Cuba keeps on breaking records in the travel industry. The devastating impact of hurricane Irma and deadlock in the Washington – Havana relation might have slowed down the flow of visitors into that Caribbean archipelago, but the authorities are looking forward to surpassing the historic record of tourist arrivals.
One of the main problems faced by visitors is the lack of information. Printed guidebooks, besides being more expensive, are usually out of date, especially in the economically changing scenario of Cuba, where private business are gaining momentum. That’s the reason why most visitors rather use apps they have installed in their smartphones or tablets in an effort to better “understand” the country.
What are the apps everybody should install in mobile devices to make the most of Cuba? PanamericanWorld puts on the table a group of free apps, available for both Android and iOS, which would make the visit to Cuba easier, since they show where to stay, eat and totally enjoy Havana nights.
CONOCE CUBA, A MUST-HAVE GUIDEBOOK
Conoce Cuba is a useful promotion and search directory that shows updated information, in maps with integrated GPS, on hospitals, currency exchange houses, ATMs, banks, travel agencies, hairdressing salons, restaurants, cafeterias, cellphone workshops and event planners.
GUIARTE AND ¿KE HAY PA´HOY?, APPS TO ENJOY THE CUBAN CULTURAL LIFE
GuiArte is a mobile app that engulfs a comprehensive directory of culture-related professional profiles in Cuba, and it also includes an entertainment guide where artists advertise their work and live performances.
Download GuiArte: Android
GuiArte on Social Media: Facebook
¿Ke Hay Pa’ Hoy? is another useful app when it comes to deciding what to do in Havana nights. This directory lists the main concerts taking place at the Cuban capital, as well as the best places to dance, titles in theaters and movies.
Download ¿Ke Hay Pa´ Hoy?: Android
¿Ke Hay Pa´ Hoy? on Social Media: Facebook
ALAMESA, AN APP THAT HELPS US EAT IN CUBA
Where to eat in Cuba? That question is easily answered by AlaMesa, since its database comprises over 500 restaurants in Havana, as well as the rest of the country. It is described as one of the most interesting initiatives within the context of Cuban entrepreneurs related to new technologies and it is also one of the most successful apps in terms of positioning in such spaces as Google Play and iTunes.
MY CASA PARTICULAR, A PLATFORM TO FIND ACCOMMODATION IN EN CUBA
My Casa Particular is an app that allows users to make reservations online for lodgings in any area of Cuba. Its database stores contacts of over 2,500 houses and apartments throughout the country. Airbnb is perhaps the most presently used platform, but unlike the U.S. company, My Casa Particular’s headquarters are based in Cuba and its prices seem to be more competitive.
Visitors download My Casa Trip, which shows all bookings made through the platform. When arriving in Cuba, tourists do not need an Internet connection to use the app. For example, when they are at the airport they can check the route to the rented house. The booking is issued online, but when the customers land in Cuba, they can manage everything by using this offline app.
Download My Casa Trip: Android
ANDARIEGO, CUBA’S GOOGLE MAPS
Using Google Maps in Cuba is not easy at all. There is a growing number of Internet public access areas, but what can you do when you are lost and there is no Wi-Fi connection? Google’s service is useless in that situation, but Andariegocan do it, since this app is ranked among the best Cuban map browsers and destination managers. This app does not need Internet connection, since a locating program uses GPS services to put the person on the map and show healthcare facilities, stores, bus stops, travel agencies. A short description is provided on all these places, as well as contact data, services, schedules and available images or videos. Andariego also provides voice GPS navigation.
The app’s database includes maps of all Cuban provinces, it can measure distances between two spots and show descriptions of places within this distance.
Download Andariego: Android