Europe’s centrepiece city is certainly full of ancient history – but that doesn’t mean you can’t make the most of modern gadgets and tech. Your phone is your everything these days; boarding ticket, train ticket, debit card, computer, GPS, you name it. And there are more than a few features that are sure to come in handy in and about Rome.
Here’s a rundown by category of apps and functions alike to make sure you’re ready when the time comes – for daily life or for a simple weekend break!
Italiano! Translation and Learning Tools
The capital city of Italy isn’t without its challenges. While many natives will be used to tourists and will likely make accommodations, you’re at a massive advantage if you can speak even just a few sentences of Italian.
Phone hack one: Duolingo. With courses on everything from basic vocab and grammar to complex sentence structures, this is one of the best downloadable apps out there for beginners looking to build the foundations of a new language.
Phone hack two: Google Translate. When all else is lost, a quick sentence or two translated directly from your native language into Italian can work wonders. What’s more, Google Translate now has a live camera function that translates everything in-picture, which is great for restaurant menus, maps and more.
Phone Apps and Hacks for Daily Rome Life
Basics out of the way, here are a few more obscure tips, like the Fountains in Italy app. A complete network of the country’s fresh water drinking fountains, it has a map of practically every source throughout the city and beyond. This is the same water that comes out of Italian taps – clean, pure and refreshing.
Now for a website. Whether you’re on the go or at a café with Wi-Fi, there’s plenty of helpful information online, like this list of Rome fair taxi prices. Unfortunately for visitors to the city, Rome has a reputation for overcharging tourists for even short trips from A to B. Find taxi numbers online first, then be confident when it comes time to pay.
Apps for Peace of Mind
For all its extra gizmos and gadgets, you might just forget that your phone is… exactly that, a phone. Be sure to save all relevant emergency contact numbers into its system before your stay in the big city, such as 112 for all services, including medical aid.
Being on holiday doesn’t mean you need to be entirely disconnected from your life back home. You may need to check in with work or want to catch up with your family. Even seeking spiritual guidance shouldn’t be neglected if you need it, with tarot readings available anywhere, anytime. Whatever you require, it’s still just a phone call away no matter where you are in the world – Rome included. Although, you should still check with your provider to ensure you have service when abroad.
One final handy feature of most modern smartphones that’s crept seamlessly into modern life is that of contactless payment. It’s a growing trend – simply touch your card, or better yet your synced-up mobile phone to a machine and pay without hassle. It’s worth having this available for convenience’s sake. While some shops and restaurants will be cash-based, it never hurts to be up to date.
Your stay in Rome is bound to be an adventure no matter what, but it’ll be a far smoother one if you come smartphone equipped. Just don’t forget your charger and a plug adapter!