How many times have you heard “there’s an app for that”? I mean seriously now-a-days there is an app for almost anything! As a commuter some of the most important apps I have on my phone are the ones I use for travel – whether it’s day to day or vacation travel. Here are the categories my apps fall under, then I will break it down for you; Ride Sharing, Parking, Maps, Trains.
It’s 2017 and ride sharing is everywhere. Most commonly used being Uber and Lyft, but sorry Uber Lyft usually gets my business. I really like the feature of being able to refer friends and getting credit for it. When my friends and I go out, we just continue referring each other and getting Lyft credits so we barely ever had to split the fee. Cheating the system? Maybe, but it works!
I’ve found that most MBTA parking lots will only let you pay via the app now, so it doesn’t matter if you have a cup holder full of change in your car or not. My local lot uses PayByPhone which is a very user friendly app. You can pay for parking from one day at a time to the whole month at once – you know I love the convenience factor! Another useful parking app with very similar features is ParkBoston for all you city folk out there.
MY favorite map app is Google Maps! Very user friendly and I find that it is more accurate that the provided navigation app on an iPhone. Optimizes your route, lets you easily explore what’s right near you, and is quick with rerouting if you’ve made an error (yes, I have tested this). Waze comes in a close second simply because I love it for different features. Waze’s traffic alert/tracking system is unbeatable. Again, #winning in the convenience category.
When I first starting commuting I couldn’t get through the day without Citymapper and mTicket. Citymapper is a great tool because you can punch in any kind of destination and it will give you exact train routes to your destination. My favorite feature though is when it tells you which car to ride to optimize your travel time – this tip became a life saver on days I found myself sprinting through South Station. mTicket is a literally the digital version of a commuter rail pass. You can buy daily, weekly, or monthly passes. I used this a ton until I started getting a Charlie Card through work.
Convenience, functionality, and user friendly features! I’m sure there is a million and one travel apps out there, but these ones get a five-star rating in my book. Check them out and let me know what you think!