簸箕,App it up: Essential downloads to simplify Beijing living,马尔代夫旅游

The must-have apps for Beijing living you need to downlo獾ad now

Beijing is a c卯ity where there's virtually an app for everything, from buying groceries to checking the metro timetable to monitoring the air quality. Whether you're new to Beijing or are a long-time Beijinger, we all need a refresher course sometimes on this city's must-have apps. Arguably, the most important app you'll need is a wall-jumper, but luckily for you, all the ones that follow don't need a jumper to make your Beijing life just that little bit eas簸箕,App it up: Essential downloads to simplify Beijing living,马尔代夫旅行ier.


WeChat (微信)

PriceFree (iOS and Android)

What is it?An instant messenger, calling and ePayment app all in one

Use it for Instant messaging, voice messaging, cashless purchasing, following businesses, buying rail and flight tickets, cinema tickets, shopping on JD.com

Best featureBesides all the basics that all messaging and calling apps have, WeChat has stickers and a brilliant split-bill function

LanguageEnglish, Chinese and 16 more

If you're reading this, you're probably already familiar with WeChat (we hope). The one app to rule them all, WeChat is known as the super app of the Chinese online sphere. Not only is it the primary instant messenger app the entire country uses, once you've connec簸箕,App it up: Essential downloads to simplify Beijing living,马尔代夫旅行ted a Chinese bank account to your WeChat, it's also an easy and safe method of cashless payment.

One of the more entertaining features on WeChat is the stickers section. These tiny an孟雄伟imations perfectly capture any mood or message, and you can even make stickers of yourself (click here to learn how). In addition, WeChat also has a brilliant built-in translation function. Simply take a photo of Chinese text or press on any given instant message and choose the translation function.

Alipay (支付宝)

Price Free (iOS and Android)

What is it?An ePayment app

Use it forCashless purchasing, large bank transfers, kuaidi (parcel delivery), the ePayment app used for Taobao

Best featureCan link to a foreign bank account

LanguageEnglish and Chinese

Alipay is perhaps most useful for large purchases and international bank transfers as the app can be linked to a foreign bank card and can also be used outside of China. However, transferring money to friends within China is easiest on WeChat. There are benefits to using Alipay instead of WeChat within China. Some restaurants and shops have special discounts for Alipay users, but most importantly, you'll also need an Alipay account to shop from the website of wonders that is Taobao. Either way, it's a good idea to have both WeChat Pay and Alipay downloaded on your mobile device to be ready for any situation.

Xe Currency Converter

Price Free; 1.99USD (approx 13RMB) for the Pro version (iOS and Android)

What is it?A currency converter

Use it forKnowing real-time conversions

Best featureAbility to customise a list of up to 10 currencies

LanguageEnglish, Chinese and nine more

Previously featured as国华人寿 'App of the Week' on iTunes, the BBC and CNN, Xe Currency Converter allows users to both c簸箕,App it up: Essential downloads to simplify Beijing living,马尔代夫旅行onvert and monitor live currency rates all in one place. Other notable features include access to historical charts for any currency pair and the ability to use the app offline.

Baidu Maps (百度地图)

PriceFree (iOS and Android)

What is it?China's Google Maps

Use it forFinding the best way from point 男大当婚A to point B

Best featureStreet view and bus tracking

LanguageChinese簸箕,App it up: Essential downloads to simplify Beijing living,马尔代夫旅行

Baidu Maps has it all, from voice control to remote car-wash requests to up-to-date traffic conditions. The interface is only available in Chinese but certain points of interest can all be searched for in English. Click here for a guide to Baidu Maps.


PriceFree (iOS and Android)

What is it?An integrated dictionary, document reader and flashcard system

Use it for Finding the exact definition of any given Chinese word or phrase with 125,000 entries, including classical Chinese texts

Best featureHandwriting recognition system for when you don’t know the pinyin of a given Chinese word

LanguageEnglish only

Pleco is unique in t人物hat it is a free, extensive, online English-Chinese dictionary. It's also a lifesaver for when you see a particular Chinese character but don't know its pronunciation or meaning – simply draw the character on your keyboard and find out. Unlike other translation and dictionary apps, Pleco gives all the meanings of each character, allowing you to properly understand its meaning in context. The paid app includes a camera function, fullscreen handwriting, handwriting and tone drills, diagrams and customisable dictionaries.

