Everyone with children knows that keeping the kids entertained, and keeping the family on track, is key to a successful mobile life. With that in mind, I have found 12apps that help keep everyone happy!
For the Trip or On the Go:
1) iExit – Free The iExit app uses your location to find what services are available at upcoming highway exits. It gives you a list of rest areas, hotels, restaurants, gas stations, and more. If you and the kids have a favorite place to eat, or other services you prefer, then you can mark the it as a favorite and iExit will tell you if it’s coming up anytime soon along your route. This saves you time and groans as you won’t be getting off the highway too soon or settling for those “less than favorite food options. Available on: Android, iOS
Time for a gas & bathroom break? But want to get the best prices ahead? This app finds gas stations on & near your route then lists the price of gas at these locations. Saves time and money! Available on Android, iOS, Windows & Blackberry
3) Google Maps: Wherever I go, I rely heavily on Google Maps. The turn-by–turn directions work well, and I love that the application detects any delays up ahead, such as accidents, heavy traffic, or construction detours, and automatically offers a faster route. I find it a great in-car GPS navigation system with the added bonus of being able to use it on my phone & not having to purchase another device. *Note. If your connection seems shaky, make sure to tap on the turn by turn directions screen, so that you can still find your way to your destination despite the lack of cell service! It even works when you are walking or biking! Available on: Android, iOS, Web
4) Yelp: For finding places that the whole family can enjoy I turn to Yelp. Search for places to eat, shop, drink, relax and have fun. You can read reviews from an active community of locals in the know. Available on: Android, iOS, Windows
5) Gogobot: This is an all-around social travel app that helps you find places to stay, eat, and play. Gogobot’s large community of users upload photos, information, and ratings for the locations and tags them based on differing interests such as family, local, budget, foodie etc. You can even explore a location ahead of time and save points of interest to a list in the application. The photos that are taken by its globetrotting users helps you get a better idea of what you might find at different places of interest. Available on: Android, iOS
And Don’t Forget the Educational & Entertainment Apps!
6) For Kids ages 3-7. The Counting Parrots Game, by Yingele provides a fun, entertaining mathematics learning experience for children ages 3-7. Children learn to count, associate numbers with quantities, practice patterns and grouping, understand simple equations, and strengthen fine motor skills and memory. I loved the simplicity and colorful images presented by this application as well as the fun way that allows wee ones to learn a necessary skill! Available for iOS Android & Amazon
7) Heads up: Ages 6 and up, a Warner brothers game, Heads Up! is the fun and hilarious game that Ellen DeGeneres plays on her TV show, now available as an app!
8) Heads up pictures.”Heads Up!” Pictures is the same fun group game as “Heads Up!” — but with pictures instead of words! It’s perfect for players of all ages, no matter their reading level or their language! Available onAndroid& iOS,
9) The Kindle App: A must have for the whole family that loves to read! This app allows you to read thousands of free books, including popular classics like: The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes and Treasure Island.
You can even stock up by borrowing free library eBooks, and have it delivered wirelessly to your kindle app. Available on Android, iOS, and many other platforms. To see all platforms that are available, visit Amazon Kindle apps.
10) * Not Free, but great for kids & adults on the go, there is the Audible app: Listen to audio books on your smartphone, Fire tablet, Echo and more. This download is available for Android, iOS, Windows – and for more platforms visit audible at amazon This app requires a subscription, but is available for a free trial period.
11) Rory’s story Cubes: ages 7 and up.
According to the website, “9 cubes, 54 images, over 10 million combinations and infinite stories. Shake to roll the cubes. Create a story using all 9 face-up images.Keep all your Rory’s Story Cubes® in one place with the app. The ultimate, mobile storytelling game loved by children, parents and grandparents on the go, creative writers, progressive teachers and games masters.
Included in the app are Rory’s Story Cubes®: Originals and the newly released Rory’s Story Cubes® Mix: Clues, change your story by mixing the cubes. Now you can “Craft tales of Cracking Crime.” Additional sets are now available as in-app purchases. See more ways to play at www.storycubes.com.” Available on iOS and Android
12) 4 Picks 1 Word: Four pictures that have one word in common – what is it? 4 Pics 1 Word is a word puzzle game There are over 150,000,000 4 Pics 1 Word enthusiasts playing across the globe in 8 languages. All platforms are available below:
And last but not least, no matter how many apps you download, a fast and reliable wireless network and a great smartphone or tablet with a long lasting battery, makes the trip flow along smoothly.
My network, Verizon Wireless, and my samsung family of products make my mobile life a lot easier!
Images courtesy of the apps websites. Image of the Jefferson Memorial taken by me, several years ago, using a #Samsung Galaxy note 3.