ipad - maps - driving

Old Mar 7th, 2012, 06:44 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 35
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
ipad - maps - driving

I will be driving in the Loire Valley for three days, carrying an iPad. I love paper maps, but wonder if I should get an ipad app. My iPad is Wifi - so offline functionality is important. Do rental car agencies provide road maps? Are there inexpensive road maps available in France?
Freda_Seddon is offline  
Old Mar 7th, 2012, 06:54 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 3,179
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
It is the driver´s responsibility to furnish his own map and itinerary. Consider the Michelin French Road Atlas:

http://www.amazon.com/Michelin-Guide.../dp/2067129988
Sarastro is offline  
Old Mar 8th, 2012, 12:31 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 48
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Cars can also be hired with GPS. I have found them better than using road atlas's and paper maps as they are generally more up to date and also are wonderful when you see something that you want to detour for. If you love paper maps then I would recommend the Michelin Pays-de-Loire one rather than the weight of an entire French Road Atlas. Michelin maps are available online but are also widely available in France including in service stations and newsagencies.

Enjoy your trip.
FemmeFrancophile is offline  
Old Mar 8th, 2012, 06:58 AM
  #4  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 35
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I have GPS on my work Blackberry- I drive a LOT for work in a large rural area;it fails sometimes quite wildly. I would prefer paper or iPad map over GPS.
Freda_Seddon is offline  
Old Mar 8th, 2012, 08:09 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 7,160
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
GPS works with satellites. It should work in most areas if it can "see" a satellite. Do you mount or put your Blackberry on the dashboard?

Assuming you're from the US, do you have the AT&T 3G version of the iPad2? You're not going to get much WiFi connectivity while on the road in France. But the 3G iPad can use the cell phone signal to locate you and act GPS-like. (In addition, it needs to have a data source, either from AT&T or a microSIM card. But then you can use the iPad where there's no WiFi.)

We travel with a GPS and a cell phone (and a Kindle). We're taking our new iPad2 3G on our next trip. But I still like to have a paper map, more for planning purposes, to get the big picture. But those Michelin paper maps are so big when you open them up in a car. So we also have a French road atlas. So much information can't be bad, can it?
Mimar is offline  
Old Mar 8th, 2012, 09:51 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 49,560
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I hate GPS and always use paper maps. You can buy Michelin maps online here in the USA before departure or pick them up in any maison de la presse or bookstore, and some supermarkets, in France. You can also buy the smaller-sized Michelin road atlas here or in bookstores in France.
StCirq is offline  
Old Mar 8th, 2012, 12:14 PM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 1,707
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Michelin road maps are wonderful, clear, not expensive, and widely available. Highly recommended.

I keep trying to warm up to GPS, but not succeeding. Yesterday on Sky news (our French satellite system brings in some English Language news stations) they were interviewing a councillor from Oldham (I think) The SatNav/GPS system directs people, including large trucks from a nearby manufacturing area to take a narrow lane to the motorway - the most direct route. They end up knocking down gate posts, digging up gardens, etc. Also pretty dangerous. So there is now a sign at the entrance saying, more or less, 'Dont believe your SatNav, take another route.'
Carlux is offline  
Old Mar 8th, 2012, 12:31 PM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 7,160
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
GPS's are not perfect. But they're really useful when driving into or out of a strange city.
Mimar is offline  
Old Mar 8th, 2012, 12:41 PM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 432
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I kow that then OP does not have 3G but using your local hardware to navigate in a foreign country could be horrifically expensive. We were lost for a very short time, I used my 3g iPhone and it cost £20 for around 2 minutes in Milan.

There have been stories in the UK press of UK contract holders using hardware to navigate via UK 3G contracts but outside the UK and have returned to £1000 plus bills.

Being a yachtsman I would always rely on a brain and a piece of up to date paper...... and a navigator who doesn't

A. Fall asleep
B. Read Hello magazine when approaching key road junctions

Or

C Raise key points in your marriage where your performance hasn't been quite up to scratch.
DickieG is offline  
Old Mar 8th, 2012, 02:10 PM
  #10  
twk
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 1,486
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
You're better off to either rent a GPS (or vehicle with one), or, better yet, purchase a GPS before you go, get familiar with how it operates, load the Euoropean maps, and enter your destinations (or some of them) so that you can load a trip quickly by selecting recent destinations.

GPS is infinitely superior to paper maps in one respect--telling you where you are at any given moment. However, blind reliance upon GPS route planning will definitely lead you down some rabbit trails. For me, the best solution is to plan the route before the trip (using paper maps, online sites, what have you), then use GPS as a backup.
twk is offline  
Old Mar 8th, 2012, 02:16 PM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 78,320
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
any gas station I have been in in France has many maps - get the Michelin 1:200,000 (I believe) detailed map of the whole Loire.
PalenQ is offline  
Old Mar 8th, 2012, 11:20 PM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 17,268
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Before considering satnav at all, you should find out how much your car hire company will charge you for it. My experience is that you can buy a set for less than Hertz's weekly charge.

In your case, using your iPad in any useful way will almost bankrupt you, so it just isn't a sensible option. FWIW, our strategy is to map our first day's route from Google directions or Viamichelin and print it at home, take our own satnav with us (updating it before we leave, though that's not infallible) and buy a new French road atlas every five years or so from the first large hypermarket we pass (about €25, but a lot more at petrol stations). Ordinary Carrefours and Carrefour Planets have good book sections. Carrefour Markets don't.

France has an exceptionally dense (and often surprisingly poorly signed, though signage on its motorways and routes nationales is generally excellent) tertiary road network, and part of the fun of French driving, once you've done the big slugs by motorway, is to immerse yourself into it. A proper road atlas, showing 99.5% of the country's roads, is absolutely indispensable for this.

Maps from hire companies almost anywhere in Europe are usually fine for telling you how the busiest route from the airport concerned to the next town - but virtually useless for anything else. They're usually worse than useless for navigating inside a large town, and miss out so large a proportion of rural roads as to be of almost zero use in touring an area.
flanneruk is offline  
Old Mar 9th, 2012, 07:08 AM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 7,160
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Another thought: if you're driving by yourself (no navigator), then a GPS is really useful.
Mimar is offline  
Old Mar 9th, 2012, 03:18 PM
  #14  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 35
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks all. I will buy a paper map - either here or in Paris. I've lived and driven in the UK for several years, drove to Normandy some years ago with only a paper map.

My iPad is wifi only, so no issues re roaming charges as I will just use local free wifi spots. There are some maps that can be read off-line.
My experience with Blackberry directions, has been quite eye-opening. I'm a visiting nurse working in a large rural area - so drive a lot and need to find places well of the beaten track on a regular basis. I take all directions given to me by humans with a huge spoon of salt. Prefer to use maps as experience has taught me many people can't find themselves - never mind give directions.
Freda_Seddon is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
trvlgirlmq
Europe
16
Apr 14th, 2015 05:05 PM
milestogoneedadvice
Road Trips
44
Jul 18th, 2013 01:14 PM
PaoloCast
Europe
6
Dec 17th, 2012 01:42 PM
DebitNM
Europe
11
Mar 11th, 2012 11:25 AM
paultheman
Europe
12
Jul 2nd, 2009 03:24 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Manage Preferences - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell or Share My Personal Information -