Are you taking a road trip or have a long flight for this year’s vacation? Use the hours on the road or in the air listening to audiobooks on your favorite subjects, or to catch up on books you haven’t had time to read. There are numerous audiobook apps available for your smartphone or tablet that catching up won’t be hard to do. The big question is, which one do you choose? Read on to learn about a few of my favorite audio book apps for your next family vacation.
This is my go-to audio book app and the one I have recommended to my friends. This is an app from Amazon and if you want to give it a try, they do have a 30-day free trial where you can listen to a book of your choice. After the free trial, there is a monthly charge of $14.95. Once paid you will receive 1 credit to use for getting new books. I try to maximize my credits by using them for books that cost more than my monthly subscription fee. I have purchased my favorite spy thrillers, self-help books, and the latest book releases. The selection of books is huge which makes it easy to find something regardless of what interests you.
And if that wasn’t enough, each month, members get two free Audible Originals to download. These aren’t popular audiobooks, but I have found I enjoy them just as much as the books I have purchased.
Tip: Maybe you download something that interests you and your spouse, so when the kids have their headphones in you can listen to an audio book together.
If you are like I was, you thought Kindle was only good for downloading books to read, right? Well, I learned something the other day. After purchasing a book, I was given the option of also purchasing the audio version at a very low cost without having to have a subscription. And the best part, I can switch between reading the book and the app and not lose my place, which I find very convenient. If I’m engrossed in a book and have to get in the car to run an errand, I can continue my book from where I left off. How convenient is that?
If you have a library card, you can start using Libby immediately. Libby is a free app that you can use to browse through its library, just like you would when you visit your local one. To do so, all you need to do is enter your library card number. If you don’t have a library card from your local library yet, don’t worry, they are easy and quick to get. Once you have it, you can start borrowing books from Libby right away.
Because Libby is linked to your local library network, they may not have as many audiobooks as other apps, but the major benefit of Libby is that you will not pay a monthly fee. With a Libby account, you can have 10 audiobooks out at one time and you can borrow that audiobook for a 14 day period, just like if you were borrowing from your local library. If you find that 14 days isn’t enough time, you can extend your time as long as there isn’t anyone else waiting for that audiobook.
I think this is a perfect app for families with children who each have their own library cards. They can borrow the books they want without tying up the 10 books on your account. So on road trips, they too can listen to books or stories that interest them.
If you want to buy audiobooks but you don’t want to pay for a subscription, Google Play Books is your answer. With this app, you purchase each audiobook and have it immediately available on your device. Don’t worry if you have Apple devices, Google Play Books for IOS is available.
Just like with kindle, audiobooks in your Google Play Books library sync between your devices. If you start an audiobook at home and you’re really enjoying it, you’ll be able to pick up right where you left off when you’re in your car heading to your next destination.
This app follows the subscription format like Audible but costs less at $9.99 per month. You do get a free trial and you can pick one audiobook for free during your trial.
Kobo, along with the other apps, allows you to slow down or speed up the narration depending on your preference with a few simple clicks on your device. You can also check to see how much time is left in the chapter you’re listening to or how much time is left in the audiobook in general. If you time it just right, you may finish your book at the same time you reach your destination.
Your subscription gets you one book of your choice per month, although the selection may not be as extensive as Audible. Prices for a la carte audiobooks on Kobo range from a few dollars to around $21 for best selling titles and new releases. There is something for everyone regardless of your budget. Just like with Audible, Kobo provides customized recommendations for new titles once it learns your preferences. This helps you discover different audiobooks all within the same trip.