I wrote this piece awhile back for my J. Dawg Journeys blog on the FMCA web site. It was hugely popular with the members of the FMCA. Thought I’d share it here for the general public. These are some smartphone apps I use that really come in handy while traveling in my RV.
I’ve got lots of apps on my phone for news, music, photos, podcasts, notes, banking, etc. But, these have evolved into the ones I use most frequently while traveling. These are all Android apps that most likely have iPhone versions. Thought I share what they are so others could also enjoy them.
A great app for leveling your RV. It has a 360 degree bubble level or a spirit level. No internet access needed. Just start the app and lay your phone on your RV floor or counter top or on its edge to use the spirit level. It has over 10 million downloads. I use it every time I park the RV. No need to install those little bumble levels inside the coach.
I use Google Drive as my cloud storage. I’ve got a couple of accounts – one for my travel and blog pictures and one for my private stuff. On my private account, I’ve got folders for all my important documents. Things like my insurance policies, vehicle title, vehicle registration, copies of all credit cards, copies of ID’s. I scanned all this stuff and uploaded it to my private folders on Drive. If I need one of these while traveling, it’s right on my phone.
I use Evernote for my to do lists, shopping lists, and recipes. When I’m on the road, I use it to build my grocery list. I’ve got my favorite recipes on it. I have an RV pack up list. I even make notes for new blog articles on it. No more scrap paper lists or small note books. Everything I need to remember goes in Evernote.
Flame On (Fireplaces and Campfires FREE)
Want to have a campfire and stare into the flames? Don’t have any wood, fires are prohibitied, or don’t like the smoke? This app is for you. The app will let you select a campfire or fireplace scene and play it on your smartphone or tablet. I like the relaxing campfire and log cabin fireplace videos. Its a bit fool hardy but good for a laugh when you’re out for an evening or stuck in the RV on a boring night.
A very popular app for finding fuel. I have mine set up for diesel. It comes in handy when trying to find a fuel station or the best price. It has 10 million users.
A great weather app. Open the app and it instantly shows you the current weather radar for your location and any emergency alerts. No ads. Great for checking if rain or bad weather is in the area. It has 5 million users.
I use my in dash GPS to see my heading while I’m driving. But I’m an old Boy Scout and use this app when I’m parked to find out which way is sunset or sunrise. Or which way that storm is coming. Its also helpful went on a hike. Its a free app and has over 10 million users
This is a very cool smartphone app for sending postcards from your smartphone. The app lets you use a picture from your smartphone and turn it into a postcard. It also lets you add a 500 word message to the back of the postcard. Once you create the card, the app “sends it” to Touchnote and they print it and mail it via regular old USPS snail mail. The app is free. With the app you have to create an account at Touchnote and purchase credits for mailing your post cards. The post card cost $1.99 and that includes the postage. You can buy credits in packages and that lowers the unit cost down from $1.99. Sending post cards is old school but its nice to be able to create a custom one and send it with just a few clicks. It has 1 million users.
The best traffic app! Its a real time crowd sourced traffic app. Once you start the app, Waze tracks your speed and location. Users report slow downs, accidents, speed traps, construction slowdowns. When ever I come to a traffic slow down, I open the app and can see a map with the traffic speed and any reported incidents that other users are reporting. It has 50 million users.
Where Am I?
This is a GPS based app that will show you the local address, GPS coordinates, and temperature of where you are. Very handy when traveling. Its great for emergency or 911 calls to report your location.
In addition to these apps, I also have ones for finding campsites, RV park reviews, and overnight parking. You can see a complete list of my travel apps at my Tech Stuff page.
If you have some good apps that you use, please share them in a comment.