Apps that make driving easier
If you want to improve your fuel efficiency, there’s an app for that. Need on-demand cheap parking locations from your phone? You guessed it, there’s an app for that too. To save you the time of having to try these apps out for yourself, we’ve put together our own list to help you decide which ones are worth a download.
Sat nav apps – get the best route to your destination.
- Google Maps – gives turn-by-turn navigation instructions, and prompts you to get into the correct lane. Make a wrong turn and you’ll be re-routed based on real-time traffic updates, so you don’t get stuck in bumper-to bumper traffic.
- Waze – “The world’s largest community-based traffic and navigation app”, share and get real-time information on traffic jams and road conditions. Use Waze Community for getting information on the cheapest fuel prices.
- CoPilot – these 2D and 3D maps clearly show exits on busy interchanges. Maps are high quality, regularly updated, and are available offline for when you don’t have signal. There is also a version for caravan drivers that avoids routes with low bridges.
Parking apps – never spend hours looking for a space again.
- Parkopedia – the closest parking space is displayed with parking fee information. Added features let you pre-book a space and pay for it online.
- JustPark – get the option of off-street and on-street parking spaces, including spaces in private driveways. The ‘see space availability’ feature shows the likelihood of a space being available when you arrive. The app also lets you reserve and pay for spaces in advance to guarantee parking.
- AppyParking – covers London and 11 other UK cities. The app shows on and off-street parking on an interactive map with information on parking availability and how much it costs. Once you’ve found a space, you can also use the app to pay.
Fuel and performance apps – make improvements to your fuel consumption
- Fuelly – tracks your fuel consumption over time and highlights any potential performance issues with your car. Add your vehicle to the app and log each time you fill up. Browse community data and compare your consumption to the average for your make and model of car.
- Plugshare – search for places to charge your electric car. View photos, ratings and availability of charging stations, a payment feature is also available.
- Manufacturer apps – specific to your brand of car, these apps can keep a record of your car’s service history, upcoming services, as well as display warnings and maintenance alerts.
Hands free and distracted driving – keep your hands and eyes free, and concentrate on driving
- DriveSafe.ly – reads text and emails while you’re driving so you can stay in-the-loop, without touching your phone. It can also send a customised auto-response, so your contacts know that you’re on the road.
- Drivemode – streamlines using your phone when you drive. Use voice-enabled commands for replying to messages or searching for directions.
- Lifesaver – for worried parents, Lifesaver can block phone usage of loved ones while they’re driving. It also allows you to monitor their driving behaviour and can send alerts to tell you they’ve arrived safely.
These are just a selection of some of the apps we found to help improve your drive – if you have a favourite, let us know over on our Facebook page. Don’t forget, using your phone while driving has been made illegal, so resist the temptation to take your hands off the wheel to check a message. Keep your eyes on the road, not on your phone.