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September 2, 2015

5 ways your Lumia can help you on your vacation

With summer in the northern hemisphere all but over, there’s still time to grab a last-minute vacation. Don’t forget to pack your Lumia!

While the sun may be starting to dip a little lower than you’d like, the temperature probably is, too. To warm up, you may need to travel overseas. With these helpful apps loaded on your Lumia, you’ll be prepared for a journey to any vacation destination.



Cortana, your personal digital assistant, is a useful feature that comes with Windows Phone 8.1 in select regions.

Cortana can keep an eye on your flights, either by automatically finding your itinerary emails or manually adding them, and let you know if they’re on time or not.

Ask Cortana to “Track VS 19” or “When is my flight?” for updates. Otherwise, Cortana can show you those details, traffic times, the weather at your destination, and venue maps when you tap Cortana’s Live tile.

You can also ask Cortana to convert currency for you, which is useful when you’re hit with a bill while away. Try “What’s 16 Pounds Sterling in US Dollars?” and you’ll be met with the correct conversion. ($24.57 USD, by the way, as of this writing.)

Translator – free

Wherever you go, don’t let the language barrier spoil your experience.

Simply gawping at the confusing and exotically written menu won’t help you to understand it. Nor will speaking really loudly in your own language help the local cab driver understand you better.


Using Translator, you can point your camera at the menu, drinks machine, store sign, or anything with words on it, and the text will automatically be translated into your own language on-screen.

Additionally, you can use the voice feature to speak a sentence into your Lumia and then have your phone clearly speak it in another language. There’s also a keyboard option for typing in words and having them translated, too.

One great feature here is the offline language packs.

If you’re going abroad you may not want to use your data plan. Instead, load up on the local language before you go so you don’t dip into your (usually costly) roaming data plan.

HERE Maps – free


Don’t get lost roaming the streets of another city; use your Lumia to guide you.

HERE Maps features offline maps, which you can load onto your device prior to travel. Again, this means you’re not using your data plan.

Before you travel, plan ahead and favorite all the essential places: the airport, the hotel, two or three five-star restaurants, and a nice secluded beach. Then, pin them all to your Start screen and add them to a Live Folder (here’s a how-to) for easy and instant guidance when you need it most.

World Clock – free


“Are we five hours ahead, or behind? What time is it at home?” – We’ve all been there.

Don’t miscalculate and wake somebody up in the dead of night, let World Clock tell you precisely what time it is anywhere in the world.

Uber – free


If you’re heading to a big city such as London, New Delhi, or San Francisco, for example, chances are that it has a fleet of Uber cars ready for your command.

Using the GPS in your Lumia, Uber can pick you up from your exact location and take you to the destination you’ve selected in the app.

Moreover, there’s no need to hand over any cash as payment is electronically handled via your online Uber account.

What apps are accompanying you on your vacation? Let us know, below.