How tech has changed the way we travel…
In 2008, when I was still bleary-eyed from my flight to Beijing, I navigated to my hostel through the basic Chinese I had learned via the language CD set, Earworms (which I still swear by to this day). Looking at my notes to catch the correct bus, I then pulled out a map to guide myself to my hostel across the frozen lake in HouHai and eventually found my way. Fast forward several years, having freshly arrived in Vietnam, with smartphone in hand, simply tapping an icon that says “Grab”, typing in the address to my destination, selecting that I will be paying via Grabpay and press “book” and in only moments a vehicle appears which will take me to my destination. Today I can order food via the app Vietnammm, check my Vietnamese language ability through Microsoft Translate, and find any place I’m looking for via Google Maps. The changes are not so different over the border in China, it has been the technology changing over the years. Technology has leaped in the last few years making travel a nearly effortless task. With this in mind, I am going to list off RareJaunt’s top 10 travel apps (in no particular order):
Google Maps: No need to ever be lost again. This is perhaps the most important. Even if you don’t have access to internet data when on the go, download the map of the place in question when you have access to wifi. When you are on the move, the GPS will let you know where you are, and the map (as already downloaded) will guide you.
Guides by Lonely Planet – they have a great selection of free guidebooks for iconic cities, such as Bangkok, Vienna, Buenos Aires… along with a map, list of places to go, foods to eat, and phrases to make life simpler.
Mondly Languages: This is for anyone wanting to actually learn the language of the place they’re going to. Somewhat similar to Rosetta Stone, it is a fraction of the price. We paid $20 to have access to about 20 different languages.
Airbnb: For those who prefer to self-cater of have the experience of actually living in a place. We have had such good experiences through Airbnb – usually the prices are more reasonable, and some of the accommodations are unique and beautiful.
Instagram: As much as I am not a fan of the “influencer” accounts, you can be inspired to visit places you hadn’t thought of merely by typing in a few hashtags – #vietnam (beautiful images of the country will appear, and you may find yourself planning to visit places within the country you had never previously heard of).
Skype: Back in the day I used to purchase an international phone-card to keep in touch with loved ones. Today it is so simple – instant messaging,smartphones, video calls! I have been a fan of Skype since the beginning.
Microsoft OneNote: For keeping track of your travels – planning ahead. Create your own personal notebooks to organize your travels. Upload flight itineraries, hotel reservations, emails, tickets and have them not only available for quick access, but synced to all of your devices. Easy!
We hope you enjoyed our top ten must-have travel apps. What are yours?
Did we miss any amazing apps? What are your top travel apps? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org