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Whether you are going on a vacation or are hitting the road for business, having the proper navigational system can save you time, and money, and will keep you safe on the road. And while the Lifetime Maps used to help you navigate roads may be the same, the device you use them on can significantly change how you experience the outdoors.
To help you pick out the best navigation system for your RV, we have picked out our list of the best RV GPS systems to try out.
Table of Contents
- Navigating the Best GPS Systems for Your RV
- Our Reviews of the Best GPS Options
- Recap: Best RV GPS Systems
- Buying a GPS for Your RV: What to Look For
- FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
Navigating the Best GPS Systems for Your RV
|Best RV GPS Unit
|TruckWay GPS – Pro Series Model 720
|Ohrex GPS Navigation
|Rand McNally OverDryve 7 RV
|Best for Multifunction
|Tomtom Trucker 520
|Best for Real-Time Map Updates
|Garmin RV 770 NA LMT-S
Our Reviews of the Best GPS Options
Here are a ton of details on our recommendations and why they beat out the competition in our research.
TruckWay GPS – Pro Series Model 720
If you are a truck driver, then it is imperative that you have the best navigational device when you are on the road. Same goes for full-time RVers, and one of the best GPS units on the market right now is the TruckWay GPS. This pro series model allows you to have everything you need in order to have a safe and comfortable trip when you are traveling.
One of the best features is the impeccable customer support system. WIth TruckWay GPS, you get 24/7 customer service support. You will actually get a live person on the phone at any time of the day who will be able to assist you with your navigational needs.
Other great features include the free Lifetime Maps that cover the USA, Canada, and Mexico. The maps offer users 3D imaging that includes 3D buildings for even more clarity when driving. There are also 2D maps instead if you prefer. The 7-inch touchscreen is easy to use when you are on the road.
- The 3D mapping gives you added navigational clarity when you are on the road
- Specific road restrictions for vehicle weight and height help you plan your route
- The touchscreen is visually clear and user friendly
- You can look forward to 24/7 customer support for additional assistance
- A few customers report that the unit can get wonky when the weather is questionable
Ohrex GPS Navigation
The Ohrex GPS Navigation offers you everything you need at a great price. It comes preloaded with the latest 2020 North American map that includes the USA, Canada, and Mexico. While not preloaded, you can also download other maps including, but not limited to Europe, Ireland, Australia, Ireland, and the UK. Operation is easy thanks to the 7-inch GPS touchscreen.
Also, the verbal turn-by-turn instructions allow you to keep your hand and eyes on the road. Other neat features include the detection of active speed cameras, active lane guidance assist, and different driver alerts. When you are programming your route, you will be able to avoid nuances like specific road types and delayed routes. Overall, you can look forward to the quality performance at an unbeatable price in this unit.
- The downloadable maps allow you to have coverage across the globe
- Intelligent route planning allows you to have the fastest and safest journey possible
- The unit is easy to operate with adequate screen size and touchscreen qualities
- Maps can only be updated when you connect to a PC and update it manually
Best for Multifunction
Rand McNally OverDryve 7 RV
When it comes to getting the most out of your GPS, this unit from the Rand McNally brand is the perfect unit for the job. This 7-inch navigation comes loaded with everything you need for multi-functionality. One unique feature is its ability to adapt to your vehicle specifically. Based on the height, class, and weight of your vehicle, you will be able to take advantage of navigational features like lanes and exits that are tailored to your car.
Other features like voice capabilities with navigation, calls, and texts allow you to keep your eyes on the road. In addition to this, safety is emphasized with the built-in dash cam that allows you to record traffic incidents with ease. Updating your GPS is a breeze, thanks to the wireless updates. Also, with WiFi capabilities, you can get real-time weather, traffic, and fuel price alerts.
- Lifetime Maps and a Digital Road Atlas keep your GPS up to date for life
- Enjoy great features like specific navigation, built-in dash cam, and WiFi
- Voice-activated music streaming will keep you entertained while on the road
- You cannot edit a planned route, you must cancel and then restart it with your edited route
Best for Real-Time Map Updates
Tomtom Trucker 520
Another one of the best GPS units for truckers comes from one of the most reputable GPS brands, Tomtom. With the Tomtom Trucker, you can look forward to being connected to the latest maps for the USA and Canada at no additional cost. You can also look forward to 1500+ different travel center points and other points of interest that pertain to travelers.
