Sunday, January 17, 2016

Road Trip Apps!

I was listening to my friend, Shortyknits, on GeoGearheads this week (GGH 210), and she mentioned Furkot. She's working on several challenges at once (Illinois DeLorme, Illinois counties, and Illinois Virtuals) and had a really successful adventure in the new year. She and ScottBerks made a major dent in finding qualifiers while criss-crossing across the state. A wiz at trip planning, she said she used

FURKOT - Miss the turns on your terms! Use real dates, find interesting places, book hotels with ease

Furkot is a free trip-planning website (that works just like an app on your mobile device). You can plug in multiple stops and the planner will route the most efficient route from one destination to the next. You can pick dates and even travel times - travel times will accommodate sightseeing stops but keep you on track from missing check-in times or sundown, if needed.

From their site: You can even plan meal stops and add gas stations to your itinerary. Not to mention biking paths, museums, monuments, climbing routes, national parks, scenic views — add as many as you want. Furkot will keep you on track. You just need to show up.

A website that's also mobile-friendly and works like an app
When I posted this online, another friend, Yellowjeeperman, said he's been using Roadtrippers for years.

ROADTRIPPERS - Maps built for travelers.

YJM said, "If you like finding things on road trips, awesome restaurants, cool spots to stops, highly recommended places, movie locations, it's the best app."  I have to admit I enjoyed clicking on the Attractions & Culture and Points of Interest features. Looking at my local area, it was pretty thorough. 

Besides the standard Food and Accommodations, I can also see my family enjoying the Guides: Roads & Rides, Camping, RV'ing, and Destination Strange. Destination Strange wonderfully reminds me of my favorite website: Have you been? Talk about fascinating places and a fabulous website, too!

Both a web site and a free app
Now, YJM is a very helpful sort. He also mentioned another favorite travel app: Sit or Squat by Charmin!

SIT OR SQUAT - Need a bathroom on the go?

This is available via a fee app or online.  At first I poo-poo'd his suggestion (pun intended) until I remembered that we're going to Washington DC and Central Park this year. Talk about tough places to find a public loo! Good suggestion, Brad!

Both a mobile website and a free app
Still and all, I can't end this post without mention my buddy AstroEricJ's favorite, WAZE

WAZE - Outsmarting Traffic Together

I wrote about WAZE after our epic journey from Michigan > Indiana > Illinois > Wisconsin > Minnesota > Iowa > Illinois > Indiana > Home. This is social media for traffic. As you travel along your route (and it will route for you if you plug in a destination), you will see real-time traffic issues like accidents, construction, traffic slowness and police presence as reported by other Wazers. Waze is smart enough to navigate you around these hazards in a fun, interactive way.

Available as a free app only

Now, this is definitely not all-inclusive, but this should make for some interesting experimentation this summer on the road to DC and NY. Especially if we acquire a mobile wi-fi like AstroEricJ - yes, wi-fi on a geo-adventure (drool).


  1. Thanks for such great tips! I'd definitely need to try Furkot out! I would also add my favorite navigation app Spyglass to this list. It supports different maps, depending on my current needs: google maps, apple maps, open street map and open cycle map. It saves an opened map area in a cache so you can use it later when offline. Besides, it has many useful features for those people that are not very good at orienting. The app shows your current position on the map, can save waypoints and locations, for example, your car or your hotel location. You can find it here

    1. Thank you for including the link - always on the lookout for new apps specially when personally recommended. Please let me know if you find any other favorites so I can add them to a new blog post.

      Thank you, Aliona!

  2. I must check these out! They sound perfect for multiple destination birding trips. I am such a dinosaur, I hope I can figure them out. I can't figure out how to make the directions on my ipone talk to me. Grump.

    1. Ah, sounds like an excuse for a phonecall, Lauri. Remember? I train for a living! LOL.


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