I have been using this app for quite a while, but it's only since the weekend just gone that I have realised what a gem it truly is.
After meeting up with friends over a coffee, we decided that we should look into booking a city break away in the new year. Normally, one person it left with the task, and a gazillion emails on flight options later we either give up or someone ends up with less hair! Not this time, while we were all there, I took out the phone and opened the Skyscanner app, selected dates that suited us all, inputted the information and in less than a minute, we had our options right in front of us.
Skyscanner is the handiest go-to app for checking flights. Not only is it free for iPhone & android, there are no service charges for booking through Skyscanner either. 'SkyScanner saves you time and money by finding the cheapest flights, fast. It's free, flexible and simple to use'. - Basically, it does exactly what it says on the tin!
It is so easy to use, just input where you are looking to fly to and where from, it even lets you have a wide search, so instead of selecting Dublin, you can select Ireland, and it will pull up flights from all suitable airports in Ireland flying to your destination.
You can also filter your results by price, airline and take-off and landing times. Skyscanner has the option of chart view, which lets you see prices for flights across a particular week or month.
For those feeling a bit more adventurous, you can select the 'anywhere' destination, choose your travel dates, and it will show you what countries are available and the cheapest price for flights to that country. How much time does that save you jumping back and forth on Ryanair's app looking for the cheapest city break for a particular weekend?? A lot, plus your nerves will stay intact ;) For that reason alone, this app gets my vote!
Skyscanner will give you your journey breakdown, showing which airline carrier, flight departing/arrival times, flight duration and of course the price per person, in a simple eye scanning layout.
Once you have chosen your flight, Skyscanner gives you the option of sharing flight information (through email, social media, text etc., handy if you are researching that group city break!) or booking the flights. Once you hit 'book', Skyscanner will redirect you to the airline carrier to continue with your purchase.
So have you any plans yet for the October bank holiday?! Skyscanner may give you a few options ;)
Phlok - Connecting Local People with Local Business.
Phlok is all about connecting local people with local business. It's a unique Irish social media platform that rewards you for shopping local, it's also a free app available in the app store and Google Play.
Every merchant and business that you see on Phlok, gives you the availability to collect Phlok points. These points are a virtual currency and worth real money (1,000 points = €1). Just from signing up, you receive 2,000 points! Phlok points are unique, in that you can collect and spend them in any participating Phlok store by simply clicking on your points total at the top of the screen and follow the simple instructions.
You can collect Phlok points by checking into locations, following Phlok businesses and making purchases in Phlok stores. It is quite addictive building up your Phlok points and you can also collect points by inviting your friends to join! With the app, you can check out where your friends have checked in and see how you compare with their phlok points, it has most certainly has brought out that competitive streak in me!
Phlok is very much a social media platform with a focus on shopping local. When you sign up with Phlok you set up your profile and it gives you the option of signing in through email or facebook. Once logged in, the app uses your GPS to locate business using Phlok close to you. Your mobile will even automatically alert you when you are near an offer! It also has a map option, so that you can search locations and business to see what other offers are in place. You can see a live feed of people who have checked-in and received points in doing so. There is also the option to send group or private messages to people in your 'Phlok'.
Each business also has a profile, with information such as address, phone number, website and what their latest offer is etc. and they can also update their status with relevant information to their customers that will appear in your news-feed/activity page.
Phlok has numerous different local businesses signed up to bring you a wide variety of different categories that will benefit all users of Phlok. There are local businesses from bars to motoring to butchers to clothes shops all signed up, wanting to pass on the reward for encouraging you to shop local. Phlok can only grow stronger and in the coming months you will see it rolling out into more counties across Ireland and abroad. Recently is has landed in the UK and only last week gained press coverage in Ilkley.
Another great app to come from the Emerald Isle, definite one to download and watch this Phlok grow!
Check out Phlok's blog here.
Publin is the new free app to find pubs and drinks promotions that are on in and around the city. The app gives you the option of searching for a particular pub or you can use the GPS on your phone to locate pubs close to you and give you information on those pubs such as drink prices, offers, wifi, opening hours, disabled toilets, craft beer etc. You can also search pubs by amenities, for example beer gardens, handy for those (rare) sunny Sunday sessions! All this information in one handy app.
The app is also linked with their facebook and twitter feeds, so that you can keep up to date with the daily deals that are currently going on in the city. Publin seem to have a good relationship with the different pubs around the city, who will contact Publin about their offers.
The creators have plans to further develop the app to include deals from pubs, event listing and other entertainment.
It's a well know fact that Google Play and the App Store are overrun with different photo apps to choose from. Which, if you are/were like me in the beginning of my smartphone days, found the app store a little daunting with all the choice of different apps/tools to edit your pictures. So when I came across this little gem I had to share!
'PhotoGrid - the best collage maker' is an absolute beaut of a collage app! Not only is it the only go-to app to combine your photos into paneled, framed collages, is has a very easy to use interface, which ensures that when you are creating your collage you get to have fun in doing so and not get bogged down with the technicalities!
First, you choose which mode you want to use for your collage, they have several options here available: Grid HD, Free HD, High, Wide and Single HD. Secondly, you select the pictures (max 9) you want from the gallery on your phone or the cloud -facebook, Instagram, Flikr, Dropbox or google image. PhotoGrid lets you choose a layout or it will select one and if you are not happy with it all you have to do is shake your phone to rearrange the layout!
What I really love about the app is that you can hone in on each of the images and move them around to fit as you wish, and rotate and flip each picture, add filters, borders, frames and text. You can be as creative as you like!
Once you are happy with your collage, you can download it, save it and share it on all social platforms!