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10 Must-Have Apps To Ace Your Next Road Trip

10 Must-Have Apps To Ace Your Next Road Trip

This summer is the opportune time to go on a road trip with friends. If you are a college student, you are away from classes until August and have a couple of weeks to spare. With 20 percent of all Americans going on a road trip last year, you will most likely be in good company this year. While road trips can be fun and exciting, they aren’t for everyone and can be a bit nerve-racking for the antsy. But today, we will go over 10 must have road trip apps that will ensure that your next road trip is fun and goes smoothly.

Google Maps

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    Google Maps is a must for any individual with a car, feet, or a metro/bus ticket. The traffic, route changes, offline maps mode, and more makes Google Maps a great alternative to that of Apple Maps. Google Maps used to come with iPhones out of the box, however due to contract changes, Maps and YouTube are both only available by download. Thankfully, this wonderful map software is free from the App Store.

    Yelp

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      Yelp is helpful for any individual either in a new city or wanting to find a new place to eat or enjoy themselves in their own city. While Yelp does excel with restaurant reviews and information, you can also use Yelp to find the nearest gas station, reviews on nearby pit stops, and more. With the Bookmarks feature, you can mark your favorite restaurants you enjoyed while on the road. Yelp is a must for finding new sights and eats on the road.

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      Hotel Tonight

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        Whether your drive is becoming too long for you to stay awake or you have a change of accommodation plans, there are times when we will need to find a hotel on short notice. This is the situation when you can find yourself landing some of the best deals. With Hotel Tonight, you can simply search the city and after 9:00AM, hotel deals for only that specific day are made public and ready for you to reserve. A lot of individuals can find deals of upwards of 40 percent off.

        Gas Buddy

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          When you are on the road for a long period of time, you will find that you’ll need to get gas. That is just a given. However, what doesn’t have to be a given is paying out of your nose for it. With Gas Buddy, you can shop around for the best gas prices without having to waste more gas looking around in the process. You are able to mark the type of gas you use and sort the list based on distance, price, and more. Gas Buddy continually updates, ensuring you don’t experience sticker shock!

          Roadtrippers

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            As the saying goes, sometimes the fun can be found in the journey rather than getting to the destination. Roadtrippers is the application that exemplifies this saying. Instead of helping you find sights to see and activities to do at your destination city, Roadtrippers outlines great places to go, eat, and rest while on the road. Places you mark to visit, on your route, are all viewable on the Roadtrippers website.

            BestParking

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              When traveling to your vacation spot by car, you’ll also have to make use of this transportation while exploring the city as well. When in an unfamiliar city, one of the biggest plagues that hit drivers is the parking situation. Once you find a perfectly legal parking spot, you have to make sure it fits your car well without having to drive away with scratches and dints. This is all if you don’t have to pay out of the nose for that spot. BestParking is the app that works to alleve you of your parking woes.

              TripIt Travel Planner

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                The TripIt Travel Planner is essential for any individual travelling by plane, car, or rail. The TripIt planner allows you to outline your day-to-day activities you’ll partake in once you arrive to your destination, from start to finish. The destinations you visit all come with directions and weather information. You can even keep friends and family updated with the sharing features found with the TripIt planner.

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                Uber

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                  While you may find yourself driving to your destination, you may find that driving around the city can be a bit of an overkill after driving so many hours to get there. You may also find yourself enjoying a night of partying and don’t have a designated driver to get you to your hotel that night. This is where Uber comes in. Available in multiple large and mid-sized cities, Uber ensures you get from point A to point B at a lower cost than your cab (TAXI or UBERx). If you want to arrive in style, Black Car or SUV might be your transportation of choice. Uber brings the convenience of a personal driver to anyone.

                  Spotify

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                    A silent car ride isn’t a good part of a road trip. Many times, the radio simply isn’t planning the tunes you want to enjoy. While you can utilize iTunes, others in the car might want to enjoy something new. This is where Spotify comes in. With Spotify, recommendations are given based on preferences. You are able to listen to favorites while also enjoying new songs that fit the style and genre you like. This prevents having to constantly skip songs when your eyes should be on the road.

                    iExit Interstate Guide

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                      Interstate signs telling you the nearest restaurant or bathroom can be great, but they aren’t always 100 percent helpful. Say you are hungry and see a sign for an okay restaurant nearby. You get off the exit, eat, and get back on the road to only find that your favourite restaurant was only a couple of more exits ahead. iExit Interstate Guide prevents this from happening by giving you a full list of nearby restaurants, gas, ATMs for tolls, and pit stops. This gives you the power to choose ahead of time, ensuring your road trip runs smoothly.

                      If you are traveling by car this summer, these ten applications can make sure you are having the time of your life. Let us know in the comments below where you’re headed this summer and which application you feel will best get you there.

                      Featured photo credit: BBC via ichef.bbci.co.uk

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                      Last Updated on November 11, 2019

                      How to Improve Memory and Boost Your Brainpower

                      How to Improve Memory and Boost Your Brainpower

                      Have you ever noticed that some people are able to effortlessly remember even the most mundane details and quickly comprehend new things? Well, you can too!

                      To unlock the full potential of your brain, you need to keep it active and acute. Wasting time on your couch watching mindless television shows or scrolling through facebook is not going to help.

