Call me silly, but this time I set the goal to use only my smartphone to handle the whole trip to the US, either use native apps or mobile sites to make reservations, bookings, find restaurants, find sightseeing’s, get entertained or whatever else would be needed.
It all started with using the Skyscanner app to find an affordable flight to New York and back. The Booking.com app was used to book the Hotel in NY for the first two nights. Getting the ESTA travelling permit was done using the mobile version of the US ESTA Site.
The United on-board entertainment program was rather average. Who cares anyway, as I had already downloaded Fargo season 1 and 2 at home for the Netflix app. Thanks to the USB port in my seat I did not have to worry about enough juice for my mobile. Anyway, the screen of my Samsung Galaxy 9+ was not much smaller than the low-res screen of the inflight entertainment system.
After arriving at Newark airport and not getting so quickly through customs (there is no app for that), I ordered an Uber, which dropped us at the Hotel in Tribeca.
The sushi restaurant for dinner was booked via the Opentable app, after checking their rating on google maps app and cross checking it via the Tripadvisor and Yelp app. The delicious sushi we ate was effortlessly paid for via Samsung Pay. The mobile Ticketmaster site offered me tickets for all the musicals on Broadway or any other great event in the City I could ever dream of.
After two engaging days in New York, we decided to go on a little road trip and visit Boston. Booking the flat in Boston was again done via booking.com, whereas the reservation for the car did not work via their app – therefore I used the rentalcars.com app. Picking up the car was easy - besides queuing forever at Dollar rental cars.
On the way to Boston, google maps did a great job as it rerouted us just in the right moment to avoid a huge traffic jam caused by an accident on the highway. The little detour let us enjoy the beauty of the Indian summer on small roads through the country side. On Spotify I found the ideal playlist for the New England road trip.
At the planned lunch stop, we sadly missed our first lobster roll which was strongly recommended by several yelp users – the little harbor restaurant was already closed for the season and the owner obviously forgot to update his opening hours via the google mybusiness app.
Upon arrival in Boston we received the key for the flat through the Keycafe app, after using the StayAlfred mobile site to do the step by step picture-rich check-in process.
I discovered the whale watching tour, which was truly great, on the Getyourguide app and booked it on the mobile Boston Harbor Tour site. Thanks to ParkWhiz I found an affordable parking space close to the harbor. The amazing whales we spotted were instantly shared with the whole world on Instagram, Twitter and on Facebook.
Besides doing all my mails on the Gmail app using the google voice to text feature, I used Whatsapp to do all the calls to Switzerland and connected myself with 5 new people on linkedin.com during my US trip. After four days of intensive mobile internet use I had to open the mySwisscom app as I had to buy a new 1GB data package.
On our way back, we stopped in Newport and just like google search strongly recommended we did the wonderful cliff walk and saw the mind-blowing summerhouses (rather castles than houses) and rated it with 5 stars.
Back in New York, I picked up the Airbnb flat key in a 7-Eleven – again via Keycafe.
As we already had to check out at 11am and the flight was only in the evening, I used luggagehero.com to find a storage space nearby. The closest storage facility was a Chinese nail studio, which was a bit awkward for a short moment, but at the end the service was as professional as advertised.
After doing the mobile check-in via the United app, I ordered Uber to bring us back to the airport. And it was only due to Patrick, the best Uber driver ever, that we made it to the airport just on time after more than two hours stop-and-go traffic and did not miss our flight.
It is almost needless to say, most of my US trip I saw through the little 6.2 inch mobile screen, at least in high resolution.
Welcome to the brave new mobile world that we are living in!
PS: And last but not least: On the mobile game app “Guns of Boom” I am now on level 22.
This blog post was originally published on LinkedIn.