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Let’s Drive: 4 essential iPhone apps for car owners

Running a car has never been more expensive, thanks to sky-high fuel prices and the increased cost of living. Car owners could use any help they can get, which is where these apps come in.

Each of these apps will give car owners a helping hand, whether it’s finding the best gas prices, planning out the ideal journey, or simply finding somewhere reasonable to park.

GasBuddy [Free]

GasBuddy helps you find the lowest price for gas in your vicinity using crowdsourced data and a constantly updating map. You can sort gas stations by price, location, and useful facilities like restrooms, and you can do your part by contributing to the accuracy and timeliness of those figures yourself. It’s also possible to grab a free GasBuddy card to make further savings, and even to enter a daily prize draw for a $100 gas card.

Parkopedia [Free]

Parkopedia isn’t the only app out there to help you find parking spaces, but it is one of the most widely supported – and thus most useful. With information on 70 million parking spaces across 15,000 cities around the world, the chances are it’s got you covered when you drive into a new town. You can get directions to the parking spot, see parking availability in real time, and even (in some instances) pay for your parking, all through the app. It’s your one stop shop for avoiding parking anxiety, wherever you are.

Waze [Free]

Apple Maps has come a long way, and Google Maps is both incredibly popular and remarkably feature-complete, but Waze goes the extra mile. Using crowdsourced information, it supplies the kind of live traffic information and warnings about road closures and speed traps that those well-funded rivals simply can’t match. You can even find the lowest gas prices along the way. Using Waze’s network of users, you’ll gain a level of insight into your chosen routes that can only come with a little local knowledge.

Roadtrippers [Free]

Roadtrippers goes well beyond your usual navigation app in offering a finely detailed road trip-planning tool. Set a destination (it currently supports the USA, Canada, New Zealand, and Australia), then plan visits to diners, points of interest, national parks, and amazing hotels along the way. Roadtrippers will get you to all of these places with its accomplished turn-by-turn navigation system, but in this case the journey matters just as much as the destination.