Travel

Use iPad to prepare for travel to India

Indian Panchang (Calendar)

Travelling to India for the first time can be very overwhelming. From packing the right clothes for India, to getting the right vaccinations for travel to India, knowing Indian roads, Indian festivals, Indian Railways, it can be quite a daunting task not just for western travellers, but also for overseas Indians visiting India after many years.

With a range of simple iPad Apps, planning your India trip has just got easier. Let The Global Indian magazine show you some of the best iPad Applications for travel to India, many of which are free.

Mobile Maps India GPS Navigation App

Any traveler to India will tell you how lost you can feel in this vast landscape that India is, where culture, language and climate changes every few kilometres. You will be lost without a comprehensive map of India, and could be easily taken for a ride by your taxi driver, or rickshaw driver.

While there are many other map applications which are either cheaper or free, this iPad App is worth its price. Now, the most important and useful iPad App in this list is also the most expensive, but before we get to the price, let us show you the features.

Mobile Maps by Sygic and MapmyIndia is a very comprehensive turn-by-turn, voice guided navigation software for your iPad and iPhone. The iPad app provides all maps with street level navigation in 400 cities across India, with free map updates.

You can control the music and radio while navigating, and use its pinch-to-zoom feature to scroll naturally through menus. You can search for thousands of restaurants and other points of interest, with an option to call in, find parking, and navigate to. For its usefulness, $49.99 is a small price to pay.

Indian Trains

Indian Railways is the largest employer in the world, and has one of the most expensive railway networks going the breadth and depth of this vast subcontinent. If you are going places in India, you will inevitably travel by Indian Railways which offers a unique way to experience India’s diversity. This $1.99 iPad App lets you check running train status, seat availability check and PNR status for any train in India. (PNR is a ticket number issued by Indian Railways.) The iPad App integrates with the Indian Railways website, and lets you check running train status, seat availability for next 90 days, bookmark train Number, station and PNR numbers and search trains between stations. Download the iPad App.

India Panchang Calendar 2011 App

India is a melting pot of many regions, and the Indian calendar is full of more than 340 festivals and holidays. You will need to familiarise yourself with Indian festivals while planning your trip to India, so that you can either plan near a festival or away from it so as to avoid major rush.

The Panchang (Hindi for calendar) shows India’s culture through the Hindu, Muslim, Sikh, Christian and civil festivals happening all along the year. Nearly all the festivals are illustrated with a colorful image. Download the iPad App for $0.99.

Hurry with the curry

If you are dining at an Indian restaurant and have no clue what to order, this iPad App will surely be your saviour. You don’t need to play it safe and order ‘butter chicken with naan’ every time you order at an Indian restaurant. Simply download this iPad App for $2.99 and let it help you negotiate most South Asian restaurant menus.

It will even give you an idea of the spices and ingredients that make up many popular Indian dishes. Just look up the alphabetical index, and you’ll be on your way to becoming an Indian food expert in no time at all! The App is written by Shaheen Bilgrami who was born in India and has lived in the US and the UK. She has been a foodie from an early age and enjoys cooking and eating good food from all over the world! Download the iPad App.

Lingolook INDIA App

India has 22 languages recognised by its constitution and has more than 500 dialects. While English is the widely spoken and understood in the main cities of the country, it is very helpful to know some local words for essential communication. This iPad App promises to teach you to “speak Hindi like a local with a tap of your Multi-Touch display, and master pronunciation of essential travel keywords and phrases from over 300 “talking translations”.

If this sounds like too much of a task, you can simply flash your iPad or iPhone with the large type translations showcased on 75 cleverly designed flashcards. The best part of this iPad App is that it does not require internet connection, because the data is stored on the device. You can learn 500 most essential words and phrases and 300 high quality audio translations. It also contains reference menu readers, country tips, travel facts, size chart, calendar and numeral! Downoad the iPad App for $3.99.
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