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 > RV navigation (Device or app)

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blaczero

USA

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Posted: 12/01/20 06:16am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks everyone for the responses. I am not a full timer so I'll skip the dedicated device.

Although there is an app call Sygic that may be decent, checking that out. Might be a google map overlay...

eldel

Northern Colorado

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Posted: 12/01/20 08:32am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I wouldn't bother with the CoPilot app. I tried it - it doesn't know about state parks in it's search. When you put in the absolute reference it can find it and name it. Even then it mis-routed me down a dirt track that wasn't even the shortest route.

Needless to say I didn't bother to pay for it once the free demo time was up.

Remember that you can download the maps for Google maps before you leave - so it still works out in the boonies where there's little or no cell data coverage.

MSchu

Texas

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Posted: 12/01/20 08:45am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I've always just used my old garmin gps and maps on my phone. It always has worked fine, except for the last few miles into or out of an out of the way campground. Most state parks and scenic areas are off on some small country roads, and occasionally the map will try to send you down some gravel road "shortcut". I usually try to check out the route the night before to avoid any surprises

afidel

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Posted: 12/02/20 12:43am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Waze for direction, Google maps for navigating (ie finding gas stations, restaurants, etc while on the trip). Rvtripwizard or Furkot for planning the trip.

The one time I wish I had had the RV specific app was getting from CT to the marina in Jersey City. The only reasonable way to do that and stay legal is to take the upper deck of the GWB (propane restrictions on all other tunnels and bridges) and avoid all parkways. Google maps was trying to fight me every step of the way which added to an already fairly stressful drive.

The RV safe map bundled with RVLife app I found to be too frustrating so I don't use it even though I'm already paying for it with trip wizard. I probably will the next time I find myself in the NYC area, but otherwise I don't sweat it too much, it probably helps that I'm only 11' 2" tall which fits almost anywhere that's not super obvious.


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Lantley

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Posted: 12/02/20 04:56am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Note all of those using google maps or one of the generic apps. that mention having a problem with a bridge, small curvy road or dirt road. etc..
That is the exact reason not to use those apps and get a dedicated device.
Yes in each case they survived, but there as certainly angst an aggravation that could have been avoided with better guidance. Google maps is not going to send you off a cliff, but it will as noted lead you to a low clearance or other road that is not RV friendly.
For the record never trust any GPS or app 100% when driving a large RV. Especially if you are towing. Turning around is often not a simple option.
There are better choices than google maps and the generic apps.
I use a dedicated RV GPS. For the most part it works and keeps me on bigger roads. A gain not 100% foolproof but close . Much better than generic apps that are not even trying to find RV friendly routes.
As mentioned those relying on google maps are experiencing issues as noted above.
If you want a more reliable method get a RV dedicated device, if you want to gamble a bit use generic apps.


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Gdetrailer

PA

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Posted: 12/02/20 08:49am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Lantley wrote:

Note all of those using google maps or one of the generic apps. that mention having a problem with a bridge, small curvy road or dirt road. etc..
That is the exact reason not to use those apps and get a dedicated device.


Actually, you have just made a great argument to use PAPER MAPS.

If the road is too small, it simply does not show on paper maps, make getting on too small of a road a lot harder to do when you do not have that info there..

Then as you get closer to your destination, you use the ROAD SIGNS, YES, there is such a thing as road signs..

Get closer yet and you use the ADDRESSES of the place you seek.

Believe it or not, you CAN get from one location to another all without GPS if you use a few paper maps and your knowledge.

Folks are so highly dependent on GPS now days, they couldn't find their way to their fridge without it..

valhalla360

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Posted: 12/02/20 02:22pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Gdetrailer wrote:

Lantley wrote:

Note all of those using google maps or one of the generic apps. that mention having a problem with a bridge, small curvy road or dirt road. etc..
That is the exact reason not to use those apps and get a dedicated device.


Actually, you have just made a great argument to use PAPER MAPS.

If the road is too small, it simply does not show on paper maps, make getting on too small of a road a lot harder to do when you do not have that info there..

Then as you get closer to your destination, you use the ROAD SIGNS, YES, there is such a thing as road signs..

Get closer yet and you use the ADDRESSES of the place you seek.

Believe it or not, you CAN get from one location to another all without GPS if you use a few paper maps and your knowledge.

Folks are so highly dependent on GPS now days, they couldn't find their way to their fridge without it..


Assuming you preplan your route, no reason to be surprised by small roads.

If things look marginal, it's easy to open streetview and see what it really looks like.

As you say, paper maps often don't show minor roads and unless they are new, they often miss entire freeways and interchanges. They certainly don't provide lane by lane recommendations thru complex areas.

Honestly only once was I routed via a marginal route and an RV dedicated system likely wouldn't have solved it because it wasn't an overhead clearance issue. If you are really worried about that stick to Interstate and US routes. Overhead clearance is really an overstated concern unless you drive blindly following the GPS directions.


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Gdetrailer

PA

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Posted: 12/02/20 03:09pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

valhalla360 wrote:

Overhead clearance is really an overstated concern unless you drive blindly following the GPS directions.


Most folks can't even quit looking at their phones while driving.

They can't do anything without some electronic device TELLING them what to do or how to do.

Heck, I am waiting to some time soon read in the news of someone playing games using a virtual headset while driving.. It IS that bad. Just watch folks walking at a mall, a store or even walking down a sidewalk.. They can't take their gaze off of their phone screens..

GPS is a nice tool in the toolbox but it should never be the sole tool, it can and does make mistakes and one must use some knowledge and understanding to ensure it isn't leading you the wrong way.

ALWAYS "preplan" your trip, review the trip on a map.

Mapquest and Google maps online can be used to map out your route BEFORE you leave, their maps are just as current or even more up to date than any GPS map. Mapquest and Google maps can also give you turn by turn directions which you can save for your trip..

Then you simply follow the roads and road signs (hence the problem with folks not being able to quit looking at their phone texts)..

We tried the Tablet GPS thing a couple of times, found it clunky, found it was slow and found that it was often incorrect or inaccurate. GPS just isn't for us.

valhalla360

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Posted: 12/03/20 04:14am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Gdetrailer wrote:

valhalla360 wrote:

Overhead clearance is really an overstated concern unless you drive blindly following the GPS directions.


Most folks can't even quit looking at their phones while driving.

........

We tried the Tablet GPS thing a couple of times, found it clunky, found it was slow and found that it was often incorrect or inaccurate. GPS just isn't for us.


And back in your day, did you walk up hill both ways in the snow to school?

If you found it clunky, that probably means you tried it 10-15yrs ago.

You don't have to use a navigation system but it's a massive improvement over paper maps and watching the road signs.

troubledwaters

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Posted: 12/03/20 08:46am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

My navigation system advises me a half mile before the road I need to turn onto comes up; try doing that by watching road signs. "OOOOOOOPPPPPPPSSSS, that was the road we wanted to turn on honey!"

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