Whether I was traveling for work or vacation, too often I found myself sitting idle on an airplane, bus, train, or car. As a Muslim, I knew every second of my life is important and it bothered me that I was “wasting” hours of my time mindlessly staring out the window.
However, over the many years and hours of traveling, I began to experiment with new activities that I could do with the restrictions I had. I learned that sitting idle, although a necessity when in transit can be transformed into moments of self-improvement and reward if the Muslim traveler can find ways to be productive.
Below are five productivity apps and tips for Muslim traveler that will boost productivity when traveling.
1. myDuaa for Dua and Dhikr
The Messenger of Allah said,
“There are three prayers that are not rejected: the prayer of a father for his child, the prayer of the fasting person and the prayer of the traveler.”
Narrated by al-Bayhaqi (May Allah be pleased with him).
Busy yourself in Dua is my number one tip for the Muslim traveler. Our beloved Prophet told us that the Dua of a traveler is answered without a doubt. That is not something you and I can take lightly.
Sometimes we have a misconception that Dua can only be made during an obligatory prayer, however, that is far from the truth. Dua can be made at any time and in any place. It can be made while you’re up in the air, sitting on a bus, or even sailing on the ocean.
Why not then use your precious time when you are traveling to make Dua for that which your heart desires? Use this time to make Dua for yourself, your family, and your life in the hereafter. See a nice car that you want out of the window? Why not make a sincere Dua at that moment? Don’t wish for it, make it happen by asking Allah for it.
There are many apps available but my personal favorite app for authentic Duas is MyDuaa. It is available for iOS and Android. The Duas are sorted into categories, are searchable, and presented in a clean user interface. Each Dua also comes with English translation, transliteration as well as professionally recorded audio.
2. Audible for Audiobooks and Podcasts
I’ve learned that one of the best ways of boosting my productivity while traveling is to gain knowledge along the way. Reading a book isn’t always easy especially if you’re someone like me and are not an avid reader. For me personally, audiobooks have been a complete game changer and my productivity during travel has skyrocketed.
There are many ways to get your hands on audiobooks but the best service to use is Audible. For a small monthly fee, Audible offers one book a month from a selection of almost half a million, professionally narrated books. You’ll be surprised at how beneficial audiobooks are and the compounding impact it will have in your life as you move on from book to book.
An excellent and free alternative to audiobooks is podcasts. There is an endless number of topics that you can subscribe to, like religion, self-improvement, business, and many more.
3. Quran Pro Muslim for Reading and Listening to the Quran
Reading the Quran is a great act of worship, but reading isn’t always feasible if you are standing on a bus or walking. However, listening to the Quran is also a great act of worship and an excellent way to keep yourself productive when traveling.
If you’re looking for a way to increase your productivity and also get immense rewards along the way, then this is as good as it gets. There are many Quran apps available, both for iOS and Android.
My personal favorite is Quran Pro Muslim because it has a very extensive library of Quran reciters. You can buy the premium version and get access to high-quality audio files that you can download onto your device for offline use.
4. Google Keep for Organization
Organization is an essential part of productivity. When our mind is cluttered with thoughts and tasks, it is difficult to focus. We waste our brain cells storing information in our heads instead of writing them down and referring to them later.
This is where Google Keep comes in.
Google Keep is a free note-taking application that is available for iOS and Android. It is a productivity tool that allows you to take quick notes, attach images to them and create to-do lists.
Here are 5 tips for the Muslim traveler on how to utilize Google Keep.
Declutter your mind by writing down important notes.
Attach pictures and audio notes directly into notes for future reference.
Create daily to do’s, grocery lists and other checklists as you travel.
Write notes on your computer and access them on your phone on the go.
Collaborate with others, by sharing notes and travel plans.
5. Whatsapp for Connecting with Family and Friends
The Messenger of Allah said,
“It is not permissible for a Muslim to have estranged relations with his brother beyond three nights, the one turning one way and the other turning the other way when they meet; the better of the two is one who is the first to give a greeting.”
Reported by Abu Ayyub Ansari (May Allah be pleased with him).
The last app and tip for the Muslim traveler have to do with proactively keeping up ties of kinship. We all have individuals in our lives who we love dearly but never get the time to talk to.
I found myself in a similar situation until I started to connect with family, friends, and those who I may have stopped talking with for whatever reason while I traveled.
The best thing is, I didn’t need an internet connection to do this. Using apps like WhatsApp, I would go through my contact list, write, and send messages. Once my phone had an internet connection, the messages automatically send, and I was able to continue the conversation.
It is an act of worship to keep up the ties of kinship and not completely breaking relations with your brothers and sisters in Islam. The internet, mobile phones, and social media have made it incredibly easy.