T簸箕,App it up: Essential downloads to simplify Beijing living,马尔代夫旅行aobao簸箕,App it up: Essential downloads to simplify Beijing living,马尔代夫旅行 (淘宝)

PriceFree (iOS and Android)

What is it?China’s largest online marketplace

Use it forOnline shopping

Best featureThe ability to buy anything and everything you could ever think of – and more

Language Chinese only

If it exists, it will be on Taobao. Full stop. You can buy virtually anything – from pimped out rain gear to a snack bowl with phone grooves – with just one tap. However, as Taobao is owned by Alibaba, you'll need to have an Alipay account to buy all the weird and wonderful (and practical) things Taobao has to offer.

Jingdong Daojia (京东到家)

PriceFree (iOS and Android)

What is it?A grocery delivery app

Use it forShopping at your convenience

Best featureFlash deals and one-hour delivery

LanguageChinese only

Use Jingdong Daojia for everyday essentials, from medicine to convenience store goods to fresh fruit. Delivery from international supermarket April Gourmet is also available. Unlike regular Jingdong delivery (which generally takes about a day), Daojia can deliver within one to two hours, making it ideal the next time you have a culinary emergency – just expect to pay more for the privilege.

Yitongxing (易通行)

PriceFree (iOS and Android)

What is it?The Beijing Subway's official mobile payment app

Use it forPaying for the Beijing subway using your phone

Best featureImmediate top-up, general convenience of not needing a metro card


As the Beijing Subway's official mobile payment app, you can use Yitongxing to access the metro simply by scanning a QR code on your phone – no metro card needed. To use Yitongxing, simply link the app directly to your payment method of choice – either your bank account (ICBC only, unfortunately), Alipay, JD Pay or WeChat Pay – and Yitongxing will automatically deduct each trip's subway fare from your account.

Metro Beijing Subway by Metroman (地铁通)

PriceFree (iOS and Android)

What is it?A metro route planner

Use it forPlanning your subway journey, including where to change lines

Best featureAccurate route, time and fare information you can use offline

LanguageEnglish, Chinese and nine more

With an average of 10.55 million trips a day, Beijing Subway is the world’s busiest metro system. Unsurprisingly then, it's pretty useful to know the most efficient route from point A to point B. This app will not only show you all your route options but will also tell you how much any given journey costs and how long it will take, as well as giving you a full map of the Beijing metro. Furthermore, you can use this handy dandy app whenever you travel throughout the region, as it offers you the choice of 33 Mainland cities plus Hong Kong, Taipei and Kaohsiung.

DiDi (滴滴出行)

PriceFree (iOS and Android)

What is it?China's version of Uber

Use it forHailing a cab

Best featureTaxi proximity map and feature to book ahead

LanguageEnglish and Chinese

With coverage in roughly 300 cities and over 500,000 taxis around China, you'll almost never be stranded anywhere with DiDi. The app has taxi options fit for all budgets, from normal taxis to DiDi premier vehicles. If you're fluent in Chinese taxi talk, the Chinese version is built into WeChat. If you're not, you绕柱击球 can download the DiDi app and use the English version. English-language typers can also message their driver in English and the app will translate the message for the driver, and vice versa.

Shouqi Yueche (首汽约车)

PriceFree (iOS and Android) (Note: Type 'ShouYue' into app stores)

What is it? A chauffeur service (also available in Shanghai, Guangzhou, Hangzhou and Shenzhen)

Use it for Booking a car service

Best featureTaxi proximity map and feature to book ahead

LanguageEnglish and Chinese

Shouqi Yuechue is DiDi’s high-brow cousin offering the same convenience for chauffeur services. The in-app messaging automatically translates between English and Chinese making it easy to communicate with the driver.

