Our 9 Favorite Apps for the Modern Snowbird Life

Both of us have dozens of apps on our phones and other mobile devices. Other than the usual culprits (e.g., Facebook, Instagram, Amazon), we have 9 favorites we use on a daily basis. Most of the apps we use are free, but a couple are well worth the small cost. Check out our list below and let us know whether you have others we should be using!

1TODOIST

Cost: Free (or, you can pay a fee to upgrade with more functionality)

How we use it: We have lists for just about everything: groceries, Christmas gift ideas, places we want to visit, stuff we can’t forget when we go camping.  You name it…we have a list.  We use Todoist to make and manage multiple lists.  The great thing is you can choose to share or not share your lists with others.  We share our grocery list so we can both see what we need if we just happen to be in Wal-Mart or Fry’s.  But, we keep other lists to ourselves!

2GAS BUDDY

Cost: Free

How we use it: We use Gas Buddy to find the cheapest gas in our area or along our travel route. We can’t tell you how many times we’ve been in small towns across the US and been able to find much cheaper fuel just by pulling out our phones and searching within 1-2 miles. A great example was when we were in Laramie, Wyoming, on our way to Denver. Diesel fuel was $1.00 per gallon cheaper just by driving a few blocks off the interstate. When we’re filling up our diesel dually, we can save $30+.

3FLIPBOARD

Cost: Free

How we use it: Pretty much every morning, you’ll find both of us laying in bed for 10-15 minutes looking at articles on Flipboard. What we love about Flipboard is that you can decide what type of “news” you want to see. Holly can see the latest on the royal family, college basketball, and travel while Carter reads up on tech gadgets, solar energy, and fashion (or not!).

4ALLSTAYS

Cost: $9.99

How we use it: We use AllStays when we’re on the road to help us find RV parks, good spots to boondock, dump stations, etc. AllStays is a one stop shop for RVers. The only thing you can’t do is actually make a reservation. But, it does have maps, reviews, photos, etc. We’ve found super remote campgrounds and picturesque boondocking spots that we would have never known about if we were just out on our own without the app.

Tip: You can share most apps with your family members.  For example, Carter purchased AllStays and then shared the app so we can both have access to it for one fee.  You don’t have to pay twice.

5PANDORA

Cost: Free

How we use it: If we’re listening to music (which is pretty much all the time), we’re listening to Pandora.  We have our favorite stations pre-programed in the app so we can listen on our phones and Bose stereos. 

6GOOGLE MAPS

Cost: Free

How we use it: When we’re traveling in the summer, we’re hauling a 35 foot trailer behind us. That means we don’t go down any street if we can’t tell we’ll be able to get out. The satellite imagery on Google Maps has helped us avoid gas stations without a second exit/entrance, narrow/tree-lined streets, and parking lots with tight turns. We’ve also used Google Maps to find tennis courts in places you’d never expect!

7DARK SKY

Cost: Free

How we use it: There are so many weather apps out there, but our favorite is Dark Sky.  It’s super accurate and we get our local forecast delivered at 7:30 sharp each morning.

8YELP

Cost: Free

How we use it: There are many many apps out there where you can to find reviews for just about everything. We like Yelp best because there are reviews for pretty much every town in the US. During the summer, we’re always looking for the cleanest laundromat, best Mexican food, quality hair stylist for Holly (Carter is a VIP at Great Clips – he gets a giftcard for $10 haircuts each year, so he considers himself a VIP and doesn’t have to worry about his locks 😊), etc. Yelp hasn’t ever let us down. With all of the reviews and photos available, it’s hard to be surprised.

9NETFLIX

Cost: $10.99 per month

How we use it: We are Netflix fanatics!  We love to watch movies and TV series when we’re traveling.  The great thing about Netflix is that we can download shows and watch them when we don’t have internet service.  We do that when we know we’re going to be in more remote locations.  That way we have something to zone out to in the evenings!

Tip: You can share the standard and premium Netflix subscriptions with 2 to 4 people. We share with our son, so it makes the subscription even less expensive.

We’re always looking for new apps to help with life’s daily chores.  If you have any suggestions, let us know.

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