No one needs a smartphone full of gimmicky apps or too many website tabs open, so we have rounded up a selection of the best tools for the digital-savvy traveler in Peru.
GREENSEAT – You make it happen
“Responsible travel minimizes negative ecological impacts.” But how can you make up for your negative ecological footprint if you want to travel to the other side of the planet?
Biking, taking a hydrogen bus or a green energy train are a few options. But unfortunately these CO2 neutral alternatives can’t be found everywhere, including Peru. That’s why GreenSeat was created! It is a website where you can calculate your CO2 emission when you are traveling by train, car, bus or plane. The idea is that you can compensate your trip by supporting their different green energy projects.
Of course it is not the perfect solution for more environmentally friendly travel but it’s a good alternative to travel in a climate smart way. And let´s admit it, turning our seat green also has a positive impact on our conscience.
• Free, greenseat.nl
DUOLINGO – Playful language classes
Sustainable tourism is also about valuable experiences and meaningful connections with locals. But communicating isn’t always easy if you don’t speak the language. That’s why Duolingo is a fun way to learn a new language so you can have more personal interactions with locals! ¡Oye amigo! ¿Que hay de nuevo?
With the Duolingo app, it seems more as if you are playing a game instead of taking language classes, because it uses different methods of learning which will always make you feel engaged!
• Free, iOS and Android, duolingo.com
GOOGLE TRANSLATE – Know what to say
This translator can be a useful tool to support your own, more serious language learning, but realistically, it is most useful on a practical level quickly translating day-to-day words you come across on your travels. For example, you can hold your camera up to text – such as a sign, or a menu – and Google will translate it for you instantly. It is the essential app for any traveler.
• Free, iOS and Android, translate.google.com
JET LAG ROOSTER – For the International Traveler
If you are crossing time zones, Jet Lag Rooster will design a personalized sleep schedule to help you avoid jet lag on your trip. Enter your travel details before your flight, and Jet Lag Rooster will do the rest!
• Free, jetlagrooster.com
UBER – Get there quicker
Though Uber has faced some controversy, it is still a great and safe way to get around a city you don’t know. After setting up a profile and payment information (you can choose to pay cash in the local currency or charge your credit card), you are ready to use the app. Now you just need to confirm your pickup location and choose your destination. The app will show you where there are active cars around you so you can get an idea of how long it will take to get picked up.
In Peru, Uber is currently only available in Lima and offers a great way to easily navigate around the capital city.
• Free, iOS and Android, uber.com
XE CURRENCY – Know what you pay
XE is the go-to site for currency conversions on the web, so it’s no surprise that its app is so popular: with over 20 million downloads since its launch. It has lots of business-oriented features, such as rates for precious metals and historic currency charts, but for the traveler it is most useful for the simple fact that it’s able to convert every world currency. It also functions offline by saving the last updated rates, which is great if you are travelling with limited connectivity or trying to save on data.
• Free, iOS and Android, xe.com
FOODSPOTTING – Find your dish
Foodspotting is useful at home and away. Find the right place to get the food you are craving by plugging in your location and desired dish. Foodspotting then provides you a digest of nearby eateries and reviews that suit your food mood. It has never been so easy to find Ceviche, Aji de Gallina and more of Peru´s delicious signature dishes!
• Free, foodspotting.com
LIVETREKKER – Track your adventure
This ambitious app creates a digital journal of your travels so you can look back on your trips on an interactive map. The app tracks you as you go, marking a red line along a map on the exact route you take; the app also monitors your speed and altitude, making it great for adventure travelers going on a trek in Peru, though it is just as fun to look back at your route around a city like Lima. You can add pictures, video, audio and text along the way, creating a multimedia travel diary you can share with friends and family.
• Free, iOS and Android, livetrekker.com
BOOMERANG – Social Media Fun
Instagram may have been one of the hottest apps in 2014, but now we have Boomerang to spice things up and add a bit more fun to social media. Boomerang makes everyday moments fun and unexpected. Create captivating mini videos that loop back and forth, then share them with your friends and family back home. Use it to add even more excitement to a selfie overlooking Machu Picchu or any photo with a Llama really.
• Free, iOS and Android
SNAPSEED – Better travel photos
With smartphone cameras now sporting 4K high definition capabilities, you are going to need a great software to fine-tune your travel photographs. Snapseed is the perfect travelling photographer’s companion and super easy to use: open your image and choose from a selection of presets (the HDR effect is one of our favorites), or fine-tune your photo using the detailed options. You can alter the ambiance, structure, saturation, contrast and more to make your photo Instagram and Facebook-ready.
• Free, iOS and Android