The 10 apps you need to survive in a big city


When you’re new to a city or just want to discover new spots, you can turn to your smartphone and download several helpful applications. There are apps for almost everything, from rating restaurants to public bike services, but these few are our favorites. We’re deeming them the best city apps you need for all your city adventures.

Trip planning: Citymapper

This is the best transit app out there for getting around the city and navigating public transportation. Simply type in your destination, and Citymapper will present you with multiple maps for walking, the subway, buses, bike, car sharing, etc. By comparing the different routes, arrival times, and costs, it makes the travel to your destination efficient and easy. The app even gives you the option to filter out the most “rain-safe” route as well as sends you alerts for when lines are disrupted.

This maps app is available (both on iOS and Android) in some of the biggest cities in the US, including NYC, Chicago, San Francisco, Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, and Seattle. Travel stress-free in these cities and more.

Recommendations: Spotted by Locals

Spotted by Locals is a city guide, made from the insights and favorites of the locals who live there. These experts handpick hidden gems, like local restaurants and cafes, for you to explore the neighborhood while avoiding the usual tourist traps. Note that each guide costs $3.99 per city, but it can be used throughout your entire trip (even offline) with detailed maps.

Finance: Mint

Living in a city can be expensive, especially if you don’t choose coliving at Common. Mint helps you easily keep track of your budget, spending, credit score, and bills — all in one place — with alerts for payments and unusual charges. Reduce your financial stress, and enjoy city living.

Other transportation apps

Via is a taxi/ride-sharing app that exists in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Washington, D.C., and a few other cities. When you submit your destination, Via finds multiple passengers heading in the same direction and books you into a shared trip. Your travel time, even with the pickups, should be comparable to a taxi.

Turo is the app to download if you’re looking for car rentals. Get a better and cheaper deal than you can get at the airport kiosks; you can select your car type, duration, and features and have the car delivered to your location of choice. It’s peer-to-peer car sharing, so you’ll get to know the owner and have credible insurance and safe trips. By the way, if you’re looking for parking in the city, SpotHero is the most helpful app.

Safety: Citizen

Though currently only available in New York and San Francisco Bay Area, this safety app will be expanding to more cities as it sends real-time updates on alerts, 911 police and fire calls, and crimes near you. With this app, people are able to be aware of the dangers in your neighborhood, avoid route traffic, and promptly evacuate affected areas.

Events: Eventbrite

Find things to do and events to attend on Eventbrite. You can get last-minute tickets to cultural and networking events as well as parties and concerts in your area. You’re also welcome to create your own event and invite people or sell your tickets on this community-centered app.

Lifestyle: Minibar and Talkspace

Hosting a party and need wine, liquor, or beer? Or is it too cold outside to grab a beer at the bar across the street? Minibar delivers your choice of drink to your front door with just a few taps on the app. They even have cocktail recipes that you can use to shake things up.

Talkspace is an affordable mobile therapy app where users can find a licensed therapist fitted to their needs: anything from depression to couples therapy. Once you’re matched with a therapist, you can set aside some time at any point during the day and write to them. On average, your therapist will respond 1-2 times a day and even offer a video chat.

Your membership at Common negates the need to download and pay for all of these apps. For one, you get exclusive discounts for apps, including Minibar and Talkspace, that you can simply claim on the Connect By Common app. Other perks include membership discounts at popular gyms, discounts on national clothing, linen, and food and drink brands.

You can also RSVP to free curated events around the city such as cooking classes, yoga, and cooking classes, meaning you won’t have to go out of your way to buy expensive tickets and meet new people.

Feel at home in a new city with these few apps and a Common membership. We have homes across all major U.S. cities: New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco Bay Area, Washington, D.C., and Chicago. Tour our homes today.

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