My Favorite Travel Apps for Motorcycle Touring and Road Trip Planning

REVER Motorcycle Travel App

One of the most popular questions I get asked is about the travel apps I use to plan my motorcycle trips. From planning my ride routes, checking the radar, to booking flights and campsites, I will be going over every travel app I use in this blog!

Motorcyclist Checking Phone

I love the logistics part of road trips. Putting together epic ride routes through the country’s best scenic byways, finding great campsites, eating at local restaurants that will have me dreaming of coming back…it’s all a part of my trip-planning process. The reality is, I don’t love using tons of fancy apps. I really enjoy keeping the process as simple as possible.

Travel apps are a dime a dozen in today’s day and age. If you’re planning your first road trip and feeling overwhelmed by the number of options that are available, hopefully this blog will help you realize that it really doesn’t have to be that difficult!

Weather Apps

I am a big fan of keeping track of the weather when I’m traveling. These are the only two apps I use to check the radar and preview weather forecasts:

MyRadar

MyRadar has been my go-to weather app for nearly 10 years. I use it numerous times a day when traveling (and at home, too!) to check the radar. Overall, it’s been a pretty accurate weather app. I’ve only been caught in a few small rain storms over the years that didn’t make it onto the radar.

The MyRadar app features a TON of layer options. I use their wind, AQI (air quality index), hi-def radar, wildfires, and earthquake layers most often. There’s more than that available, but those are the features that I usually leave on.

You can pay for a membership if you want to remove the ads. However, I use the free version.

MyRadar App | Best Travel Apps
MyRadar’s Hi-Definition Radar, in addition to it’s option layers like wind, have been so helpful for me when checking the radar while on the road.

Apple Weather App

Since I use an iPhone, Apple’s Weather app is an easy, on-the-go resource for simple weather forecasting. Before a trip, I’ll save towns and cities I plan to visit in the app so that I can watch the weather forecast(s). I mostly check forecasted rain and temperatures with the Apple Weather app and then utilize MyRadar for a more accurate radar and rainfall forecast.

Route Planning Apps

One of the most popular questions I get asked is about route planning. There are a few different travel apps I use, and for different reasons. Full transparency: I don’t do much route planning from my phone. I prefer to use my laptop and find it much more efficient. I use the mobile app versions of the software to access all of my research and route plans once I hit the road.

Google Maps

Nearly every road trip I’ve taken was planned by sitting at a computer and plugging in routes on Google Maps. Here are a few ways I use Google Maps:

  • Route Planning: I love that you can drag the route around, get an estimated travel time, and add multiple points of interest.
  • Destination Research:  Most restaurants, businesses, and landmarks have a google listing, which makes it easy to read reviews, find hours of operation, and more.
  • Google Street View: I love to use this feature to preview roadways. It’s especially great if I’m looking for places to stop and take photos, or if I just want to get a preview of what a road may actually look like. There’s always the parking situation in big cities, too. (I’m only half joking).

Google Maps is the easiest route-planning tool available, in my opinion. 

If I want to keep a schedule based on my findings from Google Maps, I’ll form a Google Doc or Sheet with information available such as mileage and time between stops so that I can easily reference it when on-the-go.

>>> Read Next: Top Tips for finding the Best Places to Eat on a Road Trip

Google My Maps

Google’s My Maps feature is great for creating your own, saveable and shareable map. You may notice some of these maps embedded into my travel blogs

Google My Maps is a great tool if you want to plan a road trip with friends, thanks to its collaborative editing feature. Since you cannot use My Maps for guided navigation, this software is usually part of the “brainstorming” phase of my planning process. I’ll save a restaurant or point of interest, maybe a scenic byway, and then reference these maps when planning my actual trip out.

Apple Maps

As an iPhone user, Apple Maps is my go-to for on-the-go directions and route planning. I may use this to explore roadways and brainstorm future trips when I’m mindlessly scrolling on my phone. However, Apple Maps is not a major part of my route planning process. 

In 2024, Apple allowed for offline maps to be downloaded straight to your phone. While this isn’t a feature that I use often, it is beneficial to be able to use it without membership to any other apps!

