Gone are the days of trying to squeeze umpteen maps, guidebooks or currency converter gadgets into your luggage – now all you need are travel apps.
The number of travel apps available has increased considerably over the last year alone. There are apps for maps, apps to help you plan your trip, apps for currency conversion and apps with language translators and phrasebooks. Wherever you’re travelling in Europe, there’s likely to be an app available for you. All you need is an iPhone, Blackberry or other compatible android phone to use them on. Here are four of the top Europe travel apps.
London Tube Map App
If you’re visiting in London, then this nifty little app will help you navigate around the city with ease. There are two good versions available – one is a basic map, which is completely free to download, and the other is a deluxe version, which has the benefit of a journey planner and updated information about tube line statuses. The deluxe version does incur a small cost, but only £0.59.
London Tube Map (Basic) app
London Tube Deluxe app
One of the age old questions when you’re dining out is how much to tip your wait person. Different parts of the world have very different ideas about what is considered an appropriate tip. In order to get it right requires that you know the local customs and that you are able to appy basic math skills. When you’ve just finished a delicious meal and a few drinks, the last thing you want to do is to work out the proper tip. This little application does the work for you.
With just a few clicks, it can be customized very easily to the appropriate tip percentage, local customs and the number of diners in your group. The desired tip is worked out super quickly, plus you can save the cost of your transactions (great if you want to keep track of how much you’ve spent on meals on holiday) and of how much you’ve tipped (which helps you know what tip to give elsewhere in the same locale). The BigTipper app is compatible with iPhone, iPod touch and iPads and is only £1.19 to download.
Lonely Planet Phrasebooks
The famous Lonely Planet Phrasebooks have been developed into an iPhone app and are great to use instead of lugging around a phrasebook. Whilst they don’t contain the full version of the book (that would be a lot to scroll through), you do get all the essentials and some very useful phrases to help you get by in most all European countries. There are 31 different language phrasebooks currently available for download, all for £5.99.
Lonely Planet Phrasebooks app
Currency conversion is another issue that can be confusing when you’re travelling abroad, especially when you’re not accoustomed to the currency you’re dealing with. XE.com is a popular website where you can convert currencies and now it has an equally useful app available.
This free app allows you to convert over 180 currencies whilst you’re out and about, including plenty of European currencies. It’s simple to use and allows you to see the conversion rate for your home currency against the currency in the country you are visiting, so you’re in control of how much you’re spending.
XE Currency Converter app