Get ready for winter with driving apps that’ll keep your car on the road as the nights and weather close in…
Pre-load your smartphone with essential apps for winter driving
Winter is coming, so there’s no better time to pre-load your smartphone with the apps you’ll need to keep your car moving as you head to the airport.
Follow our guide to essential winter driving apps.
Hands-Free Traffic Talker
Traffic news straight to your ears
What is it: Provided in association with the Highways Agency, the Hand-Free Traffic Talker app will automatically keep you updated with traffic problems as you head towards them. You set how many miles radius you want alerts for. No need to register an account, simply turn it on and let your phone’s built-in GPS tech stream relevant traffic problems direct to your car. You won’t need to be distracted by checking your phone, either – the alerts are automatically spoken as you drive. The app will stream notifications of problems on motorways and major A-roads throughout England. It will also broadcast alerts and updates on earlier issues. How much: Free Get it for Android and iOS
Battery Doctor… Extend your phone’s battery life
Keep your battery full of juice
What is it: Staying in touch is important when heading out in poor driving conditions, so always ensure your phone if fully charged. Most people will have a phone charger, but one of the big problems associated with cold weather is a flat battery – so charging your phone won’t be an option. However, downloading an app such as Battery Doctor will help keep your device powered-up for longer. It ensures your handset gets a proper, full charge when your top it up with a unique three-cycle system. It also has a task killer that stops power-sapping apps that drain power while not in use. Must-have for winter driving. How much: Free Get it here for Android Get it for iPhone
Gaugemap.co.uk… flood map
Are rivers about to flood on your route?
What is it: As we’ve seen in the UK, flash floods can cause big problems for motorists. However, drivers can help avoid the risk of being caught out by logging on to Gaugemap.co.uk and using the interactive map to search for rivers on their planned journey. Amazingly, motorists can then follow the individual rivers on Twitter and receive live updates on river levels and flood risks as they drive. Make friends with rivers on your route whenever you travel. How much: Free Get it for you your phone: Go to www.gaugemap.co.uk then follow rivers on your Twitter app.
Red Cross First Aid
First aid if the worst should happen
Bad weather and darker evenings can increase the chance of being injured in a road accident, but would you know how to help in the event of an accident? This app features simple, easy advice on everyday first aid scenarios as well as how to prepare for emergencies from severe winter weather to road traffic accidents. Use the videos and step-by-step guides to help you stay safe and help others. The information is all hosted locally, so you won’t need an internet connection to access it in the event of an emergency. How much: Free Get it here for Android and iOS
Fill That Hole… pothole reporting
Kill potholes on your route
What is it: Like eruptions on the face of a hormonal teenager, the winter scourge of potholes will soon be scarring the UK’s highways and byways while simultaneously attacking wheels and suspension throughout the nation. Download this app and help ensure that others stay safe and that the relevant authority is made aware of the defect – forcing it to act. You can also use the app to see if the pothole that damaged your car had already been reported – meaning you could be entitled to compensation. The app lets you take photos, get a GPS fix on the hole’s location and automatically send a report to the responsible authority. How much: Free Get it here for iPhone
Staysafe Tracker… make sure someone knows where you are
Let someone track your progress
What is it: Heading out on a road trip in winter weather, then this GPS tracker app will ensure that a family member or friend can keep an eye on your progress to make sure you’ve not hit problems. From breaking down or being trapped by a flood in remote locations, this app will help alert others to your predicament – even when you don’t have a phone signal. The tracker uses separate GPS technology. It will automatically email or text your location to an ‘emergency’ contact (defined by you) if you fail to check-in as expected. An exact GPS location will be provided so that you can be instantly located. How much: £4.99 Get it here for Android
Sunrise and Sunset app
Plan your trip around danger times
What is it: Driving during sunrise and sunset can be the most dangerous times to be on the road. The transition from autumn to winter has been identified as one of the riskiest periods, with blinding sunsets and poor light contributing to 3000 accidents and 36 deaths each year in the UK. The AA also points out that the rate of head-on crashes involving lorries nearly quadruples in twilight conditions.This app gives exact times of sunset and sunrise in locations of your choice. Get information on any date of year. A great preventative tool that really can make your driving easier and safer. How much: £free Get it here for iPhone Get alternative app here for Android
What Gas… fuel finder and prices
Don’t run out of fuel again
What is it: Running out of fuel in winter can be extremely dangerous as temperatures plummet – which is why you should fill-up your app arsenal with the What Gas fuel finder. Use the app to find the nearest petrol stations selling petrol, diesel, and LPG. No more panic as the needle nudges zero. How much: £free Get it here for Android Get it here for iOS
Emergency phone charging
You smartphone is a vital piece of kit for any driver heading out in extreme weather conditions, so you need to make sure it remains charged at all time. Relying on your car battery to keep it topped-up is can be risky – cold weather and component failure can often result in it going flat. Don’t risk being left without a power source for your phone – check out our alternative charging options here.