Best Apps All RVers Should Have
Rving is one of America’s favorite past times and ways to vacation. Traveling the US with your home on wheels has become all the rage, and with that comes a learning curve. Where should you go? How do you get there? What campgrounds should you visit? All these questions and a lot of the answers are found in your app store and can be accessed from your smartphone while you explore the world. Here is a list of our recommended best apps all RVers should have!
Best Apps for Finding Campsites
If you are looking for free or affordable campsites, Campendium is one of the best. Within the app, you can search by location and find the perfect campsite, from parking lots, state parks, or one of the fancy bougie RV resorts. They also list dump stations if you just need a place to empty out your black and gray tanks.
Use the filters within the app to help you decide what campsite is suitable for you. One of the advantages of using this feature is that you can niche down to the campsite that will fit you to a T. If you want a pool, hot tub, walking trails, full hookups, and a store, all you need to do is check those boxes, and the app will populate the best matches.
Users can also upgrade with the app to membership to Road Pass Pro, which includes RoadTrippers, RVillage, and To Go RV. What will this do for you? The app becomes ad-free and opens up a plethora of other filtering options. One thing that people rave about in this app is that it gives you information about cell phone service and hot spot coverage by all the major carriers.
The Dyrt was created to bring a community of campers together and create a space for campers to share “the dirt” on where to camp with other campers. Not all campgrounds are the same, and The Dyrt is the app to find one that will suit all your RVing needs.
The Dyrt allows you to search for campsites in a particular area and filter based on what kind of site you’re looking for, the nightly price, and amenities. Each landing page for all the campgrounds is formatted the same, easy to understand, and packed with helpful information, including whether the site gets a cell signal without paying a pro service fee.
You can upgrade to Pro membership which will get you offline maps, dispersed camping maps, a detailed cell service map, a route planner, discounts at 1,000 campgrounds, and waived booking fees.
Tip: The Dyrt has a feature where you can get an alert for availability if a campground you were interested in was previously booked but now has a site.
One of the most unique apps is Harvest Host. If you are not familiar with this way to camp, get ready to have your mind blown. Harvest Host is a curated list of over 4,000 wineries, breweries, farms, museums, and attractions that invite RVers to stay overnight. Locations are throughout the US and Canada.
You have to become a member of Harvest Host to use the service, BUT that fee includes all of your stays. While staying with your host, you are expected to purchase something if they have items to sell or tour the museum you parked at. This is truly a unique way to see North America. Can you imagine yourself camping beside a beautiful California winery or a Wisconsin dairy farm? Harvest Host is a great way to support local businesses as you RVs!
A few things that some consider a drawback is that you must have a self-contained RV with a toilet, wastewater system, and indoor kitchen. RVers are subject to the hosts’ availability and the businesses’ open hours. When you arrive, the host has to be around to tell you where to park, and you can purchase their products. Guests can only stay one night at a time, so these stops are great as you drive through rather than as a final destination.
Best Apps for Wayfinding
This is the most used app for travel on a day-to-day basis! Users can use this app to plan the route and add multiple stops along the way. As you are traveling, this app will automatically update your route to reroute you a faster way if there is heavy traffic or an accident on your path. Going out of cell service range? No problem; you can download offline maps to use.
Tip: Use Google Maps to find different businesses along your route, things like gas, restaurants, grocery stores, and more.
The only downside to Google Maps as an RVer is that it does not take into account that you are pulling an RV. Often we find ourselves on a small country road looking at one another sideways, thinking ….how are we going to get off this road. You will need to find ways to look for low bridges and really tight switchbacks in mountainous areas.
Tip: Do research before you go; one time, I took my husband on the tail of the dragon in North Carolina because Google Maps said it was the fastest way to get to Fontana Dam. He did not talk to me for a day or two!
Traveling with an RV behind can create some driving stress, so the RV Life app is perfect for what RVers need. While researching, I realized this app is excellent for many things, but the GSP app allows you to plan your route and customize it based on your RVs height, weight, and length. It really is like Google Maps, but made for RVers by Rvers.
The great thing about this app is it is more than wayfinding. Within the app, you can find campgrounds, RV tips, suggestions, and built-in travel guides for things to do in the area you are going to explore.
The RV Life app is 49.99 per year, and if you want to try it out, use the 7-day free trial to see if it is worth it to you. Never really having to worry about the size of the rig while driving down the road again is pretty enticing.
Best Fuel-Saving Apps
GasBuddy is one of the best gas apps around. This crowd-sourced gas app relies on users to report real-time prices at gas stations. And with over 100 million downloads, it’s become one of the best ways to find the best deals on fuel. Above all, you can download the app for free and look at local gas prices immediately; no account is needed.
Gas Station Apps
Have a personal favorite place to get gas while RVing? Download that app; not only do they show you where they are on a map, but you can also see the gas prices in real time. These apps usually have points systems, and you can save money by being a loyal customer.
- Flying J
We all love bringing our best friends along with us on the RV road trip; download the Bring Fido app to find pet-friendly campgrounds, places to eat, or shops where Fido can come along. Want to find a place to let your pet stretch its legs along your route? They have you covered! Another great feature is they have curated a list of pet sitters for when you might need to be gone from the RV longer than you want to leave your buddy alone.
Original blog written by Brandy Gleason, author of Gleason Family Adventures and owner of a Heartland Sundance 294BH.