Apps for the Family Road Trip

Ways to Save Money and Pass Time

summer road trip!

It’s time to ready the family truckster and hit the road. And we’ve got some apps to ease your travel angst.

Best Road Trip Ever
The app-eal:
It highlights the coolest offbeat spots along your route.
Helpful factor: Among the 7,000+ locations, pit stops like Route 66 landmark Snuffy’s Grill make Mom and Dad the best tour guides ever.
Who’s driving: Front-seat passengers.
Works on: iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad.
Cost: $4

The app-eal:
Find service stations with the cheapest gas for miles.
Helpful factor: Save money. Upgrade to a motel with HBO. Need we say more?
Who’s driving: Front-seat passengers.
Works on: iOS, Android, and Windows devices.
Cost: Free

Family Car Games
The app-eal: One hundred activities entertain on long stretches of interstate.
Helpful factor: The alphabet and license plate games will eventually play out. Arm yourself.
Who’s driving: Backseat passengers.
Works on: iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad.
Cost: $2

Bartleby’s Book of Buttons Vol. 1: the Far Away Island
The app-eal:
Buttons, switches, and sliders, oh my.
Fun factor: The interactive puzzles that kids need to solve before moving on with the story are ideal for readers, amusing for everyone.
Who’s driving: Backseat passengers.
Works on: iPad.
Cost: Free

Faces iMake
The app-eal:
Choose from hundreds of items like food, utensils, tools, toys, and candy for eyes, nose, mouth, and ears.
Fun factor: Thousands of combinations make it a time-passer of cross-country proportions.
Who’s driving: Backseat passengers.
Works on: iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad.
Cost: $1-$2

The app-eal:
Watch for signs, animals, and types of cars to get the heralded five in a row.
Fun factor: Roll down the windows and be prepared to hear squeals of “Bingo!”
Who’s driving: Backseat passengers.
Works on: iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad.
Cost: $1-$2

travel accessories for kids!Getting there is half the battle. We’ve found games and gear to get little ones from point A to point B — as well as more ideas on where point B should be.

this week in washington d.c.!

Celebrate Fairfax Festival

What: Hear tunes at the children’s stage, take a ride on the trackless train, and stop at the petting zoo.
Why: The KidWay MidWay’s rides are perfect for your tiny thrill-seeker (just be prepared for a chorus of Just one more time, pleaaaaase!).
When: Fri., 6 p.m.-midnight; Sat., 10 a.m.-midnight; Sun., 11 a.m.-7 p.m.
Where: Fairfax County Government Center, 12000 Government Center Pkwy., Fairfax. Tickets online at celebratefairfax.com. Adults and children 11 and up, $9-$57; children 3-10, $4-$44; under 3, free.

Jack and the Magic Beans
What: In the classic English folktale, a boy gets more than he bargains for when he sells the family cow.
Why: Take a few nonperishable food items for donation to Arlington Food Assistance Center.
When: Fri., 7:30 p.m.; Sat., 3 & 7:30 p.m.; Sun., 3 p.m.
Where: Thomas Jefferson Community Theatre, 125 S. Old Glebe Rd., Arlington. Tickets at 703-548-1154 or online at encorestage.org. Adults, $10; children, $8.

Crafty Tales for Toddlers

What: Stories, singing, and hands-on activities for budding literati (ages 2 and up).
Why: Tackle the ABCs with alphabet-themed books this week.
When: Ongoing. Mon., 10:30 a.m.
Where: Palisades Library, 4901 V St. NW, off MacArthur Blvd. (202-282-3139). Participation is free.

Photo: Image Source / Getty Images

Fairfax County Government Center
12000 Government Center Pkwy
Fairfax, VA 22030
Thomas Jefferson Community Theatre
125 S Old Glebe Rd
Arlington, VA 22204
4901 V St NW
off MacArthur Blvd
Washington, DC 20007