Some, but not all, vehicle rental companies also offer in-car GPS as an option. Avis, Budget, Alamo, National and Enterprise, among others, have GPS-equipped rental units that use proprietary automotive navigation technology developed by Garmin, a global leader when it comes to GPS devices and electronic maps. Whether you are booking online or over the phone, in most cases though, you will have to specify to the rental company that that you would like the GPS option when you reserve your car since you will be paying extra.
Typically, the on-board GPS receivers in the rental cars feature a simple user-friendly touchscreen interface with automatic route calculation to any destination and text-to-voice prompts that provide spoken directions. The navigator device includes detailed maps including points of interest like hotels, gas stations, restaurants, ATMs and tourist destinations. As with Hertz’s NeverLost system, you can also download your own pre-planned Favorites folders into the device’s memory from your SD card. To access your planned destinations, just select “Where to,” then “Favorites” from the on-screen menu. Once you’ve selected Favorites, you should see all the destinations stored on your SD card. The GPS-aided navigation system in the rental unit will then provide you route information for your selected destinations.
With an in-car navigation system, you save time and money. Planning for a travel can be done in advance. You can manage your time by formulating an itinerary to follow. Based on your itinerary of places to go, the system’s software can calculate and determine the shortest and the easiest path to each given point of destination. Additionally, you will be guided about the location and the geography of where you will be heading. It will feed you information about the roughness of paths along the way, allowing you to avoid bumpy and stony roads and to follow a safer and cleaner path to your intended destination. With GPS tracking the route through your mapped-out plan, you won’t get lost even if you have to drive in the dark at night or at near zero visibility in a thickly-fogged road. Of course, you save on money too in terms of your lower fuel consumption.
With an in-car navigation system support, you can additionally get help in an emergency situation much faster. The rental company knows exactly where you are at any moment. If your rental vehicle broke down in the middle of the road or you got yourself involved in an accident, all you have to do is contact the company’s live support and ask for assistance. If the vehicle gets stolen, they can track its exact location and its speed, and report the matter to the police. In case you can’t remember where you left the vehicle in a large and crowded parking lot, they’ll also be happy to turn on its lights and horns by remote control to help you find your way back to the car.