The car is packed up. Far too many snacks are on hand. You’re ready to embark on an epic road trip. But wait! There are a handful of apps designed specifically to make that trip even better. Download them before you hit the road, and enjoy the ride.
Ever wanted to see the world’s largest ball of twine? How about a moose made out of chocolate? The Roadside America app will ensure that you don’t miss a single strange attraction en route to your destination. They’ve divided the U.S. and Canada into seven regions, which can per purchased for $2.99 each. Or you can upgrade to the entire database of oddities for $5.99 more, to leave no quirky museum or bizarre statue unturned.
Hey, everybody needs to go. And when you do, the last thing you want is to be frantically searching for a place to do it. Gone are the days of having to buy an order of French fries to use the facilities at the nearest McDonald’s. This free app will show you where to find public restrooms, tells you which ones are handicapped accessible, and even allows you to rate the ‘room for future users. Although let’s be honest, we all want an excuse to get the fries sometimes!
How frustrating is it to spot a place you want to stop, just as you are passing the exit? This $0.99 app will rid you of that problem once and for all. iExit tracks your location and gives you a list of things you can find at each upcoming freeway off-ramp. You can even look ahead to future exits to see what they have in store. Keep it close while you’re on the highway and never miss a good stop again.
Gas prices got you down? Install Gas Buddy. This app searches your area for the cheapest gas prices and best of all, it’s free. You can search specifically for the type of gas you use, sort by price or distance, view cash and credit prices, and explore a map to see which stations are on your way. Once you give it a try, you’ll never fill up without it.
If you aren’t already using Waze, you are wasting unnecessary hours of your life sitting in traffic. And those hours are arguably the most valuable while you’re on vacation. This community-based navigation app draws data from its users to give you real-time traffic info and direct you on the quickest route to your destination. So if you’re short on time and hoping to get the most out of your road trip, make sure to check this free app for traffic jams before hopping on the highway.
This $9.99 app is targeted at RV travelers, with a focus on campgrounds and motorhome facilities across the country. But any road-tripper can benefit from the range of useful information it offers. Allstays highlights national and state parks, truck and rest stops, service stations, road grades, and tent campsites wherever you’re going. They also pinpoint big-box stores such as Costco, Walmart, REI, and Big 5 Sporting Goods to make stocking up for your adventure a breeze.
Nothing spoils a highly anticipated arrival like not being able to find a parking spot. ParkMe is a handy free app that provides detailed parking information in the city of your choice. Enter the time of day you’ll be there, how long you plan to stay, and even select from options like a covered lot or one that accepts credit cards, and see your options and prices on an interactive map. It’s a heck of a lot easier than driving around an unfamiliar place hunting for that coveted spot.
You probably already have Spotify. But you may have never felt the need to upgrade to premium. For an extended drive, you might want to reconsider. $9.99 per month gives you the opportunity to download your favorite tunes in advance and listen offline, which is where you could often find yourself on the road. If your journey is going to take you off the beaten path, make sure you have enough songs to get you through the parts with no cell service! The lack of commercials is just an added bonus.
Any other apps you swear by on road trips? Share with us in the comments.