Your summer holidays are not supposed to be hard. They should be relaxing, stress-free and enjoyable. So whether you’re off surfing, sunning or shopping, we’ve got you covered with some dead handy apps to download.
With the plethora of apps now on the market, you can translate the local language, look up the local food and map your every holiday route. So, we’ve looked around and found seven apps you really should consider downloading before you set foot on a plane.
1. Google Translate
Learning the local lingo is always a good way to get a grounding while abroad, so let’s start with an obvious one. The Google Translate app is wonderful. I’d say it was the best translation app out there but, to be honest, there’s no way I’d know that because I’ve never needed to trade up. It’s basic workings are similar to the web tool that is so often relied upon.
2. Offline Maps
When abroad, it’s usually not advised to keep your data turned on on your smartphone as it can prove quite costly. But you still need to know how to get around and massive, pull-out maps are objects that often add stress, not reduce it.
So how about you check out the offline maps that are knocking about on iOS and Android. Often they are city specific. So if you’re off to Paris (iOS, Android), Madrid (iOS, Android), New York (iOS, Android) or wherever, it’s worth the download.
3. Local transport
Much like the offline maps, knowing public transport in the city or area you visit can prove a lifesaver. There are numerous options out there, depending on where you’re going on holidays. One I can vouch for is the Tube Map London Underground (iOS, Android), but again there are options in most major cities, like Berlin (iOS, Android).
4. ATM locator
Okay, this is a bit of a niche, but a handy one at that. How often are you abroad and you just can’t find where the nearest ATM is? In Ireland, we’re blessed with ATMs every 10 metres in most places but, when abroad, banks are a bit more reluctant to hand over cash in every nook and cranny along the road. So, if you happen to be in the US, UK, Canada or Australia on your travels, Allpoint (iOS, Android) may help. Any banks on its network should appear. If this is of no use to you, find the major bank in the city you are going to and download its equivalent. Should do the job.
5. Stop feeling the burn
The odds are that your summer holidays will be somewhere sunny. Perhaps nowhere near a city, rendering many of the previous apps as pretty useless. Well, then, how about you keep track of how much sunshine you’re getting, so you know when to top up that suncream. Sun Shield on Android is only average, if anything a little below. Sunscreen Reminder on iOS is a bit better, logging in alerts to keep you topped up.
6. Surf forecasting
If you’re going somewhere coastal, with a plan for surfing, it’s probably worth keeping track of the waves. There are actually quite a few options out there – thanks, science! On Android and iOS, the Glassy Surf Report is probably your best bet. Its makers claim 130,000 surfers have downloaded the app, which, when managed right, makes for acute improvements. A 4.7 rating is pretty positive.
Okay, this is an obvious one, but sometimes you just want to know what’s a decent place to visit. Or, more importantly, what’s not worth the effort. TripAdvisor is a wonderfully comprehensive option for this. Rankings for food, hotels or attractions in pretty much every corner of the globe, you won’t go too far wrong (iOS, Android).
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Main image of perfectly realistic beach party via Shutterstock