Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Celebrity Offers “Cruise Lingo”

It isn’t often that I can get “an app for that” when offered a useful tool for cell phone and tablet users. I am a loyal BlackBerry user with a new Q10 and the latest applications are seldom compatible with even my brand-new (and fabulous!) phone. However, I do have an iPod Touch and, thankfully, this new app introduced by Celebrity Cruises can be used on it.

Celebrity recognizes that English is the universal language and is the most widely spoken language on board their vessels; however, to feel truly immersed in the culture of a far-flung destination, there’s nothing quite as authentic as speaking like the locals (or at least trying to). So,the line—with vacations visiting all seven continents and a focus on enhancing the destination experience for its guests—has made it easy for passengers to speak local languages with its new, industry-first app, “Cruise Lingo.” An interactive language and culture guide, and a customized version of the award-winning mobile app from TripLingo, Cruise Lingo allows travelers easy access to authentic local phrases and relevant information to enhance their destination experience.

Even a newcomer to the app world like me can download and use Cruise Lingo. With my iPod Touch I connected to my home WiFi and found it by searching the App Store. It downloaded quickly and I began learning phrases in no time with a touch of the screen. By simply selecting a phrase—such as, “How much does it cost?”—the translated language of the local destination appears on-screen. An interactive feature offers multiple versions of each phrase, including formal, casual, and slang options that you can listen to and mimic. Or, if you are more comfortable, just play the phrase to the person you are attempting to communicate with—in my experience from growing up in Germany, you will often find the locals in foreign lands will then respond in English.

Other free features of Cruise Lingo include voice-to-voice translation and a limited “flashcard” learning system, which are available even when you are not online. Also included in the free version of the app are 80 standard phrases in 11 languages; 56 cruise-specific phrases; 20 free uses of the voice translator; access to 2,000 dictionary words translated into all 11 languages, and the culture crash course that contains information including general etiquette, safety information, doing business, country information, travel tips, dining guide, music, and local pop culture. Some features are only accessible if you have an Internet connection and upgrade through an in-app purchase which unlocks more content, including a full-featured library of the 11 languages.

The free, new Cruise Lingo app can be downloaded onto Android and iOS smartphones and tablets from or, as I discovered, from the App Store on your device.

Images Courtesy Celebrity Cruises

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