“The world is being re-shaped by the convergence of social, mobile, cloud, big data, community and other powerful forces. The combination of these technologies unlocks an incredible opportunity to connect everything together in a new way and is dramatically transforming the way we live and work,” writes Marc Benioff and most of us will agree with this, though I’d like to re-phrase it all and say that we are poised to get re-shaped, re-formed, and re-aligned to travel more, travel informed, and travel to learn and share.
How does all this begin?
One truth that is intrinsically conjoined with travel is that we are constantly on the move. No, not restless and disturbed… but happy with moments that never find us comfortably seated in one place. Obviously then, for such a vast populace that loves to move around, the only way to effectively communicate is through an app that rides your mobile.
We therefore find almost all our needs emerging as apps… need for food, need for electronics, need for books, need for music, need for company, and even need for travel. We really do not have much logic in sitting with a laptop and browsing the net to help us plan our holiday or any other sort of travel.
Smartphones direct us with assistance
Yes, this is true… and so I decided to finally see if the ClearTrip App does what Apps claim to do or not? Just guess what I tapped on first? Obviously, I tapped on ‘offers’ and was first mildly and then wildly surprised at series of them on domestic and international flights, hotels, and even buses… and I murmured, ‘This can’t be true! I am surprised why I have stayed away from this mobile app until now.’ So you see, smartphones do direct us with assistance… and this was just the start.
I first decided to do a hotel search for a trip that I have already been to but am planning again in a few months. Jordan has impressed me and I’ve just been there on a GAdventures trip… and so I said to myself, ‘Let’s see which hotels this app recommends.’ Well, the ClearTrip app made the hotel scene in Amman more than just clear and what impressed me was its ability to toggle between a list and a map view. I could see the exact location of each of the hotels and knew at once the ones that I would short-list due to their proximity to the places I plan to visit there.
The flights section on this app is a breeze and I decided to check the prices and the range of flights from Delhi to London… well, frankly I was disappointed to see that my favourite Virgin Atlantic was nowhere to be seen, but then I guess, it is always your favourite vs the most appropriate choice. But later when I applied the airline filter I was able to seek my favourite one as well… which just means that apps need some getting used to and, therefore, it is a great idea to download this one right now even if you have no plan to travel right away. You will obviously go tip-tap on the app and become more conversant with all the little vantage nooks that even I might have missed. More importantly, the app will keep you within range of travel possibilities and this is something that has the potential to lead to real travel.
By the way, if you think travel is all about booking hotels and flights, you’re wrong. There are buses and trains as well… and this app connects to your IRCTC account and enables not just booking of tickets but also gives you access to a train calendar and live train status. Imagine not having to search for a desktop or fight with your son or daughter for a few minutes on the laptop to do a train arrival search… you can do it all on your mobile.
The ClearTrip App has another cutting edge advantage as it stores all the information of your cards, has a wallet to keep you floating fiscally even when your cards and banks are inaccessible… and finally, you do need your travel plans, don’t you. The app isn’t ready with all the assistance to help you make your travel plan… but asks you to go to the website and do it there. Well, I’m surely waiting for this update in the app and will love to plan my travels on my mobile app as I jog from one trip to another!
The App advantage
As I have mentioned earlier, I was always an app-sceptic… but after using this one I’ve realised that I much prefer the warm proximity of travel even as I move from one place to another and this is what this app gives. By the way, an app is only there to help you re-shape, re-form, and re-align your travel plans… it is entirely up to you to actually graduate from reading about a place and planning to travel to actually doing it all.
To travel is more important than to plan. Even Stephen R. Covey writes: “…to learn and not to do is really not to learn. To know and not to do is really not to know.” But the first step is always to know that a great app exists… and to make the right move to install it on your smartphone.
Cleartrip app is for all platforms.
03 August 2015