Moving to a new country and a new city is exciting. It is also a bit daunting as you lose your bearings. But with a little help from technology, like smartphone applications, settling in your new life might be easier and faster than expected. So, here are seven free apps that should facilitate your life in Vancouver.
Master public transportation
Punctuality is one of the 7 major values that define Canadian society. Being on time is a sign of respect. To avoid giving a bad first impression, notably for a job interview, don’t be late and even show up 15 minutes early. So if you need to use public transportation to go to your meeting, it is highly recommended that you plan your trip in advance. The Transit and Citymapper apps enable you to do that. They are real-time urban travel apps that will show you the best itinerary to your destination and your travel time. They also notify you of any service disruptions and help you locate bus stops as well as Skytrain and bike share stations.
Hail a cab from your smartphone
Depending on your destination, public transportation might not always be available or the most convenient solution. You might then have to take a cab to go to your next meeting. With the Zoro app, you won’t have to wait long minutes on the side of the road, before getting a taxi. You will be able to hail a cab from your phone or book it in advance. You will also get a fare estimate...and you might be positively surprised because cabs are way cheaper in Canada than in Europe.
Optimize your lunch break
Thanks to the Street Food Vancouver app, you will be able to locate the nearest food trucks and food carts. This app is useful in a country where lunch breaks tend to be short. According to a study by OfficeTeam, more than half of Canadian workers spend thirty minutes or less for lunch. But no matter how short they are, lunch breaks are generally seen as an opportunity to socialize with your colleagues; 45% of workers use this time to interact with peers. So next time, if you feel like eating a Japadog or a Korean Burrito, don’t forget to ask your colleagues if they want to join you in your food extravaganza!
Attend local events
Whether you want to pitch a project, meet potential employers, widen your network or strengthen your knowledge on a specific topic, you will need to attend local events. Vancouver hosts a large variety of them: from conferences to workshops and speed-jobing to networking events. The EventBrite app will provide you with a list of local business and leisure events. It will also enable you to register and get tickets to these events. Downloading this app is a great way to stay informed of the next CONNECTWorking and Wine&Learn events organized by BC Talents.
Manage business cards
Networking is a must-have skill in Canada, to get access to more job opportunities. Whenever you are going to meet new people, you need to be prepared and ready to connect. There’s a good chance you’ll be giving and collecting business cards. That’s when CamCard comes in handy as this app can scan, manage, synchronize and exchange business cards. This app will make you save a lot of time by entering the contact information directly onto your smartphone.
When you arrive in a new place, you often have to start from scratch and rebuild your social network. A good way to do that is obviously to go out and meet new people, which can be easier said than done. Fortunately, with the Meetup app, you will have the opportunity to join communities of people in your area, who share the same interests as you. More importantly, you will meet up with them at local events. Whatever your passions or hobbies are (sport, art, technology…), there is a good chance that you will find a group that fits you. In addition, the platform includes career and business meetups, where you can grow your professional network.
Explore the wilderness
Outdoor lifestyle is part of Vancouver’s identity. Vancouverites are proud of the incredible natural sites that surround them. They never miss an opportunity to explore this beautiful landscape during their free time. Thereby, there is a good chance that your future colleagues will be keen on hiking, trail running or mountain biking. With the Vancouver Trails app, you will get all the necessary information to benefit from the numerous trails that exist in the region, like a real Vancouverite.
Now that you have loaded your smartphone with these useful applications, make sure to join us at our next CONNECTWorking to meet other members of the francophone community and learn more about your new environment.