We are told not to make phone calls or text while we are driving and for good reason. However, that doesn’t mean you need to completely stop using your phone while you drive.
A wide variety of great apps are available to make navigating easier.
Turn on Text No More as soon as you enter your car to keep yourself from texting while driving, an act that is illegal in many places. When someone texts you while the app is in use, they will receive a response that you are driving and cannot reply. Every time a text is blocked, both you and the sender will get a coupon that can be used in the area you are driving. Coupons are generally some great deals, such as free coffees or half off your order at a local restaurant.
Don’t forget to fill up the tank before you start your journey. GasBuddy is a free app that lets you know where the cheapest gas is in your area. It will base its answers on your GPS location or you can search by zip code. The app is based on entries from other drivers and awards participants with points and other awards.
Hitchhiking isn’t just for old movies anymore. Avego allows you to share rides with people in your area, saving the environment and possibly a few bucks along the way. Avego will alert you when someone else using the app and needing ride is in your area, where they need to go and how much they are willing to pay. You decide whether or not to pick them up. The app has several safety features as well. Both the driver and the rider can rate each other and the driver must enter a PIN number to verify the rider. Every person that uses the app must be registered with Avego. The app will also track location of the ride via GPS.
Wouldn’t it be great to have free speed trap database while you’re on the go? Trapster thought so, too. The app will let you know where cameras and live speed traps are located along your route, each with a validity rating based on how many users have reported the trap. Traps are displayed as icons on your GPS map. The app has more than 14 million users updating it to speed traps as well as road hazards such as broken down vehicles and construction. A voice alert will let you know when you are coming up on a trap or other road issue.
In the event that you get pulled over for speeding anyway, My Max Speed 2.0 may help you in traffic court if you wish to dispute your ticket. It can even track your teenager’s driving habits. Using the acceleration gauge in the phone, the app will log your speed and your location every few seconds and then send it to a spreadsheet. When your teenager comes home, you can view a history of their stops. You can even choose to have a message sent to you if the app leaves a defined area.
Once you reach your destination, you’ll be met with the hassle of parking. Winner of an Appy Award in 2012, ParkMe finds the cheapest and closest parking to your location. It then informs you about the type of parking (metered, free or a lot) and gives you pertinent information such as the hours, rates and how full the lot is. You can even use the app in advance to determine how much cash to bring for parking.