Whether you’re part of the next-gen of tech-savvy travellers or are still dependent on a good ol’ paper map to find your way, one thing is for certain — smartphone app is a Godsend!
These days, there’s literally an app available for almost anything you could imagine. From e-wallets to navigation guides to language aids, the modern traveller is truly blessed with an abundance of travel tools at their disposal. And the best thing is, these wondrous apps are readily available at your fingertips — or a smartphone to be precise.
That being said, certain apps may be more useful than others depending on where you visit. In our case, Malaysia, and more particularly, Kuala Lumpur (KL) is one destination that may beget some assistance from our friendly little mobile software.
Here are five useful apps that will make your travel experience hassle-free and enjoyable in KL.
Started out as a humble ride-hailing app, the Grab app has since evolved into a full-fledged lifestyle app. Thus, it’s no surprise that this app should be at the top of every traveller’s download list when they visit KL.
In need of a ride? GrabCar has got your back.
As the de facto e-hailing platform in the region, Grab’s fleet of private cars will be at your beck and call — no matter the time of day. And with its range of vehicle options (from economic to large 6-13 seaters to even luxury cars) you won’t have to break the bank to traverse the always traffic-congested streets of the city. Plus, Grab even offers discount codes from time to time for even more savings!
Getting hangry and tired? GrabFood will appease your hunger pangs.
Specifically, the built-in food delivery platform in the Grab app means travellers will get to devour tasty meals with a snap of a finger. The in-app feature allows existing Grab users (yes, even travellers) to order food from its partner restaurants. GrabFood is best suited for travellers who are exhausted and lethargic from walking around. With this feature, you won’t even have to get out of your hotel room for a scrumptious meal. Talk about convenience!
Low on cash? GrabPay allows you to settle your bills effortlessly!
To round off the all-encompassing app, Grab also functions as a mobile wallet known as GrabPay. With GrabPay, going cashless is a breeze. All you need is a credit/debit card to top up your Grab Wallet and voila! An easy (and safe) way to bring cash with you while you travel without being bogged down by actual paper money.
GrabPay may be used at participating outlets including restaurants, dining spots, and for in-store purchases. And the wallet also works on the aforementioned GrabCar and GrabFood services. The perks of GrabPay is earning the GrabRewards Points which can later be used to redeem a multitude of rewards like discounts, deals, and gifts!
2Malaysia Kuala Lumpur Subway/Kuala Lumpur Metro
If you’re planning a trip to KL, chances are, you’ll be getting around via the city’s integrated railway system. And that’s a wise choice indeed as KL — with all its intertwining roads — can be frustrating to negotiate due to its constant gridlock.
In KL, the Mass Rapid Transit (MRT), Light Rail Transit (LRT), Bus Rapid Transit (BRT), monorail, and commuter rail would be your best bet in getting around.
This integrated railway system makes travelling around the Klang Valley i.e. KL easy as you’ll only have to purchase one boarding token per trip. With convenience being the operative word, the train system also connects travellers to most major attractions found in and around the city.
That said, navigating the web of train lines and underground subway systems can be a daunting and head-scratching affair. That’s where the Malaysia Kuala Lumpur Subway app and Kuala Lumpur Metro app come in. These two apps (by different developers) will serve to aid you in your subway journey.
More particularly, users may use either one of the apps to look at railway routes, estimated duration of travel, and also the fares from one station to another.
Google Maps aside, this app is perfect for foreign travellers who may not have Internet or roaming access when they travel.
Maps.me is a navigation app that allows users to download an offline map which circumvents the no Internet problem. And the best thing about the map is that it also provides a highly detailed layout of the destination (KL) which even includes several hidden gems that may not be relatively well-known for people who are visiting KL for the first time. This feature is great for travellers who are stricken by time constraints as the app also provide itinerary suggestions for you.
Though, you should be aware that the app is quite a drain on the battery as it uses your phone’s location data even when it’s not in use. So, bring along a couple of portable charging devices and you’ll be fine.
4Malaysia Trip Planner
Speaking of itineraries, this next entry on our list contains a vast library of information on Malaysian tourist attractions.
The Malaysia Trip Planner app, designed and released by Malaysia Tourism Board, is the go-to app for anything related to attractions in the country. The app was specifically designed to showcase a curated list of must-see Malaysian attractions.
But the highlight of the free app lies in its city guides, which of course, includes KL as one of the 50 cities in its catalogue. Each travel guide comes with a sightseeing section with all major monuments and attractions so you’ll know what to see and what to miss. Moreover, the app also helpfully includes events and cultural festivals happening in the country, along with the dates and locations.
Additionally, offline maps are also available and a phrasebook of useful Malay phrases is also helpful to converse with the locals.
However, the app does seem to be quite outdated at this juncture. Nevertheless, we’d argue that the app does serve as a good introduction to the various attractions found in KL — and is worth a download, at least.
The Malaysia Trip Planner app is only available on iOS.
There is no lack of dining options in KL but if you have a dietary preference, eating out can be tricky. This goes out to the vegetarians, we know the struggles you faced, nothing else kills your mood quicker when you realise that you’ll be having a salad as your main. How about a tasty vegetarian burger in KL?
Great news! There is an app available to hunt down the best vegetarian food in town! Enter GoVeggie Malaysia app, a location-based mobile app that recommends dining options for vegetarians.
The GoVeggie app is only available on iOS.