The Gypsy in My CarPosted by in Travel
We refer to our GPS as Gypsy. When Gypsy first joined our family, I was resentful of her. Was my map reading and navigating not good enough? Soon I learned to love her, and we rely heavily on our GPS whenever we go somewhere unfamiliar. We started with a GPS that sat on the dash, but now use apps on our phones.
We often find that Gypsy is not completely trustworthy. There was the time we were driving home from a vacation and she had us circling in a residential neighborhood in Pennsylvania, in an endless loop. Then there was the time she thought the best way to get home from another trip was via slow and windy backroads – for 3 hours – when there was an interstate nearby. Then there are the times when we’re driving along and she thinks we are not on actual road.
Lately I was ready to toss her out the window when she could not find a street I needed to go to. It didn’t exist, according to her.
I’m not alone apparently. Michelin recently did a survey and found that 63% of Americans who use a GPS say it has led them astray at least once. Most drivers say it’s been wrong 4.4 times. 7% of users say it’s misdirected them more than 10 times.
Whenever we are traveling, I always make sure I have a back up map because I don’t feel I can completely trust the GPS not to get us lost. The other issue with a phone app is that if we lose our signal, the GPS is lost also. A backup map is still necessary in my mind.
What are your experiences with the GPS? Do you bring a backup map?
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I find my GPS is a bit like a microwave. Not perfect but once you use one, you become quite dependent…
For the most part, I love using my GPS. On occasion, it sends me in circles. The online map programs, also, have sent me into walls. Oh well – it sure beats trying to read a map!!!
When they work, they are fantastic!
Hate my GPS. It always says “house number does not exist.” Huh? I’m typing in a REAL address, and it’s denying me…Bah.
The only GPS I have is the one built into my iPhone. It’s definitely helped when we’ve gotten off-track in our local travels. I mostly just enjoy seeing the little dot on my phone move as our car moves.
Yes! I like that too!
I usually bring a backup map on long trips, but for short drives I hardly ever do. That is not to say that I’ve never been led astray by a GPS, but usually between the multiple apps available, I can find my way.
I don’t use a map for anything local either. I do worry about being on vacation and suddenly not being able to get a signal, in which case you are then completely lost!