Road Trip AppsMay 23rd, 2012 | written by Brad Geppert
According to the American Automobile Association, an estimated 30.7 million Americans will make a road trip this Memorial Day weekend.Â And for many, that road trip will involve many hours in the car watching rural America whiz by.
Of course your smartphone will be at your side, so why not use it to make your trip a little less Griswold and a little more Cannonball Run?Â Of course, don’t use your smartphone while driving.
TomTom for iPhone – $36.99 (Apple iOS 4.0 or later)
“Are we there yet?”
This app brings the software of TomTom International’s GPS devices to your iPhone, for much less than a full-blown TomTom GPS. It means one less device to carry with you, plus you’ll receive the latest map data with every update (additional charge for updates). But if you’re considering purchasing a GPS and you have an iPhone, this is worth trying. TomTom has a free app for Android with some of this functionality, it isn’t a GPS replacement.
Mommy! I need to go to the bathroom
Presented by Charmin, this app shows you a map of nearby public restrooms, as well as ratings provided by fellow users. You can post your own reviews with pictures (just be sure to flush first), and even bookmark your favorite lavatories. A very handy app for those with young children, IBS, a weak bladder or a pulse.
$4.39 a gallon! I’m not paying that!
The GasBuddy Organization released this free app into the marketplace several years ago with the tagline “never overpay for gas again” and it has really caught on. I think we are all overpaying now, but this app really can help you save money. Just launch the app, and within a few taps you have a list (or map) of nearby gas stations with their prices. The community is responsible for uploading price changes, and the app shows how recently the price was updated. Find your lowest price, see it on the map, and use your GPS function to direct you there. See something cheaper? Be somebody else’s “gas buddy” and update the price.
“OMG! Alaska! I win!!”
Remember when your parents drove you and your little brother to Disneyland? You’d play the license plate game for at least an hour or two, until you both realized that no one was keeping score, and you swore you had already called Vermont when your brother tried to claim it for his own. Well if you only had this app to help you track your progress, your parents might still be married.
Designed by DigiKnow, this simple app lets you calculate scores, tracking which plates have been already seen, and which are still available. You can take a break to annoy your sister for a while, then get right back into the game without losing progress. The app doesn’t require network or Wi-Fi access so you won’t miss out when you see that elusive Hawaii plate in the remote salt flats of Nevada.
Safe Travels and enjoy the holiday!