So a little while ago an email popped up in our inbox from Santam and apart from a momentary stab of guilt, horribly reminding me that neither I nor Lauren (and our bun in the oven) have any kind of insurance. I was like “hey? What’s up with this?
In actual fact the Mail wasn’t from Santam, “Santam”was the subject line. Anyway, i’m just gabbing now, so let’s move on.
The mail explained to us that Santam had just created an app. My first thoughts were “Yay, another company with an app. I’ll go back to bed thanks” and then my eyes were pulled to a single sentence.
“I think this app would appeal to travellers”
“Why?” I wondered, perhaps they are trying to sell travel insurance? Then another sentence caught my attention.
“Santam’s new app is called Be Safe. It allows you to select friends and family to virtually accompany you on your journey from start to end, no matter where you are.”
BOOM. I was wide awake.
This is actually something that’s extremely useful and not just for traveller’s like Lauren and I, but also to the general public, where crazy things can happen to you these days on a simple shopping run.
Santam has actually created two videos explaining the App’s usefulness and potential. They’re actually extremely well made (not cheesy at all) and all credit to the team behind them.
If you watched the above video’s I hardly need to explain to you how the app works and how awesome it is but for the sake of thoroughness I will detail my experience below.
My Experience using Santam’s Be-Safe App:
So as some of you guys already know, Lauren and I live in rural Malaysia (until September this year) and while I work from home, Lauren’s drive out to work is pretty far.
Everyday she has to drive about 35 / 40km (one way) from where we live. Thankfully there isn’t any traffic out here and crime is super low but the bad drivers here make up for both of those. Seriously, drivers out here are horrendous and seem bent on suicide.
As you can imagine this is pretty worrisome for me. It’s gotten better over the last year but in the beginning I was very worried. Also, because we are in rural Malaysia, most of the schools she works at aren’t even listed on Google Maps.
Add to this, we are travel bloggers and spend a heap of time travelling – we try to travel together all the time but sometimes it’s just not possible. When we are far apart and in different countries, it’s very comforting to know that we’ll be able to check up on one another.
Maybe now you can begin to imagine how exciting Santam’s new app is beginning to look.
So what’s it like to use?
Refreshingly, it’s pretty easy.
When you are about to leave all you need to do is open the app, click “Be Safe,” fill out your journey details, add a “guardian.” Then click “Start Journey” and you are ready to roll.
This is literally how easy it is, but I’ll add these steps with more depth again in the next section.
How Santam’s Be-Safe App Works:
First things first – head over to https://www.santam.co.za/santamapp/ and then click on either the Play Store or the App Store links (It’s available for Android and iOS.) This is very simple as it’s just the same as installing any other app.
You’ll then need to create a login account – it’s quick and probably won’t take you more than a minute but it would be cool if you could just sign in with your Google or Facebook account – simply because I hate living in a world where we have 379 different passwords. On the other hand – I’m not sure how secure (or wise) linking your social media profiles to a location-safety app would be.
After you login click the menu button (top left for Android users) > Be Safe and you’ll be taken to a screen where you can add a guardian. This is essential. A “Guardian” is simply a person that you allow access to see where you are on your journey / road trip / hike etc.
Important – your guardians cannot always track you (helpful when gift shopping) – they can only track you on the specific journeys that you say they can. It’s not a “Big Brother” scenario at all.
i.e. if I am going cycling on our treacherous roads and I want Lauren to be able to know where I am – I “begin a journey” and select her as my guardian and only now can she see where I am, until I end my journey.
You simply add the names and phone numbers of the people you would like as your guardians. For me, it’s just Lauren.
Let’s say you’re heading out for the day on a hike or better yet, let’s just use the example of Lauren driving to school.
All she has to do is open the app, click “Be Safe” and select “Begin a journey.”
She add’s the details of her journey –
- Selects the starting point on the map.
- Her “Transport Mode” (walking, running, cycling, driving)
- Duration (How long she expects to be gone for)
- Add’s a guardian
- Selects the end point on the map.
- Clicks “done”
- A new screen comes up with summary of her journey and she clicks the “Start Journey”
That’s it. The guardian you selected is automatically notified and you can head off with a little more assurance that at least one other person knows where you are and whether you are safe.
Negatives: I can’t think of too many negatives – yes, the app also contains stuff promoting Santam’s other products (not pop up adverts mind you, just information) and perhaps the sign up process could be a fraction quicker, but at the end of the day this is a free service they are providing.
So, in summary, our honest opinion is that this is an awesome service and we are happy to stand behind any company out there making our lives safer and ultimately more carefree.
Well done Santam and thank you for this tool!