Harley-Davidson App

I primarily use the H-D App to utilize their Rider Planner feature and share turn-by-turn ride routes with groups. This is especially helpful in situations where you may want to alternate who is leading the ride.

Motorcycle Route Planner | Travel Apps

First, I create all ride routes on the Ride Planner via my laptop. You can use physical addresses in addition to adding waypoints if needed. You can also upload GPX files. Once you have your route planned out, you can easily share a link with your friends which will allow them to save it to their app as well. 

You can learn more about the H-D App, here. You do not have to be a HOG Member to use the App, by the way!

REVER (PRO)

Rever is a popular motorcycle app for trip planning, ride tracking, and route planning. It features over 3,000 motorcycle ride routes worldwide (paved and unpaved). There is a PRO and Free version of the app.

If you want access to features such as offline maps, twisty road recommendations, turn-by-turn directions, and access to all Butler Maps, you’ll need the PRO Version.

For me, access to the digital Butler Map routes is enough to validate purchasing their PRO membership. I am a huge fan of the paper Butler Maps, so having access to all of them in REVER is great!

>>> If you’re old school and prefer to daydream about epic motorcycle roads and scenic byways, you can always purchase physical, premium paper maps from Butler.

OnX Offroad

If I’m planning any off-road riding on an adventure bike, I love using onX Offroad. Overall, OnX Offroad’s combination of comprehensive trail information, offline capabilities, public lands designations, user-friendly design, and community features makes it a powerful trip planning tool.

I utilize onX’s premium membership so that I can create and save multiple maps, read trail reports, download off line maps, use their 3D map feature, and view public land boundaries. You can view all pricing options and the tiered benefits on the onX website, here.

AllTrails

AllTrails is a GREAT app to use for more than just hiking trails. While I do use it for finding hiking trails, I also use the off-road trail reports that users have generated.  AllTrails features extensive community-based reviews. 

For those hesitant to plan a route due to weather conditions, such as early-season snowpack or perceived difficulty, consulting reviews and examining recent images can provide valuable insights into the current situation.

Here’s an example: After seeing this switchback road on Google Maps, I decided to search for the route, better known as Saxon Mountain Road, on AllTrails to see what conditions were like, in addition to if I had the skills to tackle it on my own. (Spoiler alert: I am not ready.)


Camping & Outdoor Recreation Apps

One of the most common questions that I’m asked is how I find campsites while traveling. If you’d like an extensive look into my process, you can read this blog. Below, I’ll explain how I use each app for motorcycle camping.

Dispersed Motorcycle Camping | Best Travel Apps
I’ve found many incredible dispersed camping areas thanks to my Dyrt Pro Membership!

The Dyrt (PRO)

The Dyrt is the #1 camping app in the USA and is my most used app when looking for camping. I’ve found some INCREDIBLE dispersed campsites thanks to my PRO Membership. Here are a few of my favorite features:

  • Access to 50,000+ established & dispersed campgrounds and reviews
  • Public Lands (BLM, USFS) and Cell phone coverage map layers
  • Offline Maps so that you can access them without cell service

If you want a free, one-month trial of the Dyrt Pro, click here, and use code RIDETOFOOD when signing up!

Recreation.gov

Oftentimes, National Parks and USFS campground reservations must be made through Recreation.gov. You might also need to utilize this app for timed entry permits for certain National Parks. Here are examples of when I’ve used the recreation.gov app:

  • Purchasing my Timed Entry Permit for Mount Blue Sky and Rocky Mountain National Park
  • Reserving a Campsite at the Chisos Basin Campground + Rio Grande Village in Big Bend National Park (Reservations had to be made on the app, and there was no cell signal in the park, so planning ahead was key!)
  • Reserving a USFS Campsite along Cottonwood Pass in Colorado.

Reserve America

Reserve America is very similar to Recreation.gov. It’s a popular software used by state park systems in various states, but you may also find privately owned campgrounds on this platform, too. You can make reservations from your laptop or mobile device.

