The cross country phase of training lets you step (or fly) outside the comfort zone of your home airport and experience landings and take-offs at other airports. You’ll make your first cross country with an instructor, then on your own in a solo flight. This exciting milestone brings you one step closer to finishing your training.
You cannot bring anyone with you on your solo flights. You also cannot act as pilot in command (PIC) of any flight carrying a pilot as a passenger until you earn your private, sport or recreational pilot certificate.
Two commonly used programs are SkyVector.com and AOPA's Internet Flight Planner. X-Plane is another excellent program. But learning how to plan your flight with maps and charts is still considered the “gold standard” and your instructor has an obligation to teach you this manual process.