7 Essential Apps Enhance Your Experience in China
The mobile age has made international travel more accessible than ever. This is especially true in China, where the right apps can make all the difference as you explore teeming cities. Not sure where to start? Download these essential apps:
1. WeChat (微信 Wēixìn)
Boasting over one billion monthly active users, WeChat is China’s go-to solution for keeping in touch. This popular messaging app helps you keep in contact with hosts, new friends, and fellow travelers.
Feeling homesick? Chat with loved ones via voice or video. Group video calls allow you to conduct business or keep in touch with several people at once. If you’re struggling with directions, harness the power of WeChat’s real-time location tool — an especially valuable option if you plan to meet up with friends or acquaintances in a crowded area.
2. Baidu Maps
Google Maps may be your top navigational tool at home, but in China, Baidu Maps reigns supreme. It’s particularly valuable as you attempt to navigate infrastructure that sprawls vertically as much as it does horizontally. The app’s 3D search function helps you locate businesses situated on upper levels. You’ll also gain valuable insight into public transit schedules and current traffic conditions.
Baidu Maps is a non-negotiable if you’re hoping to check out the Forbidden City or the Temple of Heaven. It provides a detailed overview of large tourist destinations, highlighting the specific locations of temples, restrooms, and more.
3. Metro China Subway
You might be intimately familiar with subway systems around the world, but China’s transit is a whole new challenge. The Metro China Subway app can guide you through this complicated network by providing essential information regarding routes, schedules, and fares.
From Beijing to Shanghai, this essential app will get you where you need to go, no matter the crowds. Outside of China, it can be used to navigate subway systems in Tokyo, London, and several other cities.
Every international tourist needs a quality mobile dictionary. In China, your best bet is the Pleco app, which instantly processes results from a variety of licensed dictionaries. Look up words with a helpful handwriting tool or tap on them within the document reader. Improve your Chinese vocabulary rapidly with help from the app’s customizable flashcard system.
An essential for travel in just about any country, TripAdvisor is particularly valuable in China, where it offers detailed insight into a variety of accommodations, activities, and dining establishments.
6. China Train Booking
Experience the legendary transit of China with none of the usual stress of navigating a foreign transportation system. The China Train Booking app allows you to check availability and book tickets instantly. Present e-vouchers to collect tickets effortlessly. In-app notifications keep you in the loop regarding booking status.
7. Waygo Translator
From signs to menus, the language divide can be a huge challenge when traveling in China. The Waygo Translator can help, particularly if you struggle to type or draw characters. Simply take a picture — the app will provide an instant translation. Say goodbye to translation nightmares, especially as you explore hidden gems.
Stress-free travel is well within reach when you harness the power of mobile. Experiment with China’s top travel apps to get a better sense of the country’s transit system and top attractions; you’ll be glad to have powerful mobile tools in your corner.