Traveling abroad? Get excited. This will be one of the most rewarding experiences of your life. To make sure your journey is all that it can be, see our 9 tips for smarter travel.
For Keeping in Touch
- Viber - Avoiding hefty international data fees just got easier. Viber, an instant messaging app compatible with almost any device and network, lets users make free phone calls and send texts and pictures. The catch? The person you’re talking to must also be a registered Viber user. Might want to give mom and dad a quick lesson in using the app before you depart.
- A Revolar Wearable - If you're on the move and don't have time to update the 'rents like you promised you would, send them a Check-in with our Revolar wearable. The wearable lets you communicate or send for help fast. Plus, it can help you and your friends find each other easily in a new city.
For Exploring Your Locale
- City Maps 2Go - Like a wise and learned local, this travel app, City Maps 2Go, offers insider tips and suggestions of where to eat, visit, and sleep. This is especially helpful for finding regional foods and discovering the nearest public attractions. Bonus, the map feature works offline.
- PocketGuide - Pause. Soak in the displays of culture, nature, and history. Resume. Skip ahead. Audio guides let you tour the local sites and attractions at your own pace. And the PocketGuide app takes you through the unique and interesting spots of the city, narrated by the best local tour guides. Features we like: no roaming fees, and the app lets you capture your experiences in pictures, video, and personal commentary.
- Google Translate - Translate words and phrases between English and 100 other languages for free on Google Translate. Best uses include looking up direct translations of common words and phrases, double checking pronunciation, reading signs and directions, or even for avoiding embarrassing translation fails.
For Safe Travels
- Smart Wallet - Consider getting a smart wallet to keep track of the essentials. Walli connects to your phone and will notify you if you accidentally leave your wallet behind or if a card has gone missing. The description says it's for men, but we think women's credit cards and I.D.s are important, too. So don't feel discouraged from getting one.
- Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) - STEP is a free service that allows U.S. citizens traveling outside the country to enroll their trip in the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate. In the case of a natural disaster, family emergency, or uncertain safety conditions, the program will notify you and help you make informed decisions about your travel plans.
For Handling Funds and Documents
- TransferWise - No matter how good your budgeting skills, you can expect to go a little over funds once in awhile. In this case, ask the 'rents to send you money abroad with TransferWise. This app will allow them to transfer at a real exchange rate without paying hidden or costly fees charged by banks. Not sure where to start? Watch their video guide to making a transfer.
- Dropbox Mobile - Dropbox, a free file sharing service, is a cloud-based app that lets you store and share documents instantly. You can use it to store and access important documents you don't want to lose like passports, health insurance I.D. card, driver’s license, etc. Or, use it to send picture and video updates to select friends and family back home.