Mobike (摩拜单车)

PriceFree (iOS and Android)

What is it?A bike sharing app

Use it forBiking anytime, anywhere

Best featureOnly 1RMB (for the first 15 minutes)

LanguageEnglish, Chinese and 12 more

As the world's largest mobile bike operator, it's hard to find a street corner in Beijing that doesn't have an orange bike parked on the curb. Pricing starts at 1RMB for the first 15 minutes, with an additional 0.5RMB for every subsequent 15 minutes. Though you may sacrifice your comfort if you rent an old bike without an adjustable seat (new ones do have this feature), you're still getting around at a bargain price. In order to register, you'll need to take a photo of yourself holding your passport and wait 24 hours for蜀山 confirmation before rolling around town on your new orange wheels. And unlike when Mobike first started, new users no longer need to make a deposit to use the service.

Ofo (小黄车)

PriceFree (iOS and Android)

What is it?Bike sharing app

Use it for Biking anytime, anywhere

Best featureAdjustable seats

LanguageEnglish, Chinese and 13 more

Founded in 2014, Ofo is Beijing’s OG bike sharing app. Despite financial strains (and near bankruptcy) at the end of 2018, Ofo continues to be a bike share option for Beijingers. That said, sign up at your own risk, as rece王雨nt reports have users struggling to have their deposits (199RMB) refunded. In comparison to Mobike, each Ofo trip also starts at 3RMB (a not inconsiderable mark-up). New users must also register with their passport upon signing up.


PriceFree (iOS and Android)

What is it? Hotel, train and flight app

Use it forBooking your whole trip in one place

Best featureSpecial offers and discounts

LanguageEnglish, Chinese and 18 more

As Ctrip's English-language app, Trip.com allows you to book hotels, trains and flights all in one place. There are also special offers and deals on all of the above you often can't get anywhere else. Beware that when you f童安格irst reserve train tickets, they are not confirmed until you receive a confirmation email. If the ticket issuing fails, you'll receive a full refund.

Sherpa's Food Delivery Service

PriceFree (iOS and Android)

What is it?A food delivery app

Use it forMidnight snacks and predominantly Western eats

Best featureCan deliver wine and beer

LanguageEnglish and Chinese

Slightly more expensive than its Chinese counterparts, Sherpa’s is one of China’s only English-speaking food delivery services. If you're craving Western food, we recommend using this app since it generally has all the Western options you could want. Beware that there is a 15RMB delivery fee for the first 3km and an additional 5RMB charged for every kilometre after that, but for those of you ordering between 2-5.30pm Mon-Fri, the delivery fee is waived within the 20RMB delivery zone (as long as you spend more than 80RMB). There is also a driver tracking map within the app and if there are problems with your order, a nice English-speaking lady is likely to call you.

Meituan Waimai (美团外卖)

Price Free (iOS and Android)

What is it?A food delivery service… and more

Use it forDaily meals and ergfriendrands

Best featureHongbaos and discounts

LanguageChinese only

Meituan is everyone’s go-to food service. You can also deliver your groceries, fruit and medicine. The app shows which shops have different deal女孩写真s, making it easy to save money. Also, since the given shop sets the delivery fee, which is often free, it means that Meituan is a consistently cheap option. Like Sher油pa's, a driver tracking map is also available.


Price Free (iOS and Android)

What is it?Another brilliant delivery service that makes life easier

Use it for Daily meals and errands

Best featureHongbaos and discounts

Language Chinese only

Essentially, the biggest difference between Meituan and Eleme is that each app offers slightly different stores and discounts. Since Eleme is also a part of the Alibaba Group, you'll need Alipay to use this service.

Dazhong Dianping (群众点评)

PriceFree (iOS and Android)

What is it? China's version of Yelp

Use it for Finding highly rated restaurants and shops near you

Best featureReviews and photos that show diners what to expect

LanguageChinese only

If Yelp and TripAdvisor had a love child with Groupon, it would be Dazhong Dianping. Use Dianping to receive discounts from certain shops and to read reviews from customers (or just look at the number of stars the place has got). Besides restaurants and shops, there are offers for practically anything you can think of in your community (from hotels to cinemas to museums) on the app.

