For years, RVers have relied on expensive RV-specific GPS devices to get us to our destination safely. Whether built-in to the RV or purchased aftermarket, base model or elaborate tablet design, RV-specific GPS units have some real downsides.
Units from Garmin and Rand McNally are great right out of the box, assuming you don’t have an issue with the high price. Keeping them updated can be a challenge, and you are typically stuck within their eco-system, seeing only what they want you to see. Importing trips and other data into these devices from third-party sources can range from tedious to impossible.
In some models, annual map updates may be included. However, many are not and add to the original cost with an annual fee. Built-in RV GPS can be difficult to update and often requires a separate SD card or cable. Portable units can be subject to damage from dropping, storing incorrectly, age, and performance issues that come with that age. Is anyone you know still using a 10-year-old laptop?
Even if your RV GPS is updated and still serviceable after several years, will it contain the latest information on over 19,000 campgrounds, including over 360,000 reviews? Can it be updated more frequently than only once per year? What happens if it breaks prematurely and is out of warranty? More importantly, what is the total cost of that unit after five or ten years?Download the RV LIFE app here
As with all things it seems, there is an app for that. The new RV LIFE GPS & Campgrounds app is the new leader in this specialized arena. Whether you are looking to replace an RV GPS, or simply want a second opinion to the one you currently have, the RV LIFE app will show you the campgrounds, state parks, and national parks you are looking for and provide turn-by-turn RV safe driving instructions to get you there.
With that paid subscription, you’ll also have access to in-depth articles and information, campground reviews including a Favorites feature, and a fully functional campground finder with filtering. Users of the popular RV Trip Wizard program will also find their trips listed, available for use with Turn-by-Turn directions. The icing on the cake is that your entire RV-friendly route can be available OFFLINE when no internet is available.
As with any app you have for your mobile device, when you upgrade your device, you can either transfer or download the app again. Your RV GPS is now only as old as your current phone.
Stop playing the game of buying an expensive GPS every few years. Instead, take advantage of the latest technology for a nominal annual or monthly fee and get the RV LIFE GPS & Campgrounds app instead.See also: RV LIFE 2.0—Now With RV Safe GPS Routing