5 Travel Apps That Should Ride Shotgun on your Phone

A Girls Guide To Cars | 5 Travel Apps That Should Ride Shotgun On Your Phone - Road Trip App Featured Image

Heading Out for a Road Trip this Summer? Take along these apps.

Thousands of Americans are hitting the road this summer. Whether you’re loading up the family truckster (thank you Chevy Chase for that little phrase) for an epic family vacation, hitting the road with your honey, or reliving the antics of Thelma and Louise, we have the apps to make your trip a little easier. From finding the best route to locating the cheapest gas to finding all those quirky roadside attractions—these apps will earn your smartphone a ride in the front seat. There’s even an app to help you earn some extra cash while you’re making your way across the country.

The New 2018 Chevrolet Equinox

Vintage Esso meets the all new 2018 Chevrolet Equinox Photo: Terri Marshall

1. No one really wants to pay for gas, GasBuddy makes it less painful

Put your phone to work finding cheaper gas along the way with GasBuddy. Based on your location, GasBuddy tracks down the stations with the lowest prices nearby. As a GasBuddy user you can report and update station prices and be rewarded with points. Those points make you eligible for prizes, like free gas. And we all know there’s no price better than free. Thanks Buddy!

2. For Those of You Who Don’t Buy Gas, Plugshare Helps You Find a Place to Recharge

If you’ve done the environmentally friendly thing and purchased an electric vehicle, congratulations. No more gas stations for you. But you’re still going to need a hook up (for your car that is) and Plugshare can help you out.

Plugshare lets you look up and review nearby charging stations for your electric car. The app features a map database of more than 90,000 public charging stations. It also offers compatibility notes through PlugScore which provide station ratings, availability details and an option for rating and reviewing the stations. And you can help other electric car owners out by adding new stations not yet in the map.

Electric Vehicles

There is a growing network of charging stations Photo: Sara LaFountain

3. With Waze, the world is as it should be—people helping people

Sure you have navigation in your vehicle…and on your smartphone. But Waze takes navigation a step further. With Waze you’re notified of traffic conditions along your route by the drivers who are ahead of you on the road. Waze is the world’s largest community-based traffic and navigation app. What that means is that drivers are helping other drivers. By sharing real-time traffic and road information, reporting potential hazards and even letting you know when the police are nearby, Waze makes the drive easier for everyone.

It’s the way the world should be: people helping people. By working together with all of the other road-trippers out there, everyone is a winner. See what is possible when we all work together toward a common goal?

Read our tips for planning a successful road trip here.

Pet Travels

Izzy is ready to hit the road. Photo: Vanessa Orr

4. Want to Turn Your Road Trip into a Profitable Venture? Roadie’s here for you

Roadie is a new app born from a problem solving perspective. Founder, Marc Gorlin needed a couple boxes of custom tiles from a warehouse a few hours away to finish a bathroom renovation. But, there was no practical (or economical) way to get them right away. He started to think, there’s always someone going somewhere, surely someone who was already headed in that direction would be willing to transport a couple boxes of tile for him. A light bulb went off and Roadie was born.

Roadie is essentially a delivery service based on the concept of neighbors helping neighbors. It connects people with stuff to send with drivers heading in the right direction. Heading to Texas in an SUV with extra cargo space? You can deliver someone’s boxes, furniture or even a pet along the route and make some serious cash to supplement your road trip fund.

Roadie is quickly becoming the go-to delivery solution for large, awkward or delicate items. So load Fido up, drop him off at his new home and collect some extra gas money. It’s a win-win.

Road trips need snacks, read about our favorites here.

Roadside Attractions A Girls Guide To Cars

The Corn Palace, yes, really. Photo: Terri Marshall

5. Roadtrippers Will Help You Find the World’s Largest Ketchup Bottle…Or Ball of String

I’m a sucker for quirky roadside attractions. Perhaps it’s a habit born from visits to places like the Corn Palace in Mitchell, South Dakota…I’ve been 3 times. With Roadtrippers, I’ll be able to track down all the tackiness I can handle. But it’s not all about giant Dalmatian fire hydrants, Roadtrippers is a useful resource for road trip planning. Use it to find national parks, points of interest, hotels and good eats along the way.

You can do some pre-trip planning from your laptop at home saving locations and stops into a trip plan. Then sync that information with your smartphone for easy access while you’re on the road. Yay, CarHenge…here I come.

A Girls Guide To Cars | 5 Travel Apps That Should Ride Shotgun On Your Phone - Sbc Road Trip Apps

Do you have a favorite road trip app? Tell us about it in the comment section. Happy trails!



Terri Marshall grew up road-tripping around the country. Her love for the open road remains strong today. A travel... More about Terri Marshall