5 Great IPhone Apps for Dining Out

In this age of incredibly powerful mobile technology, much of the ways people used to solve problems are now obsolete. Students don’t go to the library when they need to research a paper anymore. Instead they just power up their laptops and scan through Google. If you’re looking for a business to fill a need, it’s probably been years since you flipped open the Yellow Pages. And if you’re looking for a good place to eat during a nice night out on the town, all you’ll need is a charged battery and your trusty iPhone. Thanks to the iOS app store, there are literally hundreds of thousands of resources to help you avoid a bad meal and zero in on the best food in close vicinity. To help you through the process, check out any of these five great iPhone apps for dining out.

The first app on this list probably needs no introduction, and that’s the incredibly popular Yelp. This is the go to app for people searching for just about anything, but it’s valuable for all of your food searches. Yelp allows you to shop by city, zip code or even within your exact location. And it’s great for restaurants because it is driven by personal recommendation. Check out the reviews of any restaurant you search for, and you’ll find a star rating for easy reference and highly detailed notes from a wide range of previous customers. Best of all, they’ll often mention specific dishes that you must try, helping you quickly navigate a menu to find the best choices.

Another great app for dining out is called OpenTable. This is what you’ll use once you’ve got some recommendations in mind and really just need to lock down that reservation on short notice. With OpenTable you’ll be able to do just that, booking a reservation at basically any restaurant in America. You’ll instantly know if they have room to accommodate your party, without spending time being put on hold by a restaurant’s busy staff. And the more you use OpenTable, the more rewards points you’ll earn towards gift cards and other goodies.

If you’re really looking for a professional recommendation, download the Zagat Restaurants app. You’re probably familiar with Zagat, which has been known as one of the definitive ratings resources for food aficionados. Zagat has a familiar rating system that will address everything from food to ambiance. And once you download the app, you’ll receive access to a full year of the latest reviews Zagat publishes, without having to purchase the physical book.

If you’re traveling for business or pleasure, check out the free app Urbanspoon. This is fantastic if you don’t really know what you’re looking for, or if you’re open to suggestions as long as they end up bringing you somewhere delicious. Urbanspoon plugs right into your phone’s GPS, giving you a list of restaurants right in your current neighborhood. You can browse the list by price or type of cuisine, but part of the fun of this app is choosing randomly. Just by shaking your phone you’ll receive a new suggestion, allowing you to roll the dice on a unique recommendation.

Finally, check out another free app called Foodspotting. This one works in a similar manner as Urbanspoon, giving you recommendations when you’re not quite familiar with the area. However, the approach is quite different with Foodspotting. Instead of providing lists of recommendations, Foodspotting delivers photos of dishes available at restaurants in the neighborhood that were snapped by other users. The quality of each image depends on the individual, but you’ll certainly be able to get a gauge of what you’re in for. It won’t offer upĀ emeals.com suggestions, but you will receive advice from expert foodies and chefs as well.

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