iPhone apps for Philippines
In these series of articles we discover popular country-specific iOS apps that may be most useful to both tourists and local residents. What are the iPhone apps for Philippines that maybe useful?
Often times you want taxi to be there but can’t find one. GrabTaxi comes in handy not only in Philippines. It’s also popular in a number of other countries in South east Asia.
If you’re in Manila or Cebu, using this app won’t provide any benefit during traffic hours. The only way to order taxi in these areas using the app is during non-traffic hours, 1pm to 5pm.
Another major downside of the app, is that it requires you to pay a booking fee. In Manila, in December 2015, it was 40 pesos that you have to pay on top of meter. But surprisingly, there is no booking fee in Cebu.
Grabtaxi supports cache payments. Paying with bank cards is currently under beta testing in some areas.
From worse to a better app. Uber service may be somewhat more expensive but comes with a better application and personally, I have never had a problem getting a taxi using the app during traffic hours, unlike with Grabtaxi.
There is no booking fee and the app has support for payment by bank cards since its very beginning. Opposite to Grabtaxi, cache payments are being tested.
The app is supported in Manila with great presence in Makati City. Uber in Cebu is being launched.
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You need a navigation app, have the maps always available offline and provide you with walking directions? There is an app for that. And it’s called Maps.me.
I personally tested the app on an Android device since my Android device wasn’t all that sluggish as iPhone 4s with iOS 9. I believe the iOS version of the app has the same feature set. The app is a perfect companion for traveling in Philippines and thus must be included in the list.
First thing you have to do once you downloaded the app is to fetch maps of Philippines. Use Wi-Fi for this. It’s a 100+ Mb download. Next, it’s very easy to find a place and plan your route to it. I didn’t have a problem with the routes suggested by the app so far. One thing to consider is not to walk outside at lunch time longer than for 10 minutes. It’s just too hot in Philippines if you stay outdoors at early afternoon 🙂
If you want to call back home – there is nothing cheaper than using SIP telephony. This app enables your phone to be a SIP client. Of course, you also need a SIP account registered with a company of your choice. You can find SIP accounts providers online. But best option is to research if your local mobile operator supports SIP and use that.
Pro tip: the app is quite expensive but provides for tremendous savings when calling back home. Make sure to purchase codec add-on. This will enable you to have calls with good voice quality, even on a lousy data connection that is commonly found in Philippines