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Unleash Your Wanderlust: 12 Essential Apps for Summer Travel

by Sara Qualls

Are wanderlust and sunscreen on your list as your two summer essentials? Whether you’re hitting the road or organizing your dream summer escape, I’ve curated a collection of 12 apps for summer travel planning that will sprinkle some extra magic on your plans. Get ready to embark on thrilling adventures and create memories that will last a lifetime with these apps at your fingertips!

1. Road Trippers

Image of Roadtripper home page

Buckle up, roll down the windows, and get ready for your next road trip. Do you love road trips but find yourself dreading planning all the nitty-gritty details? Here’s the perfect solution for you: Road Trippers! This app will become your ultimate road trip companion, taking care of all the tedious planning so you can focus on the fun stuff. From mapping out the best routes to uncovering hidden gems along the way, Road Trippers has your back.

2. Whatshalfway

Image of What'sHalfway.com, a great app for summer travel planning

Searching for the perfect spot to meet friends halfway for lunch? Planning a long summer trip to catch up with family? Fret not. The ultimate solution has arrived for you. Whatshalfway will pinpoint the exact halfway point based on time or distance and select an ideal meetup spot. Don’t waste any more time searching aimlessly – head over to Whatshalfway.com and make your meetups or road trip stops an absolute breeze!

3. Texas Historical Marker Guide

Traveling in Texas? Don’t miss out on the incredible Texas Historical Marker Guide app. For the mere price of $2.99, this app is a treasure trove of information on over 16,000 markers scattered throughout the state. What’s more, it works seamlessly even when you’re offline, ensuring you never miss a fascinating piece of history. And here’s the cherry on top: it helps you track your progress, making your exploration even more rewarding. 

4. Gas Buddy

Stay one step ahead of your fuel needs with Gas Buddy. This nifty app assures you’re always in the know about the closest gas stations and the best fuel prices around. Plus, it goes the extra mile by offering handy tools to help you budget for gas, enhance your gas mileage, and even keep track of your fuel consumption. 

5. Roadside America

Image of Roadside America's home page. It's an app that can assist with summer travel plans.

Discover the quirkiest roadside attractions across the U.S. with Roadside America! This app is perfect for summer travel planning. It’s your key to offbeat and kitschy treasures along your road trip. It’s a collection of the most unique and photo-worthy spots. Explore museums, murals, tours, and even quirky restaurants. Roadside America is available for $2.99 on iOS only.

6. iExit 

Image of iExit app for summer travel planning

Don’t let the whirlwind of exit signs at 70 mph confuse your road trip pit stops. Say goodbye to backseat drivers with the iExit Interstate Exit Guide app. This handy tool tells you exactly what’s ahead on your route, from snacks and drive-thru lattes to public restrooms. It covers it all – food, lodging, fuel, and even hospitals. Best part? The app is free to download on both iOS and Android.  It’s a great addition to your apps for summer travel!

7. Recreation.gov

Image of recreation.gov homepage

Are you a fan of national parks and public lands? This app puts the power of exploration at your fingertips. Whether you’re looking to book a weekend getaway or plan a cross-country road trip, Recreation.gov is all you need. Discover and reserve campsites with ease. Get ready to get outdoors.

8. AllTrails

Love hiking, biking, or simply going for a walk? Look no further than AllTrails, the ultimate app to help you uncover incredible trails based on your location. With AllTrails, you can access reviews, save trails you’re eager to explore, and even keep a record of your completed hikes. The choice is yours: share your adventures publicly or keep them private.

9. TripTik by AAA

Plan your perfect summer road trip with TripTik by AAA. Enter your starting and ending points, and decide how many stops you want to make. It will customize the entire trip, including breaks. The app is free to use, even without AAA membership. Hit the road with confidence. This app for summer travel planning is a lifesaver.

10. Signal

Image of Signal homepage

If you’re traveling abroad this summer like my co-worker friends, Charlene and Emily, download this one first. Say goodbye to international fees with Signal because all Signal calling and messaging is done over the internet and encrypted. Plus, they’re a nonprofit, just like TCEA. 

11. Wi-Fi Map

Stay connected while traveling with Wi-Fi Map. Discover free WiFi hotspots with an interactive map and offline mode. When using the offline mode, you’ll see a list of all the hotspots with passwords in your chosen area. You can also contribute to the app by sharing new hotspots in the places you visit. Only available for iOS.

12. Wiman

Image of Wiman App for summer travel WIFI homepage

Don’t worry, Android users. I didn’t forget about you. Wiman is your go-to app for all the fantastic features of Wi-Fi Map. Discover free WiFi hotspots, enjoy an interactive map, and access the offline mode with ease. You can even join the community and share locations, too.

I hope these apps make your summer travel planning easy and breezy. If all else fails, keep calm, and summer on! 

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