If you've never heard of Grab and Eatigo, this list of must-have apps in Thailand is for you.
These apps are for anyone who's coming to Thailand.
Whether you're coming as a backpacker for a week or relocating there, you need them on your phone.
These apps will help you get around, save money and time, and make your life a lot easier.
Let's jump into the list of apps you need to have in Thailand.
Google Maps should always be on your phone, no matter what.
It's easy to use, work really well to help get around anywhere, including in Thailand, and it even has reviews and information about the places around you.
If like me you try to have as few apps as possible on your phone, Google Maps is like Yelp, Tripadvisor, Waze, and *insert your favorite travel app* altogether.
Don't forget to download maps offline when you go to new places to access the map even when you don't have access to internet.
Thai is a tough language for translator apps and I'm yet to see one that does a perfect job.
Like the other translator apps I've tried, Google Translate isn't perfect with Thai but it does a good enough job to get around.
And it has one feature that even the best Thai translator app doesn't have, it does a live translation using your phone's camera.
If you want to translate a street sign or a menu, all you have to do is pull out your phone, open Google Translate and point the camera at it so the app can translate it in real-time.
It can also translate what's written in Thai on your photos and screenshots.
There are so many apps to book hotels nowadays but from my experience, there are two good reasons to stick with Booking.com:
- The large range of options they have
- Their support.
Booking in Thailand has all types of accommodation, including hostels, hotels, villas, pool villas, apartments...
And even if they don't always have the cheapest rates, when you always book with them you unlock extra discounts with the Genius program.
So at the end of the year, it's almost the same as if you went always for the cheapest rate, except that you don't have to switch app all the time and you have all your bookings in one place.
I love Airbnb for its clean design and the variety of their listing.
Where Booking or Agoda can be confusing with all the options they have, it's always easy to find what you want on Airbnb.
But the main reason to use Airbnb in Thailand, other than to find a place to stay, is all the "experiences" they offer on the site.
They have all sorts of unique ways to visit Thailand, from "Instagram tours" with pro photographers to cooking classes and even nightlife tours.
Grab is the Asian equivalent of Uber, but even more powerful.
Grab has different types of cars, motorbike taxis and in some cities, you can even rent a car.
The app also has food delivery, chauffeurs, package delivery, and offers a ton of special rewards and coupons that you can buy with the points you earn with each booking.
When possible, I prefer to stick to AirAsia to fly in and around Thailand.
And there are a few reasons for that :
- They have really good rates. Not always the cheapest, but really close most of the time.
- They have a good quality of service, especially for a low-cost company.
- They always have special deals with really cheap flights, in and around Thailand.
- Their app works great and allows you to book flights, do your online check-in, check your flight status, and even work as the boarding pass for some flights, all from your phone.
Overall, their app and service are way better than other local companies so whenever possible, fly with AirAsia.
Eatigo is by far the best app ever invented and it’s as essential as Grab or Line if you're in Thailand.
Eatigo is the best app to find discounts for restaurants.
It has a selection of restaurants with discounts of up to 50% on the whole menu.
That's it. There's no catch.
The app is free to use and gives you huge discounts on all types of restaurants including some of the best high-end hotel buffets in Thailand.
If you don't find the restaurant you want on Eatigo, at least book your table with Chope.
Chope is also free to use and gives you rewards for every meal you book through the app.
Everybody in Thailand has a love and hate relationship with Foodpanda.
On one side, they have an amazing selection of restaurants and always offer special deals and discounts.
On the other hand, the order tracking system kind of suck and their customer support is almost non-existent.
But as long as they keep offering great deals and send discount coupons, it is still a must-have app in Thailand for your Netflix and chill nights.
You can find other food delivery apps and a list of recommended restaurants to order from in my post here.
Who still goes grocery shopping in 2020?
Happyfresh has all the main supermarkets and big shops in Thailand on their app.
Instead of going to the different shops, you can order from all of them on the same app and have it delivered to your door.
If most of the world use Messenger or WhatsApp, in Thailand everybody uses Line to message their friends, family and even colleagues.
If you hear someone ask you for your line ID, they want to know your username on Line to "Add you"
You can get by without it if you're just traveling in Thailand, but if you live here or if you're single, you're gonna need it.
The app is also becoming more like Wechat and is constantly adding new features like LinePay that let you pay with your phone at some retailers or LineMan, a messenger and delivery service.
That's it for the must-have apps in Thailand.
I limited myself to 11 apps but in reality, there are a lot more apps I could add.
Depending on how long you stay and what you do in Thailand, there are other apps you want to have a look at.
If you're single, check my list of the best dating apps in Thailand.
From Tinder to Thaifriendly, all the most popular dating apps in Thailand are there.
With the high level of pollutions that Thailand has seen in the last few years, especially in Bangkok and in the north (Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Pai...) it's always good to check the pollution before you go out or plan a trip.
The most popular App for that is AirVisual.
If you have a Thai bank account, Transferwise is the cheapest and fastest way to send money to Thailand.
Coming for the First Time in Thailand ?
Now it's your turn.
What are for you the most useful apps in Thailand? What are the apps you use the most?
Let me know in the comments.
And if you have any questions about any of the apps above, free free to ask me anything.