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Dublin: 16 °C Friday 20 September, 2019

8 apps every driver needs at their fingertips to make life easier

These nifty tools will take the tension out of every trip.

shutterstock_499754806 Source: Shutterstock/Casezy idea

WHETHER IT’S THE ability to pay for tolls and parking from your phone, find the cheapest petrol or avoid a standstill route, checking particular apps before you set off can not only save you money but let you arrive just a little bit happier.

Here are the apps you need at your fingertips that will take any tension out of any trip, so you can just sit back and enjoy driving.

1. Find your way without relying on 3G

Always seem to find that Google Maps loses coverage at the exact moment you’ve realised that you took a wrong turn? Enter Navmii (free), a community-based navigation and traffic app that’s already used by over 24 million drivers in more than 185 countries. It gives turn-by-turn voice-guided navigation, along with reactive traffic, speeding, hazard and safety camera alerts, and works without internet connection.

2. Pay for tolls without having to search for change

unnamed Source: eFlow

Every driver has at some point in their lives experienced the sinking feeling as you rapidly approach a toll and realise you have no change close to hand. With the M50 Quick Pay app (free) you have until 8pm the next day to login and pay with just a scan of your card, something that is a lot more simple to do once you actually reach your destination – and it takes less than a minute to do.

3. Find the cheapest petrol around

Petrol prices can vary wildly throughout the country, and you don’t want to have no choice but to pull into one of the most expensive garages. Pumps.ie (free) compares petrol and diesel prices around Ireland, allowing you to save stations to your watchlist to easily lookup local prices.

4. Get through entire books on long journeys

Love books but not all that great at reading them? It’s especially hard when you commute in a car to find the time to get through them. Audible (€9/month) has over 200,000 titles read by people like Eddie Redmayne, Stephen Fry and James Franco, making long journeys exponentially more entertaining.

5. Check out the traffic before you get into your car

shutterstock_585566699 Source: Shutterstock/abd

Frequently seem to end up in the slowest traffic jam in Dublin? Dublin Traffic (€1.09) allows you to view up-to-date traffic cameras around the county from motorways to city streets, giving you a snapshot of current traffic conditions. It also has a latest news tab with traffic reports around Ireland of any incidents that may affect traffic in your area.

6. Pay for parking while walking to your destination

Whether you’re patting underneath your seat to locate loose change or have circled the block trying to find a parking metre, paying for parking can be a total pain. Luckily for those who live in select areas in Dublin, Wicklow and Laois, ParkingTag (free) allows drivers to easily pay for and top up parking from their phones instead.

7. Keep tabs on your car’s health

elijah-lane-153949 Source: Unsplash

A little guilty of ignoring the ‘check engine’ light? Fixd (free, but requires an accessory that costs €53) provides a nifty gadget that is plugged into your dash and constantly monitors your car’s health, giving the severity of a problem and how it will effect the car. Meanwhile the app can monitor multiple cars, and checkups based on the distance you’ve driven.

8. Get up to speed on road rules for your holidays

Have a summer holiday planned but not entirely up to scratch on the rules of the road in your chosen destination? GoingAbroad (free) is a really handy app that covers everything from speed limits, seat belts, traffic lights to rules regarding drugs, alcohol and forbidden lanes. Brush up before you jet off.

The M50 Quick Pay App (available on both Google Play and the App Store) is an incredibly handy app from eFlow, Ireland’s leading tolling solutions provider. The deadline to pay for the M50 toll is before 8pm the day after you travel through but you can also prepay before you travel. Just open the app and enter your vehicle registration number, select how many tolls you want to pay for and pop in your payment details (using the card scan option if you wish).

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