Welcome to the first installment in our series highlighting useful destination-specific apps for travelers. I'll list apps that will help you get around, find things to do, and maybe save a few bucks.
Today's destination is New York City!
- Exit Strategy NYC Subway Map: One of the most daunting tasks for out-of-towners is navigating New York's massive transit system. Exit Strategy is a comprehensive app that includes full subway and bus maps for all five boroughs, a full map of Manhattan that works offline, suggests the best place to stand on a train for efficient exiting, and even shows you exactly where station entrances are located. For travelers eager to explore all corners of the Big Apple, this is the app you need. ($4.99)
- KickMap: OK, another subway map—I did say navigating New York can be daunting, didn't I? KickMap is much more basic than Exit Strategy but still solid. KickMap's main feature is its daytime and evening maps, meaning you'll know how to get where you're going whether it's 3 p.m. or 3 a.m. KickMap also improves on the MTA's own maps by distinguishing individual subway lines and clearly identifying neighborhoods, which the MTA's map only labels here and there. You can also use your iPhone's built-in GPS to find the nearest station. ($1.99)
- NYC Way: NYC Way is a free app that pretty much tells you everything you could want or need to know about New York City. Need to find an ice skating rink, coffee shop, or bowling alley? Done. Want to know if the restaurant you're considering has any health violations? Not a problem. Need a 24-hour pharmacy? Easy. Did I mention it's free?
- Time Out New York: Another free app, Time Out provides updated events listings, as well as reviews of arts, music, nightlife, restaurants, and bars. Listings can be sorted by "Critic's Picks" and "Free and Cheap."
- UpNext 3D Cities: Also available for Boston, Washington, D.C., and Austin, UpNext's free 3D maps are a fun way to navigate New York City. Simply scroll through the map, zoom in and out, and tap a building to see what's there, whether it's a bagel shop, ATM, or upscale restaurant.
Of course, these are only five out of countless New York-specific apps, so please share any others you like, and let me know if there are any cities you'd like covered. Thanks!