                      Besides getting out flashcards, what can you do to help remember things better and learn new things more quickly? Check out these 10 effective ways on how to improve memory:

                      1. Exercise and Get Your Body Moving

                      Exercising doesn’t just exercise the body, it also helps to exercise your brain. Obesity and the myriad of diseases that eventually set in as a result of being overweight can cause serious harm to the brain.

                      Furthermore, without regular exercise, plaque starts to build up in your arteries, and your blood vessels begin to lose the ability to effectively pump blood. Plaque buildup leads to heart attacks and it also reduces the amount of oxygen and nutrients that your blood carries to your brain. When the nutrients don’t make it there, the brain’s ability to function is compromised.

                      To prevent this from happening, make sure you get moving every day. Even if it’s just a brisk walk, it’ll help you maintain and increase your mental acuity. Brisk walking, swimming and dancing are all excellent activities. Take a look at these 5 Ways to Find Time for Exercise.

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                      2. Eliminate Stressors and Seek Help If You’re Depressed

                      Anything that causes you major stress, like anger or anxiety, will in time begin to eat away the parts of your brain that are responsible for memory. Amongst the most brain-damaging stressors is depression, which is actually often misdiagnosed a a memory problem since one of its primary symptoms is the inability to concentrate.

                      If you can’t concentrate, then you might feel like you are constantly forgetting things. Depression increases the levels of cortisol in your bloodstream which elevates the cortisol levels in the brain. Doctors have found that increased cortisol diminishes certain areas of the brain, especially the hippocampus which is where short-term memories are stored.

                      Prolonged depression can thus destroy your brain’s ability to remember anything new. Seek professional help to combat your depression – your brain will thank you.

                      3. Get a Good Night’s Sleep and Take Naps

                      Getting a consistent 7 to 8 hours of sleep each night will increase your memory. During sleep, the brain firms up memories of recently acquired information.

                      Getting enough sleep will help you get through the full spectrum of nocturnal cycles that are essential to optimal brain and body functioning during the waking hours. Taking a nap throughout the day, especially after learning something new, can also help you to retain those memories as well as recharge your brain and keep it sharper longer.

                      4. Feed Your Brain

                      Fifty to sixty percent of the brain’s overall weight is pure fat, which is used to insulate its billions of nerve cells. The better insulated a cell is, the faster it can send messages and the quicker you will be thinking.

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                      This is precisely why parents are advised to feed their young children whole milk and to restrict dieting – their brains’ need fat to grow and work properly. Skimping on fats can be devastating even to the adult brain.

                      Thus, eating foods that contain a healthy mix of fats is vital for long-term memory. Some excellent food choices include fish (especially anchovies, mackerel and wild salmon) and dark leafy green vegetables. Here’re more brain food choices: 12 Foods that Can Improve Your Brain Power

                      Deep-fried foods obviously contain fat but their lack of nutritional value is not going to help your brain or your body, so think healthy foods and fats.

                      5. Eat Breakfast and Make Sure It Includes an Egg

                      According to Larry McCleary, M.D., author of  The Brain Trust Program, an egg is the ideal breakfast. Eggs contain B vitamins which help nerve cells to burn glucose, antioxidants that protect neurons against damage; and omega-3 fatty acids that keep nerve cells firing at optimal speed.

                      Other foods to add to your breakfast include fruits, veggies and lean proteins. Avoid trans fats and high fructose corn syrup. Trans fats diminish the brain cells’ ability to communicate with each other and HFCS can actually shrink the brain by damaging cells.

                      Having a healthy breakfast in the morning has been shown to improve performance throughout the day. If you’re too busy to have a healthy breakfast, this maybe just right for you: 33 Quick And Healthy Breakfasts For Busy Mornings

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                      6. Write it Down

                      If there’s something you want to remember, writing it down can help.

                      It may sound like a no-brainer, but do you really know why? Writing it down creates oxygenated blood flow to areas of your brain that a responsible for your memories and literally exercises those parts of it. Here’s How Writing Things Down Can Change Your Life.

                      You can start a journal, write yourself emails or even start keeping a blog – all of these activities will help to improve your capacity to remember and memorize information.

                      7. Listen to Music

                      Research shows that certain types of music are very helpful in recalling memories. Information that is learned while listening to a particular song or collection can often be recalled by thinking of the song or “playing” it mentally. Songs and music can serve as cues for pulling up particular memories.

                      8. Visual Concepts

                      In order to remember things, many people need to visualize the information they are studying.

                      Pay attention to photographers, charts and other graphics that might appear in your textbook; or if you’re not studying a book, try to pull up a mental image of what it is you are trying to remember. It might also help to draw your own charts or figures, or utilize colors and highlighters to group related ideas in your notes.

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                      Here, you can learn How to Become a Person Who Can Visualize Results.

                      9. Teach Someone Else

                      Reading material out loud has been shown to significantly improve memory of the material. Expanding further upon this idea is the fact that psychologists and educators have found that by having students teach new concepts to others, it helps to enhance understanding and recall.

                      Teach new concepts and information to a friend or study partner, and you’ll find you remember the information a lot better.

                      10. Do Crossword Puzzles, Read or Play Cards

                      Studies have shown that doing crossword puzzles, read or play cards on a daily basis not only keep your brain active but also help to delay memory loss, especially in those who develop dementia.

                      So pick up the daily newspaper and work on that crossword puzzle, read a book or enjoy a game of solitaire.

                      Pick one to two of these tips first and start applying them to your everyday life. Very soon you’ll find yourself having better memories and a clearer head!

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                      Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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