What are the best road trip planning apps for camping and RVs? You’ll be surprised to discover just how many options exist! Of course, a well-designed trip planner app can save you time, money, and headaches when planning your family road trip. Usually, when you’re traveling with kids, you’ll have a destination in mind, unsure of where to make your stops or what to see along your route. This is where technology comes in! Apps can perform quicker than a mobile website by storing preferences, making your road trip searches easier. Yet there are a plethora of camping and RV apps out there, so much so it’s often hard to determine which are the best for your family road trip. Take a look at these options we’ve gathered using contributor tips to start downloading the 13 Best Road Trip Planning Apps For Camping and RVs!
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Road Trip Planning Apps for Families
Knowing your final destination is often the first step in planning your road trip. All of the stops, attractions, and stays along the way will typically need further researching too. When looking for a trip planner app for your next family vacation, you’ll want to ensure it has a navigation tool, and can easily make suggestions of things to see and do during your road trip. Here are a few apps we’ve found to be the most popular amongst traveling families!
Roadtrippers is a fun way to get to know more about the area you are visiting! This trip planner app maps your route and pins local attractions, restaurants, camping, and popular sights along your route. In fact, there is so much information on there, it may even introduce you to novel things to do in your hometown area. In addition to allowing for US travel, Roadtrippers also offers European family trip planning as well, providing route plans in multiple countries around the world. This app features in-app purchases, and a Roadtrippers Plus option to upgrade for a $29.99 annual fee. It’s also available in both Google and Apple Stores!
ViaMichelin is a comprehensive navigation tool perfect for planning your next family road trip! It is a route planner that can show all the sights and accommodations, as well as computing your travel costs such as gas price and usage. ViaMichelin is especially useful for international travel and for RV camping outside the US. It is a free app available in both Apple and Google Stores.
Road Trip Planning Apps for RV and Tent Camping
Camping has become an increasingly sought-after family vacation option! Whether tent camping or RV camping, it is important to find a campsite that suits all of your family’s needs. Essential things to look for are accessibility, campground amenities, as well as hook-up availability, among other considerations. Having this information available through a trip planner app can save time and headaches while on your family road trip!
The Campendium app was “created by campers for campers.” As such, it offers easy, searchable criteria, and a great map feature that allows you to open their map in either Google or Apple maps. It doesn’t provide flipping between two apps for location searches, however. Its reviews of various campsites and locations given by Campendium App users provide practical information, though, such as if there is cell service where you’re headed. Insider tips definitely allow for the best travel experience on Campendium! Here is a way to get it on your Android device.
RV Life App
RV Life App is another great trip planner app to navigate an upcoming family road trip! Available for both Android and Apple phones, it offers in-app purchases with an upgrade available for a fee. It also includes trip navigation, things to do along your route, inclement weather you may encounter, as well as tips and reviews from fellow RVers. When planning its road trip suggestions, RV Life App also takes the specific height, length, and weight of your travel set-up into consideration.
RV Parky App
Featuring no ads, RV Parky is free and has no strings attached. Available for both Android and Apple users, it’s quite refreshing to be provided with information backed by reviews from other travelers detailing their experiences. In fact, RV Parky is a true app for authentic outdoor enthusiasts, built by the RV community, for the RV community. Families looking for other activities may be short on options, though, since the RV Parky App is best used for RV travel. Tent camping can be found at RV sites here, but through the filter option only.
The Recreation.gov app is another one of the best trip planner apps for camping, RVing, and road-tripping! Available through the Apple Store and Google Play, it offers search features for tent camping, RV camping, and cabins/lookouts, alongside tickets, lotteries, and passes. Destinations are easily searchable and the map features make it really easy to see a location in relation to where your trip is taking you. Overall, Recreation.gov App is very easy to use and functional!
Allstays is one of the top-tier road trip planning apps for families! Costing $9.99 app for Apple users, it provides a comprehensive system to locate campsites, dump stations, rest areas, and so much more. Many filters allow you to search for specific needs as well, ensuring your vacation is everything you’d hoped for and beyond! Campgrounds included are KOA, private campgrounds, military famcamps, army corp campgrounds, and many others. Search endlessly within the Allstays app for both family tent camping and RV camping!
