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Camino de Santiago Guide - App for Phone

cmk033

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
February (2019)
As I am preparing for the trip (the first), I am hearing this guide on the title is highly recommended.
Would this app require a mobile network? I am not planning on buying a SIM to use phone while I am there. Can this app be used with only WiFi availability? Thanks in advance for your reply.
 

davebugg

"When I Have Your Wounded" - Dustoff Motto
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances...
Sept. 2017: SJPdP to Burgos
Sept./Oct. 2018: SJPdP to Santiago de Compostela
Hi, cmk....

Camino de Santiago is a generic description for any Camino that ends in Santiago de Compostela, so it will help to know which Camino you plan to walk. If that app is the one by Kelly, it doesn't seem to have a very high rating. If you are planing on walking the Camino Frances, then the app "Wisely + the Camino Frances might be a better choice.
 

Vacajoe

Traded in my work boots for hiking ones
Camino(s) past & future
2019 Biarritz-Pamplona-Lourdes
2018 Aragon/Frances/Finis
2018 Operation Sabre
2018 Marin Ramble
Buen Camino app word great without cell service!
 

lt56ny

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
2013-Frances SJP-Finisterre, 2015 Camino Le Puy-Santiago, 2017 Portugues Lisbon-Santiago 2018 Norte
Haven’t used that app. I have all the Wisely/Wise Pilgrim apps. Bought the bundle pretty cheaply. Works offline and has good info. My daughter also got me the Buen Camino app for the Norte. You learn no app is complete when it came to Albergues and even suggested alternative routes which the Norte has in abundance.
I don’t make reservations ahead of time but it is nice to have a phone I can use especially when you walk off busy walking season. I assume there will always be something open on the CF. Have not walked it in 4 years. But when I was on the Norte there weee many places closed after Oct 15th. It helped not walking 30k days. Walked a little less some days instead of a lot more. I also doubt you will get very lost very much on the CF unless you are in a blizzard.
 

t2andreo

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
C/F: 2013, 2014
C/M: 2016
C/P: 2015, 2017
C/I: 2018
Voluntario: 2014 to 2018
As I am preparing for the trip (the first), I am hearing this guide on the title is highly recommended.
Would this app require a mobile network? I am not planning on buying a SIM to use phone while I am there. Can this app be used with only WiFi availability? Thanks in advance for your reply.
As Davebugg suggests, the Wise Pilgrim and Wisely Apps for your smartphone will work very well. They both have offline maps that you can download over Wi-Fi. They are available for both Android and Apple phones. The cost is nil.

I know the guide / app author. His main business is keeping these apps current. So they tend to be the most accurate. His distances are based on GPS... He uses a bicycle with a GPS receiver on it to verify. Som you can take WIse distances to the bank...

But, and this is the key thing, while the Wise Apps do not need live data coverage, they DO require an active cellular signal. These apps replaced real-time GPS type positioning, with using the cellular positioning 'pinging' from a smartphone to position you, as a dot or arrow, on the downloaded map. To do that, they need an active cellphone pinging the towers to triangular your precise location, including on the map.

This saved a HUGE amount of battery and data use, over the first edition / releases. Now they just piggyback on the cellular locator that regularly pings towers saying "...here I am, here I am..." There is no data use. But, if you use the app to link to a reservation site or another webpage, data or WI-Fi would be needed.

It is the only way to measure and mark your progress on the maps. If you were really determined to be cell-silent, I suppose you could just download the maps and use them in the same way as a paper map. IMHO, a paper map or guidebook would be better at this point, certainly more convenient. The map on the smartphone is SO tiny...

But, there is a primary reason why having even a basic voice only SIM is a wise idea. In any emergency at all, you can call 112. This is the European, and Iberian equivalent to 911 in the US. You can ask for help in English. Most all countries and especially Spain, have folks on duty who speak some English. Simply ask "Ayuda en ingles, por favor?" (ah-jhzoo-da EN enghl-ese, por favor?)

You can pick up a Vodaphone or Orange prepaid SIM at the airport after you land, or in a large train station. These SIMs are ubiquitous and not costly, less than €30 for two weeks to a month.

They offer insanely cheap voice calls, even back to North America. Frankly it is embarrassing how little they pay for voice, when my t-Mobile plan wants USD $3.00 per minute, from Spain to the US. I use the t-Mobile 55+ Plan because it gives me free data and texting worldwide. This is important to me. The tradeoff is that voice is stupid expensive.

TIP: put your phone in Airplane Mode and use Wi-Fi calling... Of course, you need Wi-Fi or portable data to do this...OR, make Wi-Fi calls to home and family from places with free Wi-Fi. I do both when I am at Santiago as a volunteer for a month each summer.

The prepaid SIMS typically have a nominal data allotment, usually something in the ballpark of 100 MB - not much. These phones all have apps that allow you to top off the SIM and your account while you are in Spain. In some cases, you can buy a coded ticket at supermarkets or convenience stores that allow to dial a free number and input the code to top off without using the internet.

I advise having an active SIM, it is insurance and peace of mind.

Hope this helps.
 

Walkandwalk

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Past: Camino Frances 2016, 2018
I used Buen Camino app both times. And the map worked without an internet connection, so if you get lost or something you can look into that map and see are you going the right direction. Also if you are thinking to use public wifi, I suggest using a Nordvpn app because it is not safe at all to connect to random wifi.
 

cmk033

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
February (2019)
I have downloaded the app on my android phone in US. It does not seem to work. I am not sure if this will change when I arrive at the trail. It displays the map of where I am. I pick the route to "Camino Francis" and different map is displayed then system automatically displays back to my location map. Any help would appreciated as I am leaving on Sunday.
 

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