7 Free Apps That Will Save Your Next Family Road Trip

A family road trip can be as much about the journey as the destination—but as a passenger, the journey isn't always all that fun.

When your parents are in charge of the trip, chances are that they've already finalized the itinerary, meaning directions, major activities and hotel stay are already accounted for. It's your job to come along for the ride and try not to go stir crazy.

Download these seven free apps on your phone and you'll not only crush boredom but increase your odds for saving the day.


Random pitstops can be more than they appear. With HISTORY Here, you can enable your location and the app to mark notable spots on your map. Not only will it help you encounter interesting spots, but it'll give you a little context around any giant thermometers or balls of yarn you stumble across on your journey. If you find yourself in a notable historical location, it can even offer guided tours around the area.



When your family is driving to a new destination, deciding where to make a pitstop can be a huge gamble. iExit takes all the guesswork out of picking your exit by showing you what's available at each one. The app is also integrated with GasBuddy and Yelp, so you can figure out where to fill up on the cheapest gas and where to find the tastiest local food or the best cup of coffee. Your parents will thank you.

Girl with head out window of car on road trip

(via Shutterstock)


TV Food Maps

It's always fun visiting a spot you've seen on TV. This app makes it easy to find local spots featured on The Food Network so you can eat in the same spots as Anthony Bourdain or Guy Fieri and recreate their most famous meals.



Everyone has to take bathroom breaks, and finding the perfect place to go is especially critical when you're in the middle of nowhere. This app helps you locate public restrooms and rates their cleanliness so you never have to worry about gross roadside stalls.



If you're headed on an hours-long trip, you're going to need some entertainment for the road. The app itself is free, and if you've never used it before, the first month's subscription is, too. Just load up an audiobook of your favorite Harry Potter novel and the time will fly by as you're sonically teleported to Hogwarts, or whatever other book you'd love to hear—they have more than 180,000 to choose from.

Girl happily listening to music on headphones in back seat of car

(via Shutterstock)



This may seem super obvious, but every road trip needs an awesome playlist, and Spotify is the perfect app for providing one. If you have their premium subscription you can also do offline streaming, which can be a lifesaver in the middle of the desert or at the top of a windy mountain road where your data fails.


Relax Melodies

For those really long road trips, managing to catch a little sleep in the car is a must. Dozing off in the backseat on a bumpy drive can be tough, but it's easier with white noise to drown out the outside world. Relax Melodies allows you to mix and match different white noise sounds and melodies to create your own personal sleep music so you can be out in no time.

Two girls asleep in back seat of car

(via Shutterstock)


Don't have any trips planned yet? Click HERE to find out the city you should visit this summer based on your zodiac sign.