10 Apps Every RVer Should Have on Their Smartphone
Smartphones rank as one of the greatest inventions of all time, packing an unbelievable amount of features and functionality in a tiny form factor. These technological wonders can slip into a pocket and help us stay connected, informed, and entertained wherever we go. And thanks to a seemingly endless supply of new apps, they only continue to become more valuable over time.
Our mobile devices are an especially great tool for RVers, allowing us to navigate to the campsite, providing essential weather alerts, and keeping us in touch with friends and family back home. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg in terms of what these gadgets can do. With the right apps, they become even more useful, helping us to travel safer and smarter.
With that in mind, these are our picks for the apps that every RVers should have on their smartphone:
Campspot is one of the best online options for finding and booking dispersed and RV campgrounds, combining a powerful search engine with an extensive database of locations, along with the ability to instantly book a campsite. The website’s companion app puts all of those features into the palm of your hand, making it easy to find and reserve campsites while traveling. Each entry provides a list of amenities for the location, images of what the RV park looks like, directions to the destination, and more. Download for iOS or Android.
Recreation.gov Mobile App
This is the official app for finding and reserving campsites at national parks, US Forest Service lands, and BLM locations across the US. This handy program makes it easy to discover all of the options available near your current location or along future travel routes. The campground descriptions provide information on the available amenities and whether or not the site is RV-friendly. You can even purchase and schedule tickets to visit national parks, monuments, battlefields, and other attractions. Download for iOS or Android.
Good Sam Camping App
You don’t have to be a Good Sam member to benefit from using the company’s official app. The software provides information on more than 12,000 RV parks and resorts across the country, along with lists of nearby attractions and vehicle service centers. You’ll find navigational information included in the app, along with discounts for reserving a campsite, all for free and with no login required. Download for iOS or Android.
If you prefer boondocking over staying at a traditional campground, iOverlander is the app for you. It has a global database of thousands of remote campsites that can provide all the solitude and serenity that overlanders crave. As with similar apps, this one uses the GPS chip on your device to determine your location and then suggests off-grid camping spots located nearby. Most of those locations have been submitted by other travelers who provide all of the information you need, including listing nearby gas stations, restaurants, and water, gas, and propane filling stations. Download for iOS and Android.
RV Life GPS Navigation
Both Google Maps and Apple Maps are excellent for basic navigation; they don’t offer RV-specific features. On the other hand, RV Life does offer a clean, easy-to-use interface to help you reach your destination. Best of all, it allows RV owners to input the size of their motorhome or trailer and then uses that information to create routes that avoid low-hanging overpasses, narrow tunnels, or other obstacles that could be an issue. Download for iOS or Android.
True to its name, this app helps travelers plan road trips across North America. It can help them select a route, find places to eat, and tell them where the next gas station or rest stop can be found. It will also suggest places to go and things to see along the way and has a database of campsites to stay at each night. As with the RV Life GPS app, Roadtrippers allows users to input the size of their vehicle and adjusts the route and other suggestions accordingly. It is available for iOS and Android.
Let’s face it: gas prices are expensive, and saving money at the pump is always a good thing. GasBuddy is an app that helps you do just that by sharing the current price of fuel at all nearby gas stations. This allows you to comparison shop for the best value, potentially saving hundreds of dollars on a long-distance RV trip. Download GasBuddy for iOS or Android.
RV Dump Stations/RV Dump Sites
These are actually two different apps, with RV Dump Stations running on iOS and RV Dump Sites available for Android devices. Both are designed to help RVers find nearby dump stations to empty their black tanks. This can be challenging when visiting a new area, but these apps will help you find nearby options and navigate you to the site.
Autio is a unique app that can help you learn more about the fantastic places you visit—while keeping you entertained—on your travels. Using your phone’s built-in GPS capabilities, the app knows your current location and supplies a list of audio stories to tell you about those places. There are more than 10,000 options to choose from nationwide, with narrators like Kevin Costner, Phil Jackson, and John Lithgow sharing some truly fascinating tales. The app does cost $36 per year, although Good Sam members can access it for just $19.99. New users can also listen to five stories for free. At the time of publication, Autio is iOS only, but an Android version is coming soon. Watch the company’s website for updates.
If you enjoy hiking, mountain biking, or trail running, AllTrails is a must-have app for your mobile device. The app offers a massive database of more than 400,000 trails from around the globe, making it easy to find one that meets your needs in terms of length, difficulty, and ease of access. Detailed maps help you find your way along each route, and your phone’s GPS tracks your progress. And when you’ve finished, you can share a review or tips of the trail you just walked, helping future hikers, bikers, and runners to safely enjoy their time outdoors, too. Download for iOS and Android.
Add any or all of these apps to enhance your next RV journey.
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