Traveling is fun but can often come with the challenges of language differences especially when you travel internationally. Granted that a lot of countries speak English and knowing how to speak English can take you far and wide, occasionally though, you do need to know how to speak the language of the country you’re visiting to have a better trip. And, unless you’re multilingual and have the ability to speak a hundred languages, you might find yourself occasionally needing a little help with translation, speaking, reading, and understanding a language.
Of course, you can certainly get by in most places if you limit your stay to the touristy areas and speak some English, but think how much fun it’ll be to have the freedom to go to any part of the country you’re visiting without worrying about how to communicate with locals. Think how nice it would be to be able to read and understand road signs, posters, other bulletin in a foreign country so you don’t feel lost. And think how much more adventurous and more fun your trip could be if you’re able to order food from the local menu and tell the waiter exactly what you want without having to only point at some generic meal on the menu and nod your head to everything the waiter says. All this magic is possible through translation apps.
Translation apps are exactly how they sound - apps that help us translate one language to another so that we can comprehend what is being said to us and can respond intelligently to the other party. There are hundreds of good translation apps that can get the job done but we’ve narrowed down to three great apps based on ease of use, pricing, and reliability.
iTranslate is one of the most popular translation apps used by travelers. The basic version is free however the premium version costs $4.99 per month. The app is available in both Android (Google Play) and Apple (iTunes) versions so it’s easy to use with your smart devices including your Apple watch. The free version has to be used online while the paid version allows you to still translate when you’re offline. iTranslate allows users to speak in over 100 languages all over the world and understand each other. The app is really fun to use. You speak into your phone and the app converts your words to text and translates it to the language of your choice. It’s no wonder why it’s ranked highly and has been downloaded over 100 million times and in almost every country in the world. It is simply one of the top translation apps for travel.
iTranslateVoice, not to be confused with iTranslate, allows you to speak into your phone and your words are automatically translated to the language of your choice with decent accuracy. It also come pre-loaded with common phrases that most traveler use so you can quickly get your message across to the other person. iTranslateVoice also allows you to connect your device with other people and have a seamless conversation in your own language! Like iTranslate, this app is available for both Andriod (Google Play) and Apple iTunes), however, it’s free to download and use.
Google Translate is quite popular and is available on Apple (iTunes) as well as Android (Google Play). It is currently ranked #1 in “reference” on the Apple store. Google Translate has the abilities to translate 103 languages by text, and even when it’s offline, can still translate 59 languages. We’ve used Google Translate successfully in many continents including Africa, Asia, Europe, The Americas, and Oceania. It can also translate texts in images and photos, and is able to translate bilingual conversations immediately for a seamless 2-way conversation. Google Translate also allows a user to draw characters rather than use a keyboard when handwriting is more convenient to get the message across quicker. You can also create and save a phrase book of commonly used words and sentences so that you’re able to translate faster the next time you need to say the same time. And best of all, Google Translate is free to use.
These three apps are by no means the only translation apps for travelers. There are many more and if you searched the apps stores, you might find others that are more suitable for travel to your specific destination.