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A successful road trip needs proper planning and execution. Whether you’re going on a family road trip, taking off for spring break, or just looking to get out of dodge, the proper set of tools will ensure you make the most of your vacation.

In this article, we’ll list some of our favorite tools for deciding where to go, how to get there, what to see along the way, and how to document your journey.

Great Tools for Planning Your Road Trip Vacation

Decide Where to Go with Instagram

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Before any trip can begin, you need to have a destination. Choosing where to go can be a tough choice, but Instagram is an excellent tool for inspiring your road trip.

Its abundance of images can help you decide where you want to go and what stops you want to make along the way. After all, a picture is worth a thousand words, and video stories often show you behind the scenes of a destination.

Using Instagram’s search function, you can search for general or specific locations. You will then be presented with a variety of user-generated images and can save and categorize them into different folders for reference later on.

Do take the time to watch stories as well as browsing images; while images may often be heavily filters, stories give you a real insight into what a place is like, what you can do there, and whether you’ll actually like it.

Planning your Route with Maptive

Once you know where you’re going, you need to map your trip route. A useful tool for this is Maptive. Maptive allows you to create a personalized map with turn by turn navigation.

Maptive is web-based and can be used on your desktop or phone. It can also be downloaded for offline reference. It really comes in handy for optimizing your route to ensure you get to your destination in a time-efficient manner.

You can use it to plot stops and discover attractions to visit near your route. It also features a drive time polygons tool that lets you determine how much time it will take you to get to other locations on your map.

Make the Most of Your Trip with Trello

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Now that you know where you’re going and how you’re going to get there, it’s time to pack. Trello lets you create several different virtual checklists so you can keep track of what you need.

When planning a road trip, you’ll want a list for clothing, another for food, and a third for car essentials like a first aid kit and maintenance tools.

You might also want to keep a list of the stops you plan on making, the sights you want to see, and your budget.

Find Campgrounds with The Dyrt

If you’re traveling in an RV or just like the outdoors, you may want to spend your nights at campgrounds rather than a hotel.

The Dyrt features an extensive database of campgrounds in the US, including free campsites and RV resorts. It’s a mobile app that lets you find campsites on the go, and can be used offline with their downloadable map feature.

Plan a Hotel Stay with

Finding a hotel along your road trip route can be a difficult task. You’re often required to look through pages and pages of search results to find the one or two hotels that meet your needs. makes this task easier by letting you input your starting point and destination and then specifying how long you want to drive or how many miles you want to go before stopping at a hotel.

It will then provide you with a list of hotels within the range you specified. Additionally, you have the option to book the hotel in advance from their app.

Save on Gas with Gas Buddy

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Gas Buddy is a mobile and desktop app that allows you to discover the cheapest gas prices along your route.

The app includes a trip cost calculator and a directory of local gas prices that specifies the gas stops along your route that will save you the most money.

Furthermore, you can add in the make, model, and year of your car for an estimate of how much you’ll need to budget for gas.

Document your Trip with Facebook

Lastly, you’ll want to make sure to keep a record of your trip. A great way to do this is through Facebook.

You can post pictures and updates along the way and tag each post with your location. At the end of your trip, you can create an album of all your images and posts that includes a timeline of where and when you took pictures.

A road trip is a great way to see a country. However, to be successful, you need a few tools to plan and prepare.

The tools we listed above will help you decide where to go, figure how to get there, determine what you need, find out where to stop and stay, help you save on gas, and keep a record of your journey

Megan is an Australian Journalist and award-winning travel writer who has been blogging since 2007. Her husband Mike is the American naturalist and wildlife photographer behind Waking Up Wild; an online magazine dedicated to opening your eyes to the wonders of the wild & natural world.

Having visited 100+ countries across all seven continents, Megan’s travels focus on cultural immersion, authentic discovery and incredible journeys. She has a strong passion for ecotourism, and aims to promote responsible travel experiences.


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