Top apps for living in Madrid (study placement abroad)

NakaiInternational Placements, Nakai Nangati, On Placement

One of the biggest benefits of having a smartphone/tablet is the ability to make use of the vast amount of amazing apps out there that enhance our lives in so many ways; from keeping us entertained, to navigating us around chaotic major cities. Here are my top apps that have helped me settle in and get around in Spain’s capital, Madrid.

City Mapper

Since, downloading this app, I have never stopped singing its praises. CityMapper, dubbed “The ultimate transport app” is a transport and direction app that is available in 39 urban cities across the world (Madrid included) that allows you to navigate in and around the city. The app allows you to enter where you would like to go, then shows you the route options available to you from wherever you are by whichever means of transport you prefer; cycling, walking, train, taxi etc. After selecting your preferred transportation method, the app will provide the route you must take, how long it will take you, approximately how much it may cost you and even provides real time running times for example, exactly what time the next train is and from what platform. It will even tell you how many calories you burn from each transport option! You are also able to set important places e.g. your home address, so if you’re ever lost, just tell the app you want to get home and it will figure out a route for you. Perfect!


Imagine a long, 8 hour day of work or lectures. The last thing you want to do when you finally return home is start cooking – unless that’s your relaxation method then, do you! But for many students, cooking is a chore, especially if it’s just for yourself. So you’re hungry, but simply cannot find the energy to cook, what do you do?

Deliveroo is an extremely popular app available in most major cities that allows you to choose your favourite meals from your favourite restaurant and have them delivered right to your doorstep, usually super quickly too! You can even track your order and see in real time what time your food will be delivered, who by and where exactly they are on the map. Yes, it really is that perfect.

My Taxi
MyTaxi, “Europe’s biggest licensed taxi and black cab app”, works just like Uber but gives rates that are considerably a lot cheaper. In case you are unfamiliar with apps like Uber, this app allows you to be connected to a nearby taxi available to come and pick you up from your location. You’re given an approximate price of the journey and the option to pay via the app by card, or straight to the driver by cash (something Uber doesn’t offer)! You can even book for a taxi in advance if you love to be organised – like me.

The official Renfe app is your one stop shop if you’re planning on travelling around Spain during your time here. Renfe is the national train provider in Spain, so it is more than likely you may be using their services during your stay. The app allows for the organisation of journeys quickly and accurately, displaying important information such as train times, prices and trip durations as well as up to date information on routes. You’re also able to store any tickets digitally via the app so no fuss about printing boarding passes – yay!

Now this is an app I use regularly even in the UK. Fever is an app that allows you find events happening around the city if you’re ever bored and in need of some entertainment! You can discover a variety of events from live music shows to taste tours, as well as buy and store the tickets for these events directly on your app! You’ll never be bored with an app like this.

Duolingo/Google translate
If you have no prior knowledge on Spanish, these two apps will assist you with one of the more daunting tasks of moving abroad – communication. Duolingo is an educational app that allows you to learn almost any language right on your phone! Take daily lessons on this app and watch yourself become bilingual in no time.
If a quick translation is what you need though, google translate can help. Many of us are aware of how google translate works on desktop, but the app takes the help it offers one step further by allowing you to take a picture of whatever you need translated and have the translation provided to you, or even have someone speak into the microphone and have a direct translation of what they said appear. Technology ay.

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