When traveling to a foreign country, there is one key word we must always keep in mind: foreign. The name blatantly implies that you are visiting an unfamiliar place, meaning you need to be even more prepared for any and all circumstances than when at home. Yet it seems many think their travel safety worries are over once they make it through the airport without any increased terror alerts and the like.
However, how many people actually know what to do or who to call when faced with an emergency while in a foreign land? With Global Help by Loctory GmbH, you never have to worry about having access to the right number or information ever again. Quick, simple and easy-to-use, Global Help provides users with the emergency telephone numbers and addresses you may need in any of 198 countries in 7 different languages. From Austria to Cambodia and Ecuador to Kenya, Global Help helps world travelers stay safe and prepared in all four corners of the earth.
When you start up the application, Global Help will begin by displaying the ‘Countries’ tab, which allows you to scroll through the list of available countries alphabetically or type in the name of the country you are looking for in the Search bar at the top of the screen.
If you visit specific countries more frequently than others, you may want to add them to your list of favorites so they are always easily accessible. To do so, tap the ‘Favorites’ icon in the bottom navigation bar. When on this screen, tap ‘Edit’ in the upper right corner to reveal a ‘+’ icon on the left. Tap the ‘+’ icon and you will be presented with the list of countries from the first tab so you may choose which to add to your personal list of favorites.
Under the ‘Preferences’ tab, users may choose their nationality (or nationalities if your are a citizen of multiple countries). This will help narrow down the phone numbers provided when looking up any given country. Though the content may vary from country to country, the information and emergency numbers listed may include (but are not limited to): fire, police and emergency medical services; poison hotline; automobile breakdown services; credit card cancellation hotlines; foreign agencies, embassies and consulates; mountain rescue services; distress at sea; Divers Alert Network (DAN). Users even have the option of editing the provided numbers or adding their own if they desire.
(According to the developer, the next update, which is slated for early September, promises additional data for embassies worldwide, as well as airline hotlines and iOS4 and iPhone 4 compatibility. This update will also fix the clipping of the string ‘Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ when in embassy view.)
Any of the numbers can be dialed directly within the application if using an iPhone. For those using an iPod Touch, your device immediately becomes a handy directory, complete with all the emergency information you may need. In fact, if you need to get to a certain address, but do not speak the language well, simply turn your device sideways and the address will be displayed across the entire screen, making it readable for taxi drivers and easing your burden immensely.
Global Help’s greatest feature stems from the fact that you do not need an Internet connection in order to access every ounce of information the application offers. All the information has been programmed directly into the application itself, making everything offline accessible because, in an emergency, there’s no time to run around looking for a Wi-Fi or 3G hot spot.
The envelope icon to the far right of the navigation bar also provides another wonderful convenience. Under this, the ‘Feedback’ tab, users can learn more about Global Help, report any changes to a country’s information, report a problem, or tell a friend. And, with the promise to consistently listen to users’ suggestions and offer regular updates, Global Help makes you feel much safer just by downloading it.
*Special vacation season sale price ends September 1.
Global Help requires iPhone OS 3.0 or later and is compatible with iPhone and iPod Touch. A small expedite fee was paid by the developer to speed up the publication of this review.