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With Christmas and New Years right around the corner, millions of people will be loading up their car for a holiday road trip. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, 91 percent of long-distance holiday travel is by personal vehicle.

Through the evolution of technology, the 21st century road trip is a vast improvement from the days of the license plate game and the family sing-along to the hits such as 99 Bottles and BINGO. To help keep you and your family entertained during your next road trip, here are a few of our “must-haves” gadgets and applications for the drive:

  • Before you hit the road plug your travel destination into Roadtrippers to help you plan out your itinerary. This Web-based app calculates mileage, travel time and fuel costs, taking the guesswork out of travel planning.
  • Anytime you’re behind the wheel, it’s crucial that you practice safe driving techniques, including avoiding your mobile phones. The LG Tones and Jabra FREEWAY are a couple of our favorite Bluetooth devices that can help you answer calls and listen/respond to text messages without taking your hands off the wheel.
  • Great tunes are an absolute must on any road trip, apps such as iHeartRadio, Groove and Songza will make sure you have only the best hits playing at all times without having to find new stations every 100 miles.
  • For the readers in the group, e-readers including the Kindle Paperwhite and Nook GlowLight are great options to keep the pages turning during daylight and long into the night. If you prefer audio books, the Audible app allows you to download the latest books straight to a mobile device and its subscription based-model will let you choose a new book every month.
  • With products such as Slingbox and Apple TV you can stream your favorite TV shows and movies directly to your smartphone or tablet. Download movies, access your DVR or watch live TV anywhere, anytime.

What are your favorite gadgets and applications for the car?