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Best way to get a GPS?

kamumma1

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We were just recently in FL and rented a car via Priceline. We got a good deal on the car, but when my DH went to pick it up, he asked if the car had a GPS. The woman behind said some cars do and some don't. He said we definately wanted one, so we paid approx $54 and got a GPS for the week. However, the last time we rented a car, we didn't ask for one and it came with it - w/ no additional fee. My question is, what's the best (free) way to get a GPS in a rental car? Do they usually have them these days w/o asking? Or is it a gamble. Should we just get the car they give us and then ask if we don't get one?
 

Talent312

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IMHO, the best way to be sure that you'll have use of a GPS unit in a rental car w/o additional fee is to buy your own... a portable GPS that is. I have a Garmin-Nuvi 720 sitting on a table by my front door and use it frequently.

Some are relatively inexpensive, the better ones may set you back ~$150 or so; however, you will have use of it 100% on the time and not just in your rental car.
 

Luanne

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I agree. Buy your own. That way you'll always have it, and over time it will pay for itself. :D
 

sfwilshire

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I use my GPS far more on travel than I do around home. I put it in a small makeup case (rather than buying something specific for it) and it fits nicely in my purse.

Sheila
 

Talent312

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I use my GPS far more on travel than I do around home....
It was incredibly useful in driving between my hotel in White Plains, NY, and Lincoln Center in the City.
HOWEVER, its proven its worth locally in finding my wife's bosses' houses when we're invited for dinner!
 
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liborn2

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Count me in too..buy your own..I found a cheap one on sale in Delaware, one of my trips back from Ocean City MD..paid no tax, saved more money...It goes where I go.. and the best thing about it..I know how to use it..I understand the directions it gives..whenever you get into a rental car,..its like GPS 101..and on vacation who needs that, timesharing people like the comfort of home on vacation..just bring it along. Good Luck.
 

sfwilshire

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The funny thing when traveling is that I forget to check with my fellow business travelers. Not long ago, three of the four of us brought our GPSs. It was pretty comical.

We were meeting our boss at a location only she had been to. We drove right to it. She got lost three times before she found it.

Sheila
 

kamumma1

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Good idea. And with Christmas coming, I think DH may be getting a new toy.
 

Talent312

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pcgirl54

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And you can preprogram places you want to go (restaurants/attractionss)on vacation before you even travel. I bought DH one for his birthday 3 years ago. He loves it. It also has taken all the anxiety out of not knowing where you are because he can hit the "take me home" link. So we always add the resort where we are going to stay in case we are lost.

We are thinking of buying this as a gift for our sons this Christmas.
 

Kenrabs

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They are a must have when travelling. Just remember when you use your own to take everything with you when returning. I told my wife to grab the GPS as we left the car and I grabbed the bags and got the rental receipt. When we arrived in Boston and I asked her for it she handed me the GPS but not the window mount. Always double check. I told her she has to hold it to replace the mount...... Oh by the way, I'm the WIFE and my DH left this window open accidentally and yes, I read it..I admit it was pretty funny when he did ask me for the mounting bracket and then I realized ..OOOOPS... oh well if that's all I forgot I'm doing pretty good!!!
 
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Luanne

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They are a must have when travelling. Just remember when you use your own to take everything with you when returning. I told my wife to grab the GPS as we left the car and I grabbed the bags and got the rental receipt. When we arrived in Boston and I asked her for it she handed me the GPS but not the window mount. Always double check. I told her she has to hold it to replace the mount.
Have you ever thought that a case to carry all the parts might be a good idea. ;)
 

Talent312

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Have you ever thought that a case to carry all the parts might be a good idea. ;)
Plastic zip-lock bags work quite well for this purpose.
As they do for cell phone chargers, CD's, DVD's, etc.
 

Talent312

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nightnurse613

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I agree with everything that's been said however, be aware that MOST of them require an additional fee to acquire yearly upgraded maps-generally between $60-$100 dollars. :crash: Although it's not absolutely necessary to upgrade in MOST cases. :confused:
 

Luanne

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I agree with everything that's been said however, be aware that MOST of them require an additional fee to acquire yearly upgraded maps-generally between $60-$100 dollars. :crash: Although it's not absolutely necessary to upgrade in MOST cases. :confused:
That's the same with the GPS that come in cars. So far we haven't updated the maps in our portable GPS. Sometimes it can be really funny, like when the roads have changed, it looks like you're driving through open space and the GPS keeps yelling advising you to get back on route.
 

Talent312

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That's the same with the GPS that come in cars. So far we haven't updated the maps in our portable GPS. Sometimes it can be really funny, like when the roads have changed, it looks like you're driving through open space and the GPS keeps yelling advising you to get back on route.
I suggest updating only once every three years. Major routes don't change all that much from year to year, m. In my experience, annual changes are usually fairly minor, consisting of new housing developments or arterial extensions.

A funny experience was in a rental car in Germany. It may have spoken English, but I could not figure out how to reset it or turn it off. So it kept instructing me in German to turn around and return to the airport (or so I guessed). I finally just turned the volume down.
 

Sherry

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What about cell phone service

My cell phone provides a service for GPS navigation.. it talks to you. If you dont use it all the time, you can download it for 24 hours for like $2.99.
 

Talent312

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My cell phone provides a service for GPS navigation.. it talks to you. If you dont use it all the time, you can download it for 24 hours for like $2.99.
So do real GPS units. IMHO, relying on a cell phone for GPS service is kind'a silly.

GPS units have substantially larger, scalable screens with a selectable viewpoints, which one can actually read while driving, a variety of routing options, store a great number of proximity-points, can be mounted on a windshield or dash, and won't lose signals in "dead zones." I 'spose it has some utility, but cell phones do not come close to the more robust features and flexibility of full-fledged units.
 
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