5 Must-Have Summer Apps + A Family Cell Phone Contract

I recently made the decision to upgrade Nick to a smartphone. He’ll tell you he’s the last teenager on the planet to finally carry a device that comes with a data plan and I’ll tell you how I was lucky to have a quarter for a pay phone when I was his age. The times have certainly changed and while I’m happy to provide Nick with something cooler than a flip phone, I’m also very clear about my expectations where his phone upgrade is concerned. For his Dad and I it means keeping an eye on data usage and a slight increase in our monthly bill and for Nick it means revisiting our Parent/Child Agreement and making sure we’re all on the same page when it comes to cell phone rules and guidelines. I highly recommend every parent do the same, whether it’s your child’s first device or an upgrade, it’s a really great idea to come up with a plan that will keep everyone in the family accountable.

One of the biggest reasons I chose this month to upgrade Nick’s phone is because we’re going into the summer months and I want him to have a more reliable phone to keep in touch with his friends over vacation while also enjoying some of his favorite apps on U.S. Cellular’s high-quality network. It truly gives me peace of mind to know that we can all benefit from such excellent coverage whether we’re at home, at work, or traveling someplace fun. While Nick’s favorite apps are probably not the same as the ones I use most often on my Samsung Galaxy S6 I’m okay with that as long as he responds to my text messages in a timely fashion. For me that means within 2 minutes, for him it usually means within 20 minutes. We should come up with a compromise and add that as one of the additional promises on our cell phone contract.

Since I mentioned summer can we all just take a moment to do a little happy dance and jump for joy that my favorite season is finally almost here? The winter was super brutal up here in the Northeast and we’ve totally earned a practically perfect summer. Cross your fingers for us, okay? Speaking of summer, I have a few apps to share that will help keep you organized while planning fun activities and sharing long-lasting memories during this most wonderful time of year. Don’t thank me, just send all the good sunshine vibes my way.

  1. Hipmunk is an app that searches several travel sites to help you find the very best deal when booking hotels and flights right from your mobile device.
  2. Google Calendar is a great app for organizing your family’s busy summer schedule in one handy place. It lets you sync calendars across several devices and push notifications will keep everyone on time for every appointment and family event. 
  3. The Yahoo Weather app is a wonderful way to stay on top of the weather so you can avoid getting caught in bad weather. It provides detailed info on wind, rain, sunrise and sunset and shares updates two times a day to prepare you for unexpected weather changes.
  4. The Snapseed app provides professional-level picture editing capabilities while being user-friendly when you take photos on your phone. Snapseed also lets you show off pictures via Facebook, Twitter, and email because we all love to share our photos, right?
  5. The Score app, which provides updates and scores from several leagues is a great way to follow your favorite teams even when you can’t watch a game on television.

What’s your favorite app to stay informed and organized during the summer months and all year long?

Disclosure: I’m a compensated member of the U.S. Cellular Blogger Brigade, but all thoughts are my own and I love sharing tips and tricks to make your favorite mobile device a little smarter.


  1. Snapseed is my favorite! I’ve always wanted to try Hipmunk. Think I’ll give it a try this summer!

    • Thanks for the tip, Erin. I think I might have to take a closer look at Snapseed. I can use all the help I can get when it comes to photo editing.

  2. Robin Rue (@massholemommy) says

    I love Hipmunk. I use it all the time.

  3. I really love Snapseed! I write about it for photography articles. And I’ve never tried Hipmunk!
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  4. I will have to check out these apps. I haven’t heard of them before and I love finding new apps!

  5. With the rate of Cell Phone Bills .. It’s important to be on some sort of plan to save as much as you can. All these Apps sound great ..and something i would like to try
    Lorane recently posted..Behind the Seams: Curt JavonMy Profile

  6. Wendy Kaufman says

    With cell phones it is important to et the best price possible on the phones and the service.

  7. Great list. I love using Hipmunk
    Debbie Denny recently posted..“Houston, we have a problem.” Apollo 13: 20th Anniversary Edition!My Profile

  8. I use Google Calendar all the time. I’d literally be lost without it! lol I’d like to check out the Snapseed app. It sounds like one I’d really like!
    Jessica Harlow recently posted..When you don’t finish the bottle, have fun with these wine stoppers! #mindbodyactiveMy Profile

  9. Haven’t heard of any of these apps but now I want to go try them.
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  10. TOo funny I just wrote an article today about the best educational apps for kids!!
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  11. Wendy Kaufman says

    One of the nice things about modern cell phones is the ability to get apps that specifically fit your needs, desires and lifestyle. It is good that you found these five apps that make you happy.

  12. Google Calendar would come in handy! I use just about everything else by Google! I need to check out Snapseed too!!

  13. I’m so bad about keeping up with the latest and best apps! thanks so much for the summer app suggestions!

  14. I can never get my google calendar app to work right on my iphone. my mac and ipad are great at syncing but the dang phone hates me 🙂 I will definitely need to check out the Hipmunk app though!
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  15. I basically use my calendar and notes for organization. I do check the weather app all the time.
    Heather D. (@GirlGoneMom) recently posted..Easy Chili Cheese Dog Recipe #HormelChiliNationMy Profile

  16. Our family loves to travel. I will have to check out Hipmunk, sounds really useful!

  17. Thanks for this list. Google Calendar looks like one I would use.

  18. This is a great list of apps. I love my Google Calendar so much
    Mykidsguide recently posted..Super Stylish Mix & Match Teen Fashion for SummerMy Profile

  19. Great list!
    There were a couple on your list I haven’t heard of so I will have to check them out.
    I love the garmin app on my iPhone.
    The map function is top notch.
    I use google calendar… Otherwise we would be flying blind!

  20. The Score is a app I know my hubby would enjoy. Sharing your information with him. He is always keeping track of his favorite teams.
    Debbie L. recently posted..Tweet to Help Feed the Dogs & Cats at Silver RescueMy Profile

  21. I don’t really use any apps for organizational purposes (though I probably should!) I use apps more for creative means, like editing and adding text to photos. I’m going to check out that Hipmunk app! I’ve heard good things about it. By the way… I’m considering switching over to a Samsung phone. [gasp]
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    • You distracted with that last sentence about the, what was it? Samsung phone? Do it! I swear you’ll wonder what took you so long. 😉

  22. Google Calendar keeps me sane! I add everyone sports and extracurricular activities to it. And, I program the alerts so I do not forget! One of my favorites is My Weather Concierge – gives up to the minute local forecasts.
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  23. I think my daughter felt the same way when she was a teen. Now that she is older, she can pay for her own phone! I love all of these apps and will pass them on to my friends.
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  24. I really need to start utilizing Google Calendar. I haven’t heard of some of these apps, but I need to check them out. Anything to make life easier!
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  25. Where have I been, hiding under a rock? I need to make sure I download these apps soon, they all are very useful.
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  26. Snapseed is such a cool app. It has so many editing functions to make your phone photos look professional in a hurry.

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