A handful of smartphone apps can give you the convenience you need when living in Cebu.
Your phone might be the most important of all your travel essentials. It’s your organizer, calendar, gaming device, and means of communication. Software companies have innovated the smartphone space with applications that make mundane tasks easier and more fun.
Not all apps are available everywhere, though, especially in the Philippines. In the Queen City of the South, there are several apps that can be found on almost every single person’s phone. These are applications you should download when living in Cebu.
All of these are free to download from the Google Play Store or Apple Store.
Here are some apps you should have when living in Cebu:
FOR NAVIGATION: Waze
Arguably the best app for driving directions worldwide, Waze provides accurate directions, a neat user interface, and most importantly, a digital voice assistant that will assist you toward your desired destination.
Other users can also relay information like the traffic situation in the different roads and highways.
Plus, there are several voice options for you to choose from. This can make driving to your destination more fun.
This is a must download app for anyone who is planning to explore the different tourist spots in Cebu.
HONORABLE MENTION: Google Maps
Google Maps is more popular since most phones have it pre-installed. Like with Waze, this gives you directions to your desired destination, albeit with a little bit of inconsistency.
Regardless, this may be more beneficial to commuters, since it gives you jeepney route options going to and from a specific location.
While Waze focuses on vehicles, Google Maps gives you directions and an ETA (estimated time of arrival) via on foot or public transportation.
ONLINE SHOPPING: Shopee / Lazada
There are two apps that most people will have on their smartphones for purchasing items online, namely Shopee and Lazada.
You can buy electronics, clothes, appliances, and accessories.
Both applications focus on delivering products to countries like the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and more. They also have monthly promos that offer discounts and free shipping.
However, some popular high end brands outside of Asia can be hard to find, and you’re likely to find some knockoffs on these two platforms. Just make sure to read reviews on the product and seller before making a purchase.
HONORABLE MENTION: Amazon Shopping
Amazon is the number one online shopping website in the world, and an app is available for people to use.
However, using it in the Philippines can be a bit of a hassle since the company’s main office is located outside of Asia. This means shipping fees can be very high, and items can take months to arrive.
If you’re willing to wait for your orders and pay extra for shipping, then you can enjoy browsing through a variety of authentic products on the platform.
If not, the first two shopping apps are sufficient for essential purchases.
RIDE SHARING: Grab
Since Uber made its exit from Southeast Asia in 2018, Grab has become the number one ride-sharing app in the Philippines and its neighboring countries.
Once you’ve selected a destination, the app will contact nearby drivers to pick you up and drop you off. You can book a four seater, a six seater, or a grab taxi (where you will be riding with other Grab users or customers).
This has become more than a ride-sharing app, though. They have GrabMart, which is a personal grocery delivery service. They also offer delivery services for food and parcels.
HONORABLE MENTION: Angkas
If you’re looking to get to your destination in a hurry, then you can download Angkas.
Unlike Grab, Angkas is a ride-sharing app for motorcycle taxis. Not only will this be faster, but cheaper as well.
Drivers are trained and monitored before being allowed to roam the road, and they will always provide their passengers with a helmet.
This may be more beneficial for those who want to travel towards mountainous barangays like Busay, but know that it’s also going to cost more.
There are other applications you can use for cashless payments, food deliveries, and booking services that can make living in Cebu more worthwhile and convenient. The aforementioned apps are a must have on every smartphone, whether you’re a tourist or local. You’ll find that they are especially helpful when you’re in a new city or country.