Know before you go: Take the guesswork out of barhopping

WASHINGTON — Barhopping can be fun, but you can also waste a lot of time and money searching for a good party.

Smartphone apps can help cut down on the frustration by cutting down on the guesswork of a night on the town.

The mobile payment service Dash has a new feature called Venue Vibes, which claims to help you know how busy a bar and restaurant will be before you get there.

According to Engadget, the system talks with a bar or restaurant’s point of sale system and compares the number of open tabs with its maximum capacity.

Depending on your preferences for the evening, a user can choose from Lively, where a bar or restaurant are super-crowded and rowdy; Active; Relaxed or Quiet, suitable for a date night that involves talking.

So far, Venue Vibes is only available in New York and Chicago, but the company says more cities will soon be included.

Another app, SceneTap, claims that with the tap of a button a user can see how many people are at a place, the male-to-female ratio and the average age of people inside the club.

SceneTap uses facial detection technology to get a sense of a club’s vibe. The developer says the software is anonymous, unlike facial recognition software, which attempts to determine a person’s identity.

The Red Cup app’s description makes it pretty clear what the app does: “Want the most drunk for your buck right now in Tuscaloosa, Auburn, Huntsville, AL or Orlando, FL?”

The app provides information on drink specials, entertainment, and taxi service for a safe ride home.

Others prefer more human recommendations for where a fun night be had, using Yelp, where users can describe clubs’ ambience.

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neal augenstein | scenetap | venue vibes | yelp

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