Familiarize Yourself With a New City With AroundMe

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If you like to travel, you probably often find yourself in unfamiliar places.

AroundMe is an app that makes it easy to search your location for popular spots like gas stations, hotels, and restaurants.  And you can find less searched-for areas, like hospitals, pharmacies, and even parking.

So when you’re away getting Big Travel with Small Money, you can find what you’re looking for with just a couple of taps!

AroundMe App Review
Familiarize Yourself With Your Surroundings With AroundMe

I’ll give you my AroundMe app review!  And share if it’s worth a download.

AroundMe App Review

Link:   AroundMe

Link:   AroundMe App (Android)

Link:   AroundMe App (iOS)

AroundMe is an app that essentially makes Google Maps easier to use.  Its text is big and colorful.  And it has large, helpful icons.

1.   Categories

When you open the app, the home screen gives you a list of categories, like coffee shops, movie theaters, and supermarkets.  You’ll also see a search icon and menu icon, both at the top right of the screen.

AroundMe App Review
The Home Screen Will Give You Categories of Commonly Searched Destinations

If you click on restaurants, it will show you the restaurants closest to you.

AroundMe App Review
Find the Closest Restaurants in Seconds

If you click on the menu at the top right of the page, you’ll see more viewing options for your search results.  You can keep the standard list, or view the results in 3 different kinds of maps.

AroundMe App Review
Choose to View Your Search Results in Map Form for a More Visual Experience

I prefer map results over the list.  That’s because I can see what’s near me, as well as what’s along my route.

AroundMe App Review
AroundMe Will Use Your Phone’s Native Maps Application to Show What’s Near You

2.   Home Screen Menu

Click the 3 vertical dots on the top right of the home screen to go to the Settingsmenu.  Here you can change your unit of measurement, opt-in for daily weather forecasts, and upgrade to the ad-free version of the app.

AroundMe App Review
Not a Lot of Goodies in the Settings Menu
The free version works just as well as the paid version.  But the ads in the free version are really intrusive, and can take up 25% of the display on some pages!

You can change your location from the home screen menu, if you want to view another city you’ll soon visit.

3.   Search Option

For folks who know what they want and don’t want to browse categories, the home screen menu also has a search icon at the top right of the screen.  Just type what you’re looking for.  Here’s what I got when I enter “wine”:

AroundMe App Review
The Search Results Show Everything Related to Wine, in Order of Distance From My Location

4.   Location Information

When you tap a merchant or location, you’ll see a map, as well as a “directions” icon.  Press it to launch your phone’s native maps app with guidance.

AroundMe App Review
Get a Quick Rundown of the Location

There is also a “star” icon, which I thought would save the location as a favorite inside the app.  But when I clicked it, it just opened contacts screen, and suggested I save the phone number as a contact.  I don’t like that!

AroundMe App Review
The Star Icon Won’t Save the Location’s Info Inside the App, But It WILL Save the Phone Number in Your Contacts…

If you scroll down on the merchant info page, you’ll see hours of operation, menus, and reviews from other folks from Yelp and Foursquare (not all locations have these features).

AroundMe App Review
Check Out Photos, Reviews, and More With a Tap

What’s the Verdict?

AroundMe is a clean and easy-to-use app.  But it doesn’t bring anything new to the table.  It’s basically Apple Maps or Google Maps with a simpler user interface.

While I liked how the app displayed pictures and menus of restaurants, and had synopses and showtimes of local movies, it’s nothing Google Maps doesn’t already do.  If I perform a voice command search for the restaurants near me through Google Assistant, I’ll get access to the same information AroundMe provides.

AroundMe App Review
Google Maps Can Do Everything AroundMe Does. And Google’s Voice Search Does It Faster

Also, because the app is integrated with Yelp (and TripAdvisor, to an extent), I wish the search results reflected the ranking of the hotel, coffee shop, bar, etc. in the list of results.  That would make it easier to scan and find the best options, instead of clicking on results individually.

I tried different searches.  And while AroundMe offered more results, Google’s results were more relevant.  For example, when I searched hospitals, AroundMe displayed more locations, but many were things like rehabilitation clinics and oncology specialists.  Probably not the kind of results someone is looking for if they’re in a new city!

Bottom Line

The AroundMe app helps folks find what’s near them quickly and effortlessly.  It has big, clear text, and is so easy, anyone can use it.  You can find movie showtimes, restaurant menus, and coffee shop reviews within a few seconds.

That said, there are other apps that can do this as well and sometimes better.  I compared my Google Assistant results against AroundMe, and the difference was too slim for me to keep the app.

What app do you use to help you explore a new area?

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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