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Road Trip Planning
Old 09-29-2015, 08:21 AM   #1
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Road Trip Planning

Does anyone use any type of a road trip planner or app? We are planning a trip and I would like an application that will make it easier to split the trip into driving hours, finding hotels, points of interest, restaurants, etc.

Now I know I can do this all manually. I do use Trip Adviser a lot . But it would be nice to have an app where I can keep everything in one place.

The other option is just to go to AAA and get a triptick and start from there. Just curious as to how everyone else plans a road trip. Thanks!
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Old 09-29-2015, 08:54 AM   #2
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Google maps and GPS, do most prelim planning on home desktop. Check on next day with laptop at a motel (or my son does it on his smartphone but my eyes like the big screen).
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Old 09-29-2015, 09:01 AM   #3
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I use google maps, making my own map in my "my maps" account. It's great for planning out each day's route so that you get just the right amount of travel time per day. I can also access it from my phone or iPad.
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Old 09-29-2015, 09:04 AM   #4
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I've used roadtrippers.com a couple of times. It should do what you want. Has an app too.
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Old 09-29-2015, 03:51 PM   #5
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I've tried a good many of the various apps and haven't found one that really fits the bill. Like you, I'd like to type in how many hours I want to drive and see where that takes me. Default is Google, which I use desktop and mobile, and is ok for planning purposes and mapping out a long distance trip and breaking it up into days.
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Old 09-29-2015, 04:53 PM   #6
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You might want to look into Tripit.com

I use it for all my travels. It's excellent for keeping track of reservations - when you get a reservation confirmation in email, you forward it to plans@tripit.com and they automatically it it into your trip, parsing out all the details like address and confirmation number.

You do the same for flights and other stuff like car rentals.

For a road trip, you can also add in point to point directions for each leg of the trip (which gives times even if they route they suggest isn't exactly the one you are taking).

They automatically add in useful stuff for each leg of the trip like weather reports and driving directions from the airport to the hotel you are staying at.

There are lots of other features like sharing your plans with others - we used to use this at w@rk to keep track of who's doing what, and I still find it useful to share my plans with relatives so someone has some idea of where I might be when I'm on the road.

Oh, besides the web interface, they have a nice app too.
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Old 09-29-2015, 04:54 PM   #7
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I've used the my maps in google maps - it does a good job of storing what you figure out.

I use tripit for all the reservations/activities/etc.
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Old 09-29-2015, 08:07 PM   #8
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Weird, I never thought of using tripit for road trips. I use it extensively for air and car rental info now.
What a great tip! Thanks!
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Old 09-29-2015, 08:29 PM   #9
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This is not an answer to your question but I found an interesting piece of information the other day that may be of great use.

We planned to take a road trip Nov 1st+/- to visit family in Florida and I decided to check out a rental car from Grapetown through Priceline. I ended up with a full size sedan with unlimited miles ONE WAY for $8.00/day to Fort Myers for 8 days, although it could have been longer. We then fly back nonstop via Southwest for $121.00 same day. I guess they're repositioning cars for the snow birds.

In the spring we will try the reverse, and take our road trip in reverse, if the rates are low.
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Old 09-29-2015, 08:49 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Debinnov a View Post
Does anyone use any type of a road trip planner or app? We are planning a trip and I would like an application that will make it easier to split the trip into driving hours, finding hotels, points of interest, restaurants, etc.

Now I know I can do this all manually. I do use Trip Adviser a lot . But it would be nice to have an app where I can keep everything in one place.

The other option is just to go to AAA and get a triptick and start from there. Just curious as to how everyone else plans a road trip. Thanks!
I usually start by trying to identify what golf courses I want to play along the route. Then I'll use googlemaps to sketch out a tentative plan. Then along the way I usually decide to take off on a two lane that goes more or less in the direction I intend to be heading. This usually does not end with me getting lost although it has led to some lengthy detours. This strategy (random two lanes) is more successful in states that have their county roads set up on a grid (thank you, Northwest Ordinance of 1787).
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Old 09-29-2015, 11:34 PM   #11
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Thanks everyone. I will check out Trip It and roadtrippers.com!
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Old 09-30-2015, 12:09 PM   #12
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I use google maps & the my maps feature to save my plans. I haven't found anything that takes an input on number of hours of driving per day, and figures out convenient stops on a multi-day trip.

Roadtrippers.com is useful to find interesting places to stop along the way.
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Old 09-30-2015, 12:21 PM   #13
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The Trip Advisor road Trip Forum is a good resource Road Trips Forum - TripAdvisor
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Old 09-30-2015, 03:30 PM   #14
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Google maps usually works for me. Lately though, it's been giving me short cuts utilizing obscure county roads, that supposedly are shorter and quicker. This is true perhaps if one has the competence to take 30 mph curves at 60 mph. I'm back to the state numbered highways.

Even on long distance interstate trips, their ETE's seem a little optimistic. I think they calculate a 70 mph average. Which for most drivers, and most trips, is pretty difficult to do.
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Old 09-30-2015, 05:09 PM   #15
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Even on long distance interstate trips, their ETE's seem a little optimistic.
I believe the problem is that any routing method (Google maps, a Garmin GPS, whatever) can only go by the posted speed limits. There is no way to account for traffic lights, stop signs, necessary stops for gas, food, leg stretching, etc.

When I start out on a long drive, I just mentally add an hour to whatever arrival time the planner shows. That generally works pretty well for me.
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Old 09-30-2015, 05:18 PM   #16
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For on route travel we use Google maps to get the hours between various locations and then the Expedia app to locate hotels in the area. Expedia gives a very good graphic of the hotels/motels in towns, but I usually book the hotels on their websites because the prices are the same but with the option to cancel should plans change (breakdowns etc).
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Old 09-30-2015, 05:40 PM   #17
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I believe the problem is that any routing method (Google maps, a Garmin GPS, whatever) can only go by the posted speed limits. There is no way to account for traffic lights, stop signs, necessary stops for gas, food, leg stretching, etc.
Generally the various nav systems take into account real time traffic info. I've been rerouted a number of times when there is bad traffic ahead. This is VERY useful on a trip when driving through a city. I've used this when using Apple maps, Waze, Mercedes and VW built in systems. They all have access to real time traffic info.

But you're right about stops. I try to stop a lot (more than than I used to) and it certainly does change the ETA.
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Old 09-30-2015, 07:42 PM   #18
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I've found our garmin's estimated driving times to be highly consistent with the actual driving times. We don't take a lot of stops, but if I drive the speed limit to 5 mph over and stop for gas every 4 hours, the time taken for the brief stop equals the time we save by driving a little over the speed limit. As posted above, the systems generally compute driving times based on posted speed limits. Each line segment on the map is a database record with line length, speed limit, beginning and ending address no's, street name, pavement type, etc. so the system calculates the time to drive the length of each segment at the speed limit, sums them up, and arrives at an ETA.


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