Best Handheld GPS For International Travel: Handheld GPS, launched in the 1990s, are portable devices that provide navigation assistance and the data of the land surveys. The technology comprises the GPS or Global Positioning System and modern geography. The devices also show the landmarks of national and historic significance.
These devices come in various sizes. The screen may or may not be a touchscreen. Some button enabled ones can be used in all four seasons. Most of the touchscreen ones can be used even with gloves on in cold weather.
A few of these have pre-installed maps of countries and you can also load maps of the places you desire. The accuracy varies from device to device. The recent ones have better reception and the display is also colorful.
This device is very useful during international travel, as you don’t have to depend on any human guide and can be on your own.
In this article we will start with a few things to consider before buying a Best Handheld GPS for International Travel, followed by a review of some products, ending with a buying guide.
Things to consider before buying:
- The screen size of the device
The screen is measured diagonally. The screen size ranges from 2.5 to 7 inches. If the screen size is larger then it’s easy to enter the location and view the directions. Smaller ones are easier to carry but the display may not be very good. Go for a moderate size which has a reasonable size and is easy to carry also.
- Spoken directions
The Best Handheld GPS for International Travel becomes more efficient when the directions are spoken. You will not have to look into the screen all the time while walking or driving. The device will tell you the streets you are entering and also tell you where to take turns. This makes the following directions easier.
- Information on route
Go for a device that provides information about the routes to the selected location. This information will help you to choose a route you think is appropriate. Information about traffic congestion and toll roads will help you choose a route that takes lesser time.
- Communication through Bluetooth
If you have a Bluetooth compatible phone then you can use the GPS along with the speaker and microphone that comes with the phone.
- The entry of location dynamically
The dynamic entry of location means a prediction of locations as the user starts entering the location. This is a common feature but very important as it saves a lot of time.
- Alternate supply of power
Look for a device that can be charged from different sources like the car lighter, the standard house socket or through a USB connection to the computer.
Top 7 Best Handheld GPS for International Travel
Here are the Product Reviews for Best Handheld GPS for International Travel:
1. Garmin GPSMAP 64s Worldwide
This is a device that you can use in all four seasons of the year. There is no need to worry when it’s showering. Don’t even have to take off your gloves as it gets colder.
It is an ideal choice if you are a big button lover, as it comes with a good size of buttons. The screen is readable under sunlight and the size is 2.6 inches with a resolution of 160 x 240 pixels.
You can even connect the device to a smartphone wirelessly, and load and view on the phone. Live tracking is also possible.
The best part of this product is its large antenna that gives accurate direction even on complicated terrains and has a battery life of 16 hours. It requires a dual battery to operate and contains internal storage of 4 GB which is expandable.
If you are an adventure lover then this product is perfect for you.
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2. Garmin eTrex 20x
This product by Garmin is known for it being an inexpensive Best Handheld GPS for International Travel with a small size and having very less weight as compared to other similar devices.
Other features include water resistance, durability and it works perfectly even in very cold conditions.
The 2.2 inches screen is readable in bright as well as dim lighting conditions and has a color display. The device has an impressive battery life of 25 hours and an enhanced memory.
The accuracy can be trusted up to a distance of 9 feet. The technology used is GPS and Glonass satellite systems.
The device has pre-installed basic maps. You can upload topographic maps also.
3. Garmin Montana 610 Camo
Garmin Montana comes with a touchscreen of size 4 inches which is rotatable. Tracking is done using GPS and Glonass satellite technologies. 100000 maps of the United States topology are preloaded in it.
It has a 4 GB inbuilt memory system that can store a maximum of 200 routes and 4000 waypoints. Also, an 8 MP camera is installed on the system.
The device is even equipped with a barometric altimeter to give information about pressure at different heights.
A 3-axis compass gives you very accurate directions.
The battery life is of 16 hours.
A great product with multiple features at a reasonable price.
4. DeLorme inReach SE Satellite Tracker
The product comes with a reliable messaging system with which you can receive as well as send messages and emails to anyone around the world.
Iridium satellite network is the technology on which the device depends on for showing directions.
One unique feature is the adjustable tracking time which can be anything between 10 minutes to 4 hours depending on your need.
If you are in any emergency then the SOS feature will help you to track remotely and update your situation for proper resources to be deployed.
5. Garmin Foretrex 401
The device is small but outstanding and can be worn on the wrist. You can use it during running and walking as it gives you quite good information like your heart rate. Because of its compact size, this device becomes a very good choice for any outdoor activities.
It has an LCD display that is easy to read with a resolution of 100 x 64 pixels. The battery also lasts as long as 17 hours.
The device has audible tones and gives multiple format views for a single location to the user.
Foretrex 401 is fitted with an electronic compass, which gives quite accurate directions, and also a barometric altimeter for information on weather and heights.
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6. Garmin Montana 680
Includes a one-year subscription to Birdseye Satellite Imagery to give you a good view of your surroundings if you are not comfortable with the normal satellite images.
Enabled with a track manager where you can keep a log of the routes or ways you have taken or are going to take.
An 8 MP camera lets you capture anytime you want. You can even geotag you’re the photos you capture with this device.
Uses GPS and Glonass for high sensitivity of the receiver even in areas with more coverage and deep canyons.
The screen is large and has a higher resolution for a better view.
The battery can last up to 16 hours with Lithium-ion batteries and 22 hours with the standard AA batteries.
7. TomTom VIA 1515M
With a 5-inch large touchscreen display, this is one of the latest products with GPS at an affordable price. The color display has a 480 x 272-pixel resolution.
An interesting feature is the lifetime map updates. Lane guidance is quite advanced and therefore you don’t have to worry about missing any turn. The device is installed with the latest maps of the United States, Canada, and Mexico.
This device is perfect for guiding you while you drive as it comes with an EasyPort car mount. As shown in the picture below the guide is very accurate and gives a real-time view of the road, which is very convenient for car drivers.
The battery performance is also impressive which lets you use the device for a longer time. You can easily charge it in the car as it comes with a USB cable for charging.
The best part is that all these features are available at a really low price which makes it affordable for many.
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Buyer’s guide for a Best Handheld GPS for International Travel
The maps in the device can take up a lot of space. So make sure you have an expandable internal memory on your device or it should have the facility to connect external memory devices.
In-built rechargeable batteries are a better choice if you have to charge facilities available. Otherwise, the standard reusable batteries can be useful when traveling for long distances. Carry a few of them and change when required. They last longer than lithium-ion batteries. The more the features greater will be the power consumption. So look into the battery life of the device and not just its features.
Buttons may look ugly in today’s world with all touchscreen devices around. But these devices with buttons can be used in multiple seasons and are less prone to damage. Touchscreens, on the other hand, give a better view and a convenience for guidance but require a lot of care and protection from weather conditions.
It is an important component. The compass will give you accurate directions on the spot. So make sure you get a device that has a magnetic compass on it.
Best Handheld GPS for International Travel is an extremely useful device. With maps already installed, it makes things easier for tourists when in new countries. If you are planning to go on international travel then definitely get one of these.