Our lives haven’t been the same since the arrival of the Smartphone, but are you really making the most of it in the UK?
Whether you live in the UK or you’re just visiting, today I’ll recommend you the best apps for your mobile phone that’ll make you life easier. Restaurants, tourism, transport, and much more. I’ll start with:
For pleasure seekers, the best recommendations for eating or going out in London, Birmingham, Bristol, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds or Manchester. Its map shows you the nearest pubs, concerts, news, reviews, and offers.
2. Visit London Official Guide
Official information about the city in the palm of your hand. It includes offline maps, personalized itineraries, information about museums, schedules, transport, and a list of attractions to visit.
I also recommend you look for other official tourism apps for the cities you’re going to visit so you’re always up to date about the best things happening in each one. Examples:
Who hasn’t heard about this app, which is revolutionizing transport? A few days ago I used it for the first time in London and I’m very happy with it. It’s an app that puts you in contract with private drivers who act as “taxi drivers” and charge half of what an official taxi would. It’s 100% safe as the drivers are registered and verified, it has GPS tracking, and you don’t have to pay directly as it’s done through the app with your registered credit card. Here was my experience: I took the same route from A to B with Uber and then from B to A with a London cab. The Uber car cost £9 and the cab cost £17. Not bad at all. 😉
Tip: If you don’t have the app yet, download it with our code, “albertc1353ue” or use this link to get a free trip worth £10. If you’re going to use Uber with another person, have them download it too and apply the code, and you’ll get a free return trip. :P
Since taxis are so expensive, especially in London, I downloaded this app in order to book a taxi at 4am on Sunday, to save money and assure myself I had a driver who would bring me to my destination at such an inconvenient time. Well, if you book with this app you can track your taxi when it gets nearer, send your driver messages directly, evaluate him/her, and know the price in advance. I recommend using the “fixed rate” mode, which consists of reserving a few minutes ahead of time: they give you a discount of 30% compared to the normal taxi meter and this way you know how much they’ll ask for before you request it.
For now, you can use it in London, Manchester, Liverpool, Birmingham, Edinburgh and Glasgow.
Tip: Get a discount of £10 with our promotional code: GTQWMRU. You just have to download the app and introduce the code into the “COUPON CODE” section and it’ll be applied to your first journey automatically. 🙂 As in Uber’s case, if you’re going to take a taxi with someone else, have that person download it too and apply the code, and you’ll get the return journey free too. :P
5. Bus Checker (London)
You’ll never have to wait in the cold rain for that bus you don’t know will arrive or has already left. Traffic is horrible in London, and the buses can be very late, but to avoid problems we have this app, which shows where each bus is and how long it’ll take to get to your stop. Very useful.
For Bristol, Bath, and the North Somerset zone, there’s also the TravelWest Bus Checker.
Find out what’s going on in your city at all times: the best concerts and musical events, big or small. It lets you buy the entries from your mobile instantly. If you don’t have any plans, this app will save you from boredom.
It gives information about London, Bristol, Cardiff, Glasgow, and Manchester.
Its name says everything. Recommendations about little-known or unseen attractions and sites in the English capital. Download it and impress your friends. An entire world to discover.
In Bristol we have another similar app: Hidden Bristol
8. ATM Hunter
It won’t be the app you use the most, but it’s free and it can get you out of more than one tight spot if you need to find an ATM in the United Kingdom.
I like the “good life”, discovering new things, and spending time with my friends… So keeping this in mind, what is there to do? Eat… and try new things every day! JustEat makes the task of looking for a restaurant easier, as you can make your request online or through the app, and choose between going to pick up your order and home delivery. They have a lot of special offers and user reviews, and you can check your past orders.
Going out to lunch or dinner can be expensive nowadays, but with this app you’ll find out which restaurants you can reserve that are near you and even have discounts. Between this and TimeOut, you’ll never have to repeat a restaurant due to a lack of information.
Although mobiles do everything and are cheap, there’s still something that can cost you money… extra Internet or data. If you’re one of those people who always has barely enough megabytes to use WhatsApp by the end of the month, you need Onavo. How does it work? It’s simple: you download it and let it manage your navigation. Then Onavo filters Internet connections, compressing images, videos, and everything you download in order to save megabytes and adapt the content of those website for your mobile. You can save up to 80% of the downloaded data.
Flight delay or cancellation? You don’t know if you can claim money back? AirHelp lets you know if the airline should give you compensation and if you have the right to a bigger reimbursement. Don’t wait until you get home pissed off and in a bad mood – claim what’s yours from the plane!
It doesn’t matter if you go on foot, by bike, or on the metro… there are times when you need a guide that indicates the fastest and cheapest route to you. CityMapper has everything you need, and in real time. Insert your point of origin and destination; then the app gives you all possible ways to arrive. I love it.
Available for London, Birmingham and Manchester.
14. Tube Map
We’re all set with the last app mentioned, but if you’re one of those people who likes seeing the metro map and checking the colours of the lines so you don’t feel lost when you’re on the London metro… download it.
You go into a shop and see something you like or were looking for, and you ask yourself “Can I get it cheaper or should I buy it now?” This question can be answered immediately with Redlaser, which allows you to photograph the product’s barcode and shows you all the websites where you can buy it and its prices right then. They’ll never be able to charge you more for an impulse buy anymore. :)
Train tickets in the United Kingdom can be unbelievably expensive. But if you’re in a hurry and you have to buy a train ticket on the same day you’re travelling, you can split a journey into various tickets to save a few pounds (as I’ve already recommended doing in our guide to saving money on train tickets in the UK) with this application.
17. English Heritage
Each day, England fascinates me more, and one of my favourite ways to spend my days off is visiting nearby towns, castles, and other attractions in order to discover the culture and history of the country. If you also want to get out of the city and enjoy this country’s historical heritage, this is what you’re looking for.
It’s Saturday or Sunday and your team is playing in a match that you don’t want to miss… Where can I see it? you wonder. It doesn’t matter what sport it is, with MatchPint you’ll find the nearest pub where the football, rugby, or even cricket match is being shown… they might even give you free beer if you reserve a table with the app.
It’s saved me more than once. I really like the app, as it says whether there are big screens or other services. Available across the UK.
Can you recommend us another interesting app?