Getting Around With the Uber App

Uber is upending the cab and car services industries around the world, although not every one is welcoming them with open arms.  Paris taxi drivers recently went on strike to protest Uber’s competitive practices and rates.  They had good reason to protest, since Uber drivers are typically at least as reliable as taxicabs, at lower…

Cheap International Calling From Your Smartphone

The Ringo app is free, and works for both Android and iPhone.  While you must have a local SIM card if you’re traveling abroad, which means you need a GSM-capable phone that is unlocked (read more here), Ringo lets you make very cheap, high quality  international calls using a local network.  You don’t need to be…

Don’t Neglect QR Codes

If Quick Response (QR) codes have escaped your notice, you’re not alone.  They’re the odd patterns within square boxes like the one above that are the equivalent of a scannable bar code, and while they’re being used more frequently all the time, most people don’t recognize them or their usefulness.  They contain digitized information, usually…

More Google Brilliance: Translate

If you have a knack for language, and you only travel to places and countries that speak languages in which you are fluent, the Google Tranlate app for iPhone and Android smart phones won’t be of much use to you.  Other wise, it’s worth it’s 0.6 MB file size in gold. I found it while…

Vital Tech Travel Tool: An Unlocked Smartphone

Smart phones really are the Swiss Army knives of tech.  And as long as you’re either connected to wifi or your carrier’s data and voice network, they’re worth their weight in gold when it comes to keeping  you connected, informed, and out of trouble. But when you’re roaming, especially internationally, your smart phone either becomes…

Word Lens: An Indispensable Translation Tool

You may not have read the writing on the wall, but with Google’s Word Lens app for smartphones and tablets, you’ll be able to read writing just about anywhere even if it’s written in French, German, Portuguese, Italian, or Russian.  If you think this sounds unbelievable, it is, but it works, and it works amazingly well.…

Driving in Europe? Choose a Rental Car with Integrated GPS

  Most frequent travelers have invested in portable GPS devices, smartphones, and tablets.  All of these offer great voice-prompted navigation which is especially useful when you’re traveling in a foreign country, particularly if you’re not fluent in  the local language.  But as these portable technologies have developed, so have the integrated systems that most automobile…

The Right Tools

“One’s destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things.” ― Henry Miller Seasoned travelers agree that travel enriches us in ways that can be hard to measure or define.  Travel certainly deepens our understanding of the world,  and often deepens our understanding of ourselves and our fellow travelers.  Business travelers understand the enormous…