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Family life can be hectic, especially for parents who are juggling work, children, extracurricular activities, doctor appointments, birthday parties, etc. In fact, sometimes it can be downright overwhelming to have so many balls up in the air at once. To help with this seemingly impossible juggling act, many parents turn to family organizer apps.
Family organization apps are just what they sound like: apps to help you organize the many moving parts of your family life. The basic, most crucial component of any family organizer is the shared family calendar app, which allows everyone in the family to see everyone else’s schedule. Using these apps you can schedule:
your work hours
grocery shopping trips
kids’ soccer games
so much more
They can also include birthdays, anniversaries, and other important special events and avoid the embarrassment and horror of a forgotten milestone.
In short, with a shared calendar, every family member can know where the others are at any given moment.
Once you share calendars that can be seen by everyone, there are extras that you might look for in a family organizer app. Some parents want an app that includes shopping lists, meal planning, and chore division — and there are plenty of apps that offer that.
Other parents are looking for the best family locator app, which admittedly, is more rare. Family locators don’t only provide a shared calendar, but they actually provide location tracking, so parents can check on their kids when they’re out of the house. While not every family organizer comes with that option, there are several that do.
And still other parents want an organizer that can become a hub where family members communicate and share photos and videos. And you guessed it, there are several apps that offer these additional features too.
Ultimately, the features you need will help you decide which is the best daily organizer app for you. With so many high-quality options, the hardest part will be choosing which one you want. Once you choose, using it will be a piece of cake. The one thing that can be said for all the top 10 family organizers is that they are designed to be user-friendly. After all, the entire point is to make your life easier, not harder.
Cozi, launched in 2005, is one of the most veteran and reputable names in family organizing apps. It boasts many easy-to-use features such as a calendar, shopping lists, to-do lists, a recipe box, and a family journal. With Cozi, there is one account for the entire family and everyone signs in with their own individual email address. Cozi is ideal for keeping busy families updated about each other’s schedules, making sure all chores are completed, and tracking school events and virtual class schedules. Cozi also provides easy family management with a great color coding system. If you're looking for the best shared calendar app for families, this may be it.
TimeTree allows you to share your plans with others and make plans in a collaborative setting. Every event you schedule has its own chat room, so if you’re planning a family trip and trying to decide on an itinerary, the entire discussion can take place in the event’s chat room. Family members can also upload pictures of events to the app, creating a space for family memories.
Flayk is an ad-free family organizer that, in its most basic form, offers a calendar, event organizer, and collaborative to-do lists. Its more advanced coordination tools include sharing family events with multiple families and a rewards system that allows parents to give incentives for chores completed by family members.
OurHome is a goal-oriented app whose focus isn’t so much on organization but on task completion. Of course, OurHome does come with a calendar, but its main goal is to get family members to complete their tasks. The free app uses a gamified approach to motivate kids to get things done. As the person setting the tasks, you can track progress, set reminders and send them out, and even penalize if something hasn’t been done.
FamilyWall is a comprehensive family organizer that aims to keep every member of the family on the same page. The app offers a color-coded family calendar, a gallery for photos and videos, to-do list management, meal planning, and grocery list tracking. It also comes with two nifty features: a real-time locator of any family member when they are outside, and Safe Zone Alerts that notify parents when a child reaches school, home, or any other destination.
Family Organizer by Picniic is a one-stop shop for families who want to share a calendar, grocery lists, meal planner, general information, and more. There is also a Family Locator so parents can track their children when they’re not at home and get notified when their kids reach home. Some of the features offered by Picniic are a step-up from its competitors. For example, the meal planner provides recipes of popular family meals and then adds ingredients directly to your shopping list. Picniic also offers an encrypted Info Locker where parents can store important information, such as insurance, medical, and emergency contacts. It also comes with a secure VPN so parents can manage their kids’ internet habits.
Hub integrates seamlessly with many other calendars, and zero setup is required. It just happens automatically. Other than that, it offers the standard group of features that you’d expect to see in a family organizer: shared calendar, shared grocery, shopping, and to-do lists, and communication tools like messages, notes, and photos.
FabFam offers straightforward calendar sharing, shopping lists, and to-do lists. The standout feature is called a Shared Keychain, which allows you to store all your membership and loyalty cards in one place. This way, the whole family can use them whenever they make a purchase and maximize points/savings.
While Google Calendar may not be as comprehensive as some of the other options, it’s still one of the most popular scheduling and calendar apps for families due to its ease of use. If you’re one of the 1.5 billion people that have a Gmail account, you understand how convenient Google Calendar is, from scheduling one-off appointments, recurring appointments, and inviting others to events. You can also create multiple calendars, including a Google Family Calendar, and look at one or all simultaneously.
Any.do is a productivity tool that allows you to record appointments, schedule events, and create to do lists and shopping lists. Reminders are built-in so you don’t have to worry about forgetting something on your calendar. Whenever you schedule an event, appointment, or want to create a shopping list, you can share with your family members so that they can be in the loop. Any.do syncs across all devices, including iPhone and Android. The best part is that Any.do works with Alexa and Siri. Which means all you need to do is say, “Alexa, add bread to my shopping list,” and it will be added.
There’s a reason there are so many family organizer apps on the market — families need them to stay organized and be synced when it comes to the family schedule.
Parents often feel like they’re going crazy juggling multiple responsibilities and schedules, but a family organizer app can provide much-needed assistance. If you have the option of staying on top of your game or feeling like you’re about to lose it, which will you choose?