completely private, and connecting to a VPN is dead simple — it just requires a single tap.
Splittr is geared up to help you split bills for traveling abroad, providing a simple platform to share costs between friends. You can enter expenses as you go, including who paid what, and the app will do the rest. A nice touch is that different currencies are supported and you can mix currencies without having to do the conversion yourself.
Going somewhere hot? Wolfram helps you manage your time in the sun safely and offers the most detailed information to keep you informed. You enter your skin type and it calculates how long you can spend sunning yourself before getting burned, based on the time of day, where you are, and the strength of the sunscreen you’re wearing. It also provides UV forecasts for your location.
With Foodspotting you can find the dishes you crave the most in any restaurant, from dumplings to the juiciest burgers. The photos, at least, are totally to die for! Learn from what your friends, experts, and foodspotters love to eat and share.
Content Guru at Venture with Impact