Going to another country on business or just taking a break? Either way, your smartphone can make your trip much more comfortable, if you prepare in advance correctly. About what exactly should be done on your phone before departure and will be discussed in this article!

So, let’s get your smartphones and walk carefully through each item on our list:

1. Disconnect mobile data on your SIM-card

The biggest foolishness you can do is to use mobile Internet abroad through roaming your home operator. Don’t worry, we’ll tell you more about how to replace your Internet. So, turn off your mobile data immediately (not on arrival). For this purpose:

  • Open your Smartphone Settings
  • Find the Mobile Network menu
  • Make sure that Roaming is off.

If it was not possible to find this item, then use the search function by settings.

Enter the word roaming in the search bar and the smartphone will show the desired result immediately.

In the Mobile Network menu, also turn off Mobile Internet (or simply lower the notification curtain and turn off the mobile Internet right from here).

Now the Internet will only work over Wi-Fi, not wasting mobile data abroad.

2. Take care of charging your smartphone.

A discharged phone will be of no use, so think in advance about how and where you will charge your smartphone. As a safety net, it is better to buy an inexpensive powerbank (external battery), which will be able to charge the device “on the go”.

Find out beforehand which sockets are used in the country you are going to. If necessary, take the adapter with you (plugs in Europe, USA and Australia are different).

3. What to do first when you arrive in another country

While most of our advice will help you use your smartphone effectively without having access to the internet, you may still need it in some situations.

So, buy a SIM card from your local operator as soon as you arrive. They are sold in almost every store. The package will definitely include a tariff plan and an available number of gigabytes.

Please note: in the vast majority of cases you will need to activate your SIM card. The best way to do this is to go directly to the store (by asking the retailer), the procedure itself will take just a few minutes.

4. Country Navigation

The best way to find new places and navigate abroad is to use the standard Google Maps application. But don’t forget to download the maps of the cities you are interested in beforehand, so you can work with them without an internet connection. Moreover, most popular cities have travel guides and apps for travelers, like Monaco for example. To download maps, you need:

  • Open the Maps application
  • From the side menu, select Offline cards.
  • Click the Select Card button
  • Find the desired city on the map and select the size of the area.
  • Click the Download button

Now search and navigation in this area will work even without network access! You can upload an unlimited number of cities. Moreover, the saved maps will be automatically updated as soon as you are within Wi-Fi coverage area.

5. Overcoming the language barrier

Even if you know the language of the country you are going to go to, a reliable pocket-sized translator will never be superfluous. The free Google Translator app (download for Android or iPhone) is the best choice for these tasks. Besides translation of words and sentences, the following interesting functions are supported here:

Communication mode. Press the button and speak your own language, let go – your smartphone pronounces the same phrase, but already in the native language. Press the button again and the smartphone listens to the interlocutor, then translates his speech back.

Camera mode. Just point the camera at the restaurant menu (or some sign) and all the inscriptions in a foreign language will be automatically converted into your native text.

Drawing mode. Useful function, for example, when going to China. Simply draw a character with your finger on the screen and the application will recognize it immediately by showing the translation.

Once you have downloaded the application, you need to prepare it to work without Internet access. To do this:

  • Launch Google Translator
  • Open the side menu and select Offline Translate.
  • To the right of the language we need, click on the download icon.
  • In the window that appears, confirm your choice by clicking the Download button.

Now you can use the translator even in offline mode. However, in this case, not all functions will be available, but only text translation.

6. How do I call a taxi?

To avoid embarrassing (and sometimes unpleasant) situations, it is better to install the application for calling a taxi on your smartphone in advance. Firstly, it will be cheaper, and secondly – more trivial (especially if you do not know the language well).

The most popular service around the world is Uber. But it should be noted that a number of countries have their own, more common and profitable services. So, find out beforehand which service is better to use in the country where you go.

We will briefly list the main (again, Uber can be used in most countries):

USA – Lyft

England, Ireland, Spain – Hailo

Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines, Vietnam, Thailand – Grabtaxi

South America – Easy Taxi

Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan – Yandex. Taxi.

Ukraine – Uklon

China – Didi Taxi

It is simply impossible to tell you in detail how to work with each of these applications in a single article, so do the following:

Select the service you are interested in and download the application to your smartphone.

Sign up

Add your payment card

Learn how it works.

Please note: if you add a card, you may need to confirm it by SMS, so it is best to do it before you go on your trip.

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