So you’re headed to South East Asia (SEA). That’s cool. Before you leave your home WIFI, make sure you’ve downloaded and signed-up for these apps. You can thank us later.
You’ve got to get around and navigating taxis in a different language has led to some hilarious and horrific travel stories. GRAB is a ride hailing app (think Uber on steroids).
You can hail a taxi, hail a motorcycle taxi, arrange a delivery, order food, book a car with a driver, hail a private car…the list goes on. You can use addresses or drop pins to set pick-up and drop-off locations. Larger vehicles and scheduling rides in advance are all possibilities.
Depending on the country, you can choose to pay by cash or card. So download GRAB and taxi your way through Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam.
Bonus – if you’re traveling for business, GRAB will email you a receipt. Depending on the type of vehicle you book, the GRAB booking fee varies. For example, for a standard taxi in Thailand you’ll pay 20 Baht plus the meter but if you book a van, you’ll pay 150 Baht plus the meter.
Download the app and use code GRABWYKANDCO when booking your first ride. It won’t help you any, but you seem nice and it will get us 40% off our next GRAB ride – so thanks for that!
Making a dinner reservation in Thailand, Hong Kong the Phillipines, Malaysia, India, Indonesia, and Singapore got a lot easier when TripAdisor teamed-up with Eatigo. This app not only let’s you make reservations, but will give you discounts depending on what time you make a reservation for. Restaurants want to fill seats and Eatigo helps them incentivize us while keeping their house full. Discounts vary depending on time and restaurant. You can also pull up the map and see what’s around you right now. When you arrive, simply let the server know you have an Eatigo reservation and enjoy your meal. You should note some menu items are exempt from the deal – usually alcohol.
We’re coo coo for KLOOK and we’re not the only ones. KLOOK’s reach is becoming truly global with partners across Asia, Africa, Europe, Oceania, and the USA. Navigating their app or their website is easily done by city. So once you know where you’re going, we suggest you check KLOOK. Everything from dinning, to activities, to SIM cards, to airport transfers can be found in here. We use KLOOK even when heading out in our own city – because why pay more?! Book with KLOOK and then show your coupon (digital or printed) to the partner when you arrive. We’ve used it lots and never had a problem.
Be prepared to feel confused when someone says they found it online, because what they mean is on LINE. This messaging app is the choice for locals in most of South East Asia. LINE handles texting, picture sharing, calling, and video calling so make sure you have data (a local SIM card through KLOOK will help). If you haven’t experienced Asia love with stickers (the demigods of the emoji world), then strap yourself in because it is a wild ride of animated communication. LINE also makes use of QR Codes like they’re going out of style so scan away to learn more, contact companies, and make new friends.
It’s a sign of the times, but air quality is an issue in many Asian urban centres. The AirVisual app lets you pick a monitoring station near you to determine the nearby air quality. For those of us who live in SEA, this is a daily tool. Depending on your sensitivity to pollution, this may be a take it or leave it app. For those who need it, it’s a great tool to have handy.
PC Sara Kurfeß