HipCamp

I like to call HipCamp the Airbnb of camping apps. Campgrounds and lodging on HipCamp are all privately owned. You can book dispersed campsites, RV sites, treehouses, cabins, and glamping tents (including yurts and teepees) or cabins.  

HipCamp is a great app if you’re looking for unique glamping experiences for yourself, or for a group. Their tent camping options can be as bare bones as a patch of grass on someones land, or they can be as sophisticated as having showers available. Be sure to read the descriptions before booking.

KOA

Kampgrounds of America (also known as KOA) locations vary in pricing. However, sometimes you’ll find a great deal on tent camping or their rustic cabins. I don’t stay at KOA’s often, but there have been times when they’ve been an excellent and budget-friendly lodging option.

If you have your camping gear with you but are looking for a more structured lodging option for an evening, their “bring your own linens” cabins can be much more affordable than hotels. Plus, there are always showers available on site.

AllTrails

As mentioned previously, I use AllTrails for researching hiking trails, in addition to checking out off-road route reviews. AllTrails’ extensive trail database, detailed trail information, user reviews and photos, robust navigation and mapping features, and strong community aspect make it an excellent tool for hikers. 

Learn more about AllTrails and the premium version of the app, AllTrails+, here.

Lodging Travel Apps

Lodging apps mostly come down to personal preference. As a budget traveler, I tend to choose lodging based on rewards programs and overall pricing. Here’s a breakdown of each app I use when planning trips, and why: 

Booking.com

I primarily use Booking.com to book hotels and lodging. However, it’s one of the best all-in-one travel apps and booking platforms available. It offers hotels, flights, car rentals, experiences, and more. You also get rewards through their Genius program for anything you book. For lodging, I like that there are some unique stay options available, in addition to your typical hotels and motels.

Best Western

Since Best Western hotels are motorcycle-friendly, I’ve become inclined to book with them and utilize their rewards program. You can use their website or their mobile app to book and access reservations.

Hotels.com

The hotels.com app is best for people who choose to use Expedia‘s various travel apps, so that they can lock in to their OneKey universal rewards program. Hotels.com is similar to Booking.com but tends to have a slightly smaller database of lodging options to choose from. 

Unfortunately, when Hotels.com changed their rewards program a few years ago to the OneKey platform, I became less inclined to use their app. (I also lost a few rewards which left me a little salty). Nevertheless, it’s still a great app to use since you may be able to find a better deal if options are slim on other booking platforms.

Airbnb + VRBO

If you plan to travel with a group and want alternative lodging from the typical hotel or motel, Airbnb and VRBO are both great options. Since I typically travel solo and prefer to camp or stay in traditional lodging when I travel, I don’t use these apps often. However, when I travel in a group, we tend to book our lodging through these sites. Here are the key differences:

Airbnb caters to a wide range of travelers with diverse property types, including shared spaces (like rooms to rent), in addition to unique accommodations (such as treehouses). Airbnb also offers experiences that you can book through the app.

VRBO focuses primarily on whole-home rentals for families and groups.

Flight Booking and General Travel Apps

As many of you know, most of my road trips and travel plans don’t involve flying to a location to get my trip. Occasionally, I do fly in, rent a bike through EagleRider, and then take a road trip! Here are the travel apps I use for booking flights:

Southwest

I’m a loyal Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards member. I also use the Chase Rapid Rewards Credit Card, so I usually fly for free by using my Rapid Rewards points. (Woohoo!)

Southwest flies most places that I travel, and their flights are often very affordable in comparison to other airlines. Additionally, their checked bag policy (allowing your first two checked bags to fly free) is a big plus if you need to check anything. 

Other Airline Booking Apps

In the event that I do not travel with Southwest, I’ll check travel apps like Booking.com and Orbitz, for flights, or potentially book directly with another airline. I don’t travel internationally very often (yet!), so Southwest has worked well for me in most scenarios.

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Staci Wilt

I’m Staci: a freelance journalist, photographer, and marketing consultant. I primarily focus those skills around my passions of motorcycles, travel, and food…and yes, we will count margaritas and craft beer in that last category. Thanks for checking out my blog!
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