Chances are you’re reading this right now on some sort of smart device. In fact, upwards of 75% of Americans own a smartphone. We all love our devices and especially our apps. They help us get through the day, tell us where we’re going, and keep us entertained throughout our daily lives. But what about the apps for travelers? We’ll share what we think are the 11 must-have apps for every traveler, based on the ones we’ve used for the last 13 weeks of travel.
Getting from place to place
Whether you’re trying to find a camping spot, need help figuring out which trail to take, or need some suggestions on things to do in the local area, there’s an app for it. We’ve used each of these constantly while we’ve been on the road.
AllTrails: For hikers of all levels, this app is a fantastic resource. One of the best functions we use regularly is the ability to download trail maps to save for later. It also offers a tracking feature to make sure you stay on the trail. If you accidentally wander away from it, the app buzzes you and lets you know. Add in tons of photos, accurate trail details, and helpful, up-to-date reviews, and AllTrails works as the perfect companion for the hiking traveler.
The Dyrt: We love this app when we’re trying to figure out where we’ll stay for the night. The fact that we didn’t necessarily plan to be traveling the US this year leads us to winging a good bit. The Dyrt helps tent campers, RVers, and backpackers find great places to stay. From free, dispersed campsites to paid camping and even some backyards, this app offers detailed info you won’t find most places. It offers costs, reviews, road conditions, and amenity information so you understand the site before you arrive.
Roadtrippers: This one is actually new to us. A fellow traveler mentioned it, and we were blown away when we checked it out. Not only does it have plenty of trails, but it also lists local attractions, camping, photo-op destinations, food/beverage options, and even a list of general things to do. It runs the possibility of becoming our go-to app for any new place. The biggest downside to it is since it’s so unknown, the review side of things can be a little lacking. Nothing more users can’t fix!
Getting your read on
Whether you’re into fiction, an autobiography, or anything in between, it doesn’t make sense to carry a stack of books with you on a long trip. Luckily, our world is becoming more and more digital every day. Amazon Prime has been a lifesaver when it comes to finding some good reading. We know others who are into Audible, but until they work out their charging structure, we don’t resort to that one often. However, there are two reading apps we use religiously.
Books and audiobook subscriptions are expensive. If you love to read but are unfamiliar with the Overdrive app, we highly recommend looking into it. The app connects to your local library card and gives you the option to rent e-books and audiobooks from their online library. You can even choose to read most e-books by connecting your Kindle app. Just like your brick and mortar library, you rent books in 7-day, 14-day, or 21-day increments. You can also put a hold on books that have already been rented. It’s a great way to get through your summer reading list without spending a fortune.
Likewise, Kindle is a great companion for all you Amazon Primers out there (you know you went for the prime shipping…) Prime offers tons of free e-books and audiobooks to download and then read in the Kindle app. Also, for those who can’t decide, they’re starting to offer companion audio for the e-books, which is awesome for increasing your reading speed.
Even with all the amazing hikes and killer things to see, your downtime is important, but you can only listen to the same albums or read for so long. We talked a touch about this in our article, “ 5 Podcasts to Make Your Downtime Less Boring “. Podcasts have become our go-to move when we drive. But there’s something about being able to watch a Tv show or movie at the end of a long day. Good news, the big guys you all use to stream have you covered.
One of the difficulties of long-term travel is losing your exercise routine. Whether you don’t have access to gym equipment or you’re confused with just what to do, there are a TON of apps that offer exercise videos. One of our favorite (and completely free!) exercise apps is FitOn. They offer a wide range of exercise classes from yoga, HIIT, to even boxing. You can download the courses for offline use AND you can even browse the selection via your favorite instructor.
To maintain a healthy mind and body, we like to add in daily meditation. Science is finally backing up the benefits of adding mindfulness to your daily routine. There’s a whole slew of new apps popping up to help with this, but we like to use the app, Headspace, is not a free app, but they do offer a free trial period.
Youtube is another great alternative for free meditation help, but make sure to vet the videos you choose. Sam Harris also recently launched Waking Up, For those who can’t afford it, he provides an option for a free account. His app is getting a ton of attention and helping people of all levels begin meditation or improve their practice.
Travel is easier than ever
Smartphones aren’t going anywhere, and they were created with something other than mindlessly scrolling through social media. Hopefully, these suggestions will help you on your next adventure. Also, if there is anything we missed that you use, let us know. We’re always on the lookout for ways to make our life easier on the road. Happy Travels.
Originally published at https://gofindyourhappy.net on September 15, 2020.
This post was previously published on Medium.com.
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