We would be remiss to not mention Dyrt, the “#1 camping app of 2020” for both tent camping and RV camping, as well as cabins. Luckily, it is available for both Apple and Android phones! Dyrt provides information about campsites across the US, including helpful reviews written by users. Search features include dispersed camping as an option, as well as off-line use, where you can find campsites off-grid. For those on a budget, there are various membership options for this app. While the annual membership is $35.99 for the advanced app, the Pro Gold Support is $119.99/year.
Road Trip Planning Apps For Off-grid or Free Camping
When trying to be frugal on a family road trip, free camping is a great way to save money. Also, as campgrounds become full during peak seasons, this may be your only option when in a pinch. Check out these apps that can help find an off-grid or free camping option for either RV camping or tent camping!
Boondocking is a term used to describe RV camping that is dry, so no hookups for water, electricity, or sewer. The Boondocking App can assist families in planning a trip like this, available through the Apple Store. Offering locations across the US, it provides cheap, free, and hassle-free RV camping spots because no reservations are needed. Boondocking lacks luxury and amenities, however, and it can really be as simple as a Wal-mart parking lot. Nearly 1000 locations are offered in the Boondocking App, mostly in the US, with more being added regularly.
USFS & BLM Campgrounds
USFS & BLM Campgrounds shows campgrounds belonging to the United States Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management. Marked/pinned locations can occasionally be off-kilter, however, and information about the location may be limited within the app. Further research could be required on the listed campsite to see how accessible the camping spot is. As a plus, these campgrounds are typically free or low cost, and may be best suited for tent camping. This app is only available through the Apple Store and it costs $0.99.
Avenza offers offline maps, GPS tracking, as well as a digital map store on your phone so you can be aware of your location even in the most remote areas. You can drop pins and add photos with information on various sites too. You will need to download specific maps for the area you are visiting, though. Depending on the state and the map, you can also find dispersed camping on the National Forest maps, as well. Again, Avenza may be best suited for family tent camping because of access to the sites.
Road Trip Planning Apps For RV Camping Outside The U.S.
Family RV campers outside of the U.S. don’t despair — there’s an app for you too! Here are two favorites for planning a camping trip abroad with kids.
Campercontact’s focus is to provide motorhome-friendly campsites across 50+ countries for RV camping outside the US. Most of the information is for European motorhome travel. It is available in 6 different languages and works well off-line, catering to its international clients. There is a limited free 7-day trial period and then there is an annual fee of L5.99 (UK).
Searchforsites is an application to search for RV camping outside the US, specifically campsites in Europe. With an additional off-line feature, it is also perfect for users who don’t have a constant Wi-Fi connection or don’t want to use data. Searchforsites has a free 3-day trial and then a yearly fee of L5.99 (UK). The app is available to purchase for both Android and Apple devices.
There are Road Trip Planning Apps for That!
Honestly, there are many road trip planning apps out there for tent camping and RVs! The Roadtripper App, RV Parky App, Allstays App, and Recreation.gov App have all been personal favorites for me. My best recommendation, however, is to simply start by downloading some of the free versions to fit your needs. Begin to use the app(s) and see what works for you and what information you may still be seeking. It may require downloading multiple apps to compliment each other or fill in gaps so you can have all the information for your travels. Just remember if you can’t find what you are looking for, “there is an app for that,” so keep searching! You will be sure to find one that will make your trips a little easier to plan.
Thank You To Our Community!
A special thank you to the Families Love Travel Facebook community who helped with the research for this article on the 13 Best Road Trip Planning Apps For Camping and RVs! They are a group of like-minded families who love adventure and exploring through travel. Join the Facebook community and the Instagram community to connect with other families who love the unique experiences travel has to offer, whether by air, train, or RV. It is also a safe place to ask questions and gather travel-related information specific to families. We welcome you!
Before departure, check out these family-favorite road trip games (article includes a free printable!).
Want to see more from Michelle? Find her on Instagram @adventuretolearn.
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