Top Tips For Using Skype On Your Travels
Whilst the postcard may not exactly be dead, it is certainly a form of communication that’s seen as a little dated in this digital age. Friends and family may appreciate a hand-written note that shows off that all-important stamp, but to stay in touch with your nearest and dearest, it’s much more likely you’ll turn to your trusty mobile device to make contact.
That’s where communication apps like Skype come in. A god-send for the frequent traveller and with over 74 million users worldwide, Skype allows users to place calls from anywhere in the world where they can secure a WiFi connection. Not only can travellers speak face-to-face with loved ones back home, they can communicate via text chat or even perform a good, old-fashioned phone call without racking up an astronomical phone bill. Whether you want to say goodnight to the kids, send a friend birthday wishes or catch up with your mum, Skype has become an essential tool for those that are often on the road.
If you’re getting to grips with this nifty app, here are a few top tips to help you manage Skype like a pro…
1. Make yourself heard.
There’s nothing worse than struggling to hear or see the other party during a Skype call; it can leave you frustrated and wondering if it’s worth the effort. Before you make your next video call, click on the Tools menu and tweak the Audio and Video settings under Options. Brighten up the image, adjust the volume and get ready to be heard and seen, loud and clear.
2. Streamline the calling process.
You can set up Skype to make life a whole lot easier and streamline the process of placing a call to anyone in your contacts list. Simply head to the main page and open Tools, followed by Options. Here, click on General Settings and check the box that states ‘When I double-click on a contact start a call’. Now, you can connect with just the quick-fire double click of a button.
3. Discover the secret emoticons.
Who doesn’t love an emoticon to really punctuate their text chat? Sometimes a picture really is worth a thousand words, and Skype have developed a list of hidden emoticons to add to your instant message conversations. The full list of emoticons is updated frequently with fun, new images to liven up your text and get your message across.
4. Try out the Skyscanner group chat travel bot.
This useful tool was launched last year by flight comparison site Skyscanner and Skype to make planning a trip with a group that little bit easier. The Skyscanner bot can be added to a Skype group chat as if it were another member, allowing any user involved in the chat to question the bot regarding flight times, routes and prices. Making it much easier to plan a trip as a team.
5. Pre-record your video messages.
Sometimes, awkward time differences can make it difficult to catch up with those back home in real time. You’re ready to chat over a glass of wine in the evening whilst they are dragging themselves out of bed to get ready for work, or you’re struggling to keep your eyes open whilst they are full of beans on their lunch break. Skype’s pre-recording feature allows users to let their loved ones know they are thinking of them without waiting for the times and stars to align. Right-click on the contact you wish to send a pre-recorded message to and choose Send Video Message to record your clip. Then just hit Record when you’re ready to capture your message.
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