Travelling is a fantastic way of not only broadening your mind, but also of seeing the world in all of its glory, forcing yourself out of your comfort zone, and seeing how other people, and other creatures, live in different parts of the globe. Our planet is beautiful in every sense of the word, and it has to be agreed upon, that the continent of Africa, without question, is a big part of why that is. If you’re thinking of travelling and seeing the world, Africa is a great place to begin, and in fact, as it is as expansive as it is beautiful, Africa is actually a great place to finish as well. As far as travel is concerned, it doesn’t matter whether you plan on going on Safari, relaxing on a beach, exploring the sandy deserts of the Sahara, or simply soaking up some rays around the pool in Egypt, you will need to be prepared and you will need a little help and advice along the way. Thanks to modern technology, help is a few clicks away, in the form of handy apps for your smartphone and/or tablet. Here’s a look at six essential apps for Africa

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Courtesy of Kindle/Google Play

Essential Apps for Africa: Kindle

The Kindle app is a fantastic app to have installed on your smart device, for a variety of reasons. When on holiday or vacation, there is nothing better than relaxing by the pool and reading a good book. The problem with books, however, is that they are heavy and they do take up space, so you can only take so many with you at once. With Kindle, however, you can download and install countless books onto your smart device, without having to lug books around with you everywhere you go. With Kindle, you can enjoy your favourite novels, plus you can use the app for some useful research for your trip itself. Many handy African guidebooks can easily be downloaded via kindle, so not only will you be entertained, you will also be educated along the way. 

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Courtesy of Tripit/Google Play

Essential Apps for Africa: Tripit

Next up we’ll be taking a look at the Tripit app. This fantastic travel app for Africa is perfect for those of you who like to be organized and who like to know where you are and what you’re doing. It can function as an effective travel planner and itinerary, helping you to get as organized as possible. The app allows you to send relevant and important information to the app, so, things like accommodation booking details, flight details, and car rental details, can all be sent to the app where details will then be collated and exported to your calendar, so you know exactly what you’re doing, and when. What’s more, the app even allows users to keep track of their frequent flyer accounts. With Tripit, you’ll never miss a Safari or excursion again. 

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Essential Apps for Africa: WI-FI Finder

Whether you like it or not, as a race, we are now incredibly reliant on the internet, which means that thanks to the fact that more than 1 in 2 of us now owns a smart device, now more than ever, the need for a WiFi signal is abundantly clear. This app can find WiFi in over 140 countries, including plenty in Africa, so wherever you are, WiFi will never be far away. You obviously can search offline, and if you’re planning on visiting destinations such as Marrakech, Cairo, or Cape Town, there will be plenty of places to search. What’s more, you can filter results based upon paid, or free WiFi, which also helps you to locate cafes and other similar establishments. Having WiFi whilst travelling is a huge bonus, and thanks to Wi-Fi finder, that is exactly what you will have. 

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Essential Apps for Africa: XE Currency Converter

XE Currency Converter is available on IOS and Android devices, and it is completely free to use. If you plan on travelling to Africa, obviously you will need to ensure you have the correct currency, especially as many places don’t accept debit or credit card payments. This means that you will have to deal primarily in cash, and what’s more, due to the fact that Africa is home to more than 40 countries, depending on where you visit, you may need multiple currencies. There are exchange rates that are constantly updated every single minute, so you can be sure that you will find yourself the best possible deals. 

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Travel App for Africa: StarWalk

If you’re visiting Africa, there is a strong chance you will find yourself heading out on Safari, and one thing you will notice when the sun goes down is how beautiful the night sky really is. There is virtually no light pollution in Africa, and as the nights are largely clear, as soon as it gets dark, you will be met with a blanket of twinkling stars above your head, that is better than any laser light show. If you’re a stargazer, or if you simply want to learn a bit more about the galaxies twinkling above your head, StarWalk is absolutely perfect. This travel app for Africa works by basically having the user aim their device into the sky, where it will then show them on screen, exactly where, and what, they are looking at. 

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Courtesy of Sasol Ebirds/Google Play

Essential Apps for Africa: Sasol Southern Africa Bird Guide

This app is highly educational and very interesting, even for people who are not in Africa solely on safari. Africa is home to some amazing birds, big and small, and, no matter where you are, you will almost certainly encounter many of them during your stay in Africa. Whether you’re on safari in Kenya, or simply enjoying a cocktail in the sun Nairobi, when you do come across these creatures, being able to identify them and know what you’re looking at is a real bonus. This app allows you to do just that, and although the focus is perhaps on Southern Africa, in reality, virtually all areas are covered, so if bird spotting is your thing, make sure you get this app downloaded pronto. 

Courtesy of Kindle/Google Play