App: Field Trip by Google
For: iPhones and Android phones
by Eric Pawlakos Edited by Cynthia Brian
Google likes to call their Field Trip app “a virtual local tour guide….” Well, that’s a pretty accurate description of what this app does for the user. It does act like a local tour guide that can give you information about almost anything that is in the vicinity of your current location. This information includes a listing of popular attractions, restaurants, shopping suggestions, and local background information, both historical and architectural. User reviews (including Google’s Zagats) for many of these listings are readily available and are quite helpful. Because Google has over 80 publishing partners for Field Trip, you get much more than just a listing of what to do and see. For example, you might be linked to a magazine article about a famous local restaurant or alerted to the opening of a new one. This app also presents the user with useful deals such as online discounts at local restaurants. You can adjust the features of Field Trip to send you frequent alerts about deals and ‘hotspots’ or you can turn off the alerts completely. If you are traveling in an unfamiliar location, it is quite helpful to be guided to the best places to eat and drink as well as some of the more unusual places to shop and products to buy. Field Trip also lets you know of the ‘hidden’ places that the locals like to frequent. Whether you are planning to travel far from home or stay fairly local, let Field Trip act as your virtual travel partner.