Google Translate

Price Free (iOS and Android)

What is it?A translation app

Use it forQuick and easy translation on the go

Best大白鲨游戏下载 featureDocument translation

LanguageEnglish, Chinese and 58 more

Yes, Google Translate is accessible in China. It includes text, speech and instant camera translation. Also, pinyin is handily featured underneath the Chinese text.


PriceFree (iOS and Android)

What is it?A translation and dictionary app

Use it forOvercoming language barriers

Best featureVoice-to-voice, website and offline translation

LanguageEnglish, Chinese and 22 more

Can’t understand your taxi driver’s erhua? We’ve all been there. iTranslate includes written and voice-to-voice translation, transliteration and dictionary functions to make life a little easier. The app can also translate text through the camera function.

Baidu Translate (百度翻译)

Price Free (iOS and Android)

What is it?A translation app

Use it 簸箕,App it up: Essential downloads to simplify Beijing living,马尔代夫旅行forQuick and easy translation on the go

Best featureAccurate Chinese translation

LanguageChinese only

Baidu Translate offers similar services to that of iTranslate and Google Translate, but a noticeably more accurate translation when translating from English to Chinese. We’re not saying it’s a perfect translation, but it 杰索拉often sounds more authentic than its non-Chinese counterparts. Be aware though that Baidu Translate will not translate politically sensitive terms.


Price10USD (approx 67RMB) per month for the Basic Plan; 20USD (approx 134RMB) per month for the Plus plan (iOS and Android)

What is it?Chinese language learning through a video translation app

Use it forLearning Chinese in a fun way

Best featureFilm trailers, music videos, news and inspiring talks catered to your Ch暴君的逃婚皇后inese level

LanguageEnglish and three more

FluentU will not quiz you to death with dull flashcards and grammar drills. Instead, it will teach you Chinese through pop culture. All videos are subtitled and translated. You can press on every word for a full definition in context.


PriceFree for basic version; 8.99USD per month (approx 60RMB) for the Pro version (iOS and Android)

What is it?A vocabulary-focused language app

Use it forPersonalised language courses with video game-like features

Best featureUse your own pictures to learn words in Chinese

LanguageEnglish, Chinese and 20 more

As the 2016 iPad App of the Year in Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden and the 2017 Google Play Awards’ Best App, Memrise is not just any language-learning app. Linguists and developers worked together to make language courses that adapt to each learning style. The app has clear graphics to make sure your tones are spot on and mnemonic cues to solidify new vocabulary and grammar. Also, there is a feature to challenge your friends to make language learning feel like a video game.


Price14.99USD (approx 101 RMB) per month (iOS and Android)

What is it? A Chinese character-learning app

Use it for Mastering Chinese characters (hanzi)

Best featureStroke order instruction

LanguageEnglish only

Skritter hones in on one of the most challenging parts of learning Chinese: writing characters. Though lea赵海燕rning how to write Chinese characters can be daunting without the guidance of a teacher, Skritter has made it approachable. The app breaks down the basics of hanzi, from stroke order to placement of characters on a page, in a clear and accurate way. It even tells users where they went wrong.

Air Visual

PriceFree; 1,480RMB for the Pro version (iOS and Android)

What is it?An in-depth, real-time pollution app

Use it forKnowing the current air quality

Best featureInteractive map with 10,000+ locations around the world

LanguageEnglish, Chinese and 15 more

Be prepared for air pollution with official readings from the US Embassy and consulates around China. The app also tells users the key pollutants and what precautions to take to stay healthy. Compare the pollution of different cities in China to around the world. With the Pro q版动漫人物version, you can even compare the outside pollution levels to those inside your home.


PriceFree (iOS and Android)

What is it?China-specific air quality app covering 26 cities

Use it for Knowing the AQI and sharing information with other users

Best featureImage sharing

LanguageEnglish only

Airpocalypse makes air quality fun... if you can imagine that. The app has a function for users to upload their own photos and add a witty caption to celebrate the good days and get through the bad ones. It also uses the US Embassy's official reading, meaning the AQI is as accurate as possible (for those within the boundaries of its reach).

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