When the craving for adventure hits, there is no greater cure than a spontaneous road trip. If you’re itching to hit the road without an itinerary, grab your smartphone (and maybe a change of clothes). Below are some of our favorite mobile apps that will help turn your smartphone into the ultimate copilot.


Reliable navigation is crucial. Fortunately, there are plenty of great navigation mobile apps to choose from. If unexpected traffic jams get you down, avoid the gridlock with Waze. This app offers real-time traffic updates based on feedback from other users of the app. For those who love the scenic route, Roadtrippers can help you see the sights along the way. You can even have this app create a customized travel plan based on your interests—the ultimate adventure!

Canine Copilots

If you’re road tripping with a canine copilot, check out BringFido. This app is going to help you find all the dog-friendly restaurants, hotels, parks, and attractions along the way. You can also read reviews and tips from other pet-lovers. This app is currently iOS only, but there is also a BringFido website.

Perfect Pit Stops

When it’s time to refuel and grab a snack, iExit will let you know what options you’ll find at each upcoming off-ramp. This takes the guesswork out of stopping right here, or giving it a few miles. GasBuddy is another great mobile app that you can use specifically for finding the closest, and cheapest, gas stations.


Before hitting the road, always make sure your vehicle is up-to-date on routine maintenance to help prevent wasting time and money on surprise repairs. In case you do run into car trouble, a roadside assistance app such as Urgent.ly can help you find a service center when you’re far away from home and your trusted local dealership.


You can still step out of your routine with a spontaneous summer road trip, without blowing your budget. An app like GoodBudget allows you to set up spending guardrails by creating several virtual “envelopes” of money for different spending categories (e.g. food, gas, attractions). This way, you’re less likely to overspend in any one category, and can divide up your big budget to cover everything you want to do.

What’s your ultimate road trip destination? We want to hear about it in the comments below!