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T+L's Top Travel Websites of 2009

200911-a-travel-websites

Photo: John Pirman

Car Travel

Save Money on Gas

gasbuddy.com

Click Factor: Reported and updated by regular drivers, the site lists stations and their gas prices (for all fuel grades, including diesel) by state, city, or ZIP code. The interactive Trip Cost Calculator helps drivers plot their route according to which places have the best fuel prices for their vehicle type.

Drawback: Because of its dependence on “real people” to report prices, coverage can be spotty.

Runners-up: gasprices.net and gasprices.mapquest.com.

Navigate the Roads

google.com/maps

Click Factor: Google Maps remains hands-down the most functional and accurate mapping tool on the Web: just type in an address and get a location or driving directions. Even better, use the My Maps tool, which lets you customize maps with virtual tacks to note the places you want to stop along the way—great for long road trips. Google’s Street View feature, a 360-degree, eye-level view of the street, gets better every day, and you can find it on Google’s Android platform and Apple’s iPhone.

Drawback: Bear in mind that for developing countries, you’ll find major arteries, but sometimes not specific addresses.

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