Ever wanted a virtual companion on your travels? Someone that can give you expert local advice, but also check that you’re back at your hotel after a night at the pub? For a lot of people that travel solo the new extra features of Tep Wireless can just that. Tep Wireless have recently created their new app Tep +, one of the best travel apps out there if you ask me. They have awesome new extra features called Kitestring and the local concierge, read on to find out what they’re all about!
What is Tep Wireless?
Tep Wireless is run by avid travellers, which know all about the excitement of travelling to faraway places, and the frustration at not being able to share it with friends and family back home. Tep Wireless was born in 2011 to make life easier and cheaper for travellers, by providing them with a wireless mobile hotspot while avoiding international roaming rates. These are known as “Teppy” devices; your pocket wifi or mobile hotspot. It works like a wireless router at home, where anyone with the password and close enough can connect to it. With the difference that it’s small and easy to carry around, it works all over the world and doesn’t require any complicated setup or installing cables. Prices change depending on whether you buy or rent a Teppy, you can do either depending on how much you travel and think you will need it. You can rent a Teppy for £6.95 a day, or buy one for £85 for the device and then use it for £5.50 a day.
Kitestring: Your virtual overprotective mum
So what exactly is Kitestring? They call it “your virtual overprotective mom”, since it’s an automatic service that will alert your emergency contacts back home if you don’t check in. Kitestring is a free SMS-based service available for anyone. Let me talk you through the details of how it works:
- You set the timer and write an emergency text – eg. If you’re travelling solo and want to head out to a bar for a few drinks, you might set it to check that you’re back at your hotel in a few hours time
- Choose your emergency contacts – this can be whoever you want it to be, mum, boyfriend / girlfriend, flatmate etc. If you don’t want to they don’t even have to confirm their numbers or know that they are your emergency contacts (although it’s recommended they do know)
- That’s it. You now have a virtual overprotective mum that will check in on you whenever you want! – if you don’t reply to the text that Kitestring sends you to check in it will automatically alert your emergency contacts
Your local concierge:
On to the next cool new extra; the local concierge! Imagine travelling in a new city during a quick weekend getaway, you want to see all the highlights but also explore off the beaten track places, where only the locals go. You could Google it, see how many travel blogs come up and read through a lot of generic “Top 10” and “Best of” articles, or you could text your local concierge and get a specific answer immediately. Sounds much better doesn’t it!
Once you place an order for a local concierge you will receive a short survey that will match you to the right person, they will know the date you arrive and will get in touch with you then. You can contact your local concierge anytime between 9am and 8pm, either via the Tep + App or via WhatsApp, which are both free to use as long as you have a working internet connection. Your local concierge will text you every morning with “Today’s Hidden Gem”; a personalized suggestion of something interesting or fun to do. I love this new feature that Tep introduced, since it’s a great way to get insider tips on the best areas to explore, restaurants to eat, even how to get around a city, without having to go through the trouble of researching it yourself. Furthermore, the local concierges are, as the name suggests, locals, and will therefore give you better insights than a Google search would.
Other cool things to know:
The Tep + App is also a call and messaging app, that offers super cheap international rates and reliable connection. It has a lot of similar features to WhatsApp and other messaging apps, where you can create groups, share pictures, call, text and video chat to other users within the app for free. The added benefit is that you can call and text any number worldwide, also phone numbers that are not on the Tep + App (eg. to call your grandma who doesn’t have a smart phone while you’re travelling on the other side of the world). The app is free to download, to access the paid features you will need to top up credit to your number.
The Tep + App is a great addition to the service already provided by Tep Wireless. On top of a reliable internet connection, you can now have access to a virtual overprotective mom and the expert advice of a local concierge. Whether you’re travelling solo in Thailand and want to feel safer, or want to discover where the locals eat in Rome, Tep + can become the perfect virtual travel companion. Have you used Tep or the Tep + App before? Let me know what you think in the comments below!
Download Tep + for free on the App Store or Google Play for Android here!
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* Disclosure: I love the Tep + App so much that I reached out to the Tep Wireless team to ask if I could help them promote the app. All views and opinions are mine. *