To the casual observer, the technological revolution has not been kind to the most iconic of travel journeys – the road trip. The world moves ever closer towards comfort, ease, and leisure, however, these valiant vacationers still drive right out to take their travels in no other hands but their own – and the app store has rushed to keep up with their needs. For apps that enhance your latest road trip – or smoothen out some of its many speedbumps (yes, this figure of speech was inevitable) – we’ve compiled a list that skips past the ever-vital Google Maps, Google Translate and, of course, Google Search.
Nothing quite dampens one’s travelling plans quite like an unexpected rainy day. A huge boon for early planners, WeatherPro offers hourly forecasts for up to 2 weeks ahead, and provides all meteorological information one could hope for, including temperature, rainfall amounts and their probabilities, relative humidity and even air pressure. For simplicity’s sake, it charts the forecast on a graph for you. Neither hail, nor sleet, nor rain, nor snow shall ever catch you unawares again.
Everyone knows what really makes a good road trip memorable – and that’s the little restaurant you’ve found with the friendly waiters and the food that changes your life. Finding those restaurants and filtering them out from the hundreds of merely average food places can be a challenge – if you were on your own. With the Foodspotting app, you’re part of a large online community of people all united in one cause – finding the world’s most delicious food restaurants and making sure everyone knows about them. The app includes visual representations of your food, so be warned – try not to browse if you’re too far away from the restaurant to satisfy that sudden onrush of cravings you’re going to be feeling.
3) Noted Places
Not everyone keeps a travel journal, but those who do will attest to how great it is to have a record of the places they’ve visited, and the experiences they’ve had. Noted keeps a track of the places you’ve been to, related pictures, and your own little notes. It also keeps stock of places you’ve yet to go to, and organizes your various notes into categories like ‘Eat’ or ‘Stay.’ Best of all, it lets you share these notes for family and friends planning or thinking of travelling to those very same places. Stories grow, note by note
4) Trip Advisor
You were probably expecting this entry to show up, and if you weren’t, it’s here because Trip Advisor is one of the best apps for travellers out there. A site that runs on user-generated content in the form of reviews, it’s a handy database for hotels, restaurants, tourists attractions and anything else a wandering roadtripper might need, all in a format customized for your mobile device. A great app for those still in the planning stages of their trip – or the more impulsive ones who’ve spotted an interesting hotel along the way and want to know its worth.
5) Wi-Fi Finder
Useful as these apps are, they can be somewhat moot if there’s not internet access at the ready. Wi-Fi Finder’s got your back, with maps and directions to the nearest source of internet availability. It lets you download maps beforehand, of course, for you to access when your phone’s connectivity’s down.
So get your bags packed, your vehicle’s tank filled up, and last but not least – your phone charged. With these apps ready on hand, the open road beckons. Your road trip is ready to begin.