The maps update in real-time so that you can avoid nuances like traffic accidents and other traffic delays. These real-time services can be updated quickly when you connect your Tomtom Trucker to your smartphone.
In addition to that, your Tomtom Trucker is compatible with both Siri and Google for even more functionality. The hands-free capabilities of this GPS allow you to keep your hands and eyes on the road so that you stay safe when you are driving.
- The voice controls allow you to keep your hands on the wheel
- Users enjoy Lifetime Maps for both the USA and Canada at no additional cost
- The screen is five inches and is rather small when compared to other GPS units
Best Bluetooth-Enabled GPS
Garmin RV 770 NA LMT-S
Garmin is a staple in the GPS industry and their RV 770 NA LMT-S GPS Navigator unit that is specialized for RVs is no slouch. We particularly liked it for its Bluetooth capabilities. You can do hands-free calling, smart notifications, and voice-activated navigation.
In addition to Bluetooth, this Garmin GPS has access to live traffic updates, weather, and even suggests attractions and RV parks along the way. The built-in WiFi is also a plus for easily downloading maps and software updates. We also really liked the resolution on the display – it is super clear and gives you a great side-by-side view (pictured here) that can help you drive your rig with confidence.
Overall, if you’re looking for an RV GPS unit with all the bells and whistles, this Garmin RV GPS might be a good option for you.
- Hands-free capabilities via Bluetooth
- Live traffic and weather updates
- High-resolution screen
- A fairly affordable price point
- Occasionally known for inefficient routes
Recap: Best RV GPS Systems
- TruckWay GPS – Pro Series Model 720 – Best Overall
- Ohrex GPS Navigation – Most Affordable
- Rand McNally OverDryve 7 RV – Best for Multifunction
- Tomtom Trucker 520 – Best for Real-Time Map Updates
- Garmin RV 770 NA LMT-S – Bluetooth Enabled
Buying a GPS for Your RV: What to Look For
When you are purchasing a GPS system, there are a couple of things that you need to keep in mind. Here are four factors you should consider when you are making your purchase.
A good GPS should be able to automatically download things like route updates, new maps, and everything in between.
Some of the notable connectivity features you can look forward to including weather, traffic, and news updates. If you travel for business, then the ability to connect your smartphone to your WiFi will allow you to make and receive calls and texts. By keeping your hands and attention on the road, GPS units that can connect to WiFi can make your experience on the road safer.
Also, does the unit have Bluetooth connectivity? If so, it can be pretty convenient to hook up your GPS to your smartphone or tablet.
Speaking of safety, it’s important to consider safety features like voice activation and speed limit detection. When you are driving on unfamiliar roads, you are less apt to recognize restrictions like speed limit changes. With a GPS unit that can detect them for you, you will be that much safer on the road.
More advanced GPS units take safety to the next level by offering customer support around the clock. This can be especially helpful when you are traveling around parts of the country that are prone to dropping the GPS signal.
Lifetime Maps & Predictive Data Entry
Most GPS units will come with Lifetime Maps. This essentially means you will be able to update your maps throughout the lifetime of your GPS without having to pay additional fees. Every GPS system typically comes preloaded with maps of the geography you purchased it in. There will be instances where you will need to download maps that cover other areas like neighboring countries. When this is the case, you will need to update your GPS.
Some GPS units are easy to update because you can simply connect them to your WiFi and maps can be updated that way. Other GPS units, especially older ones, will require a connection to a computer so that you can download the map. Depending on what your needs are, you may prefer to download maps one way or another. Be sure to understand the different types of maps that come with your GPS when you are looking to purchase it.
When you’re entering addresses, your GPS should be able to predict the final address in real-time, which cuts down on entry time. This feature is especially useful when you’re driving, although some units will automatically disable keyboard functionality when the vehicle is in motion.
The quality of your screen can make a difference in your experience with your GPS unit. Depending on where your unit is installed and the quality of the screen, viewing your GPS device can be straining on your eyes. When shopping for your GPS, consider screen features like the size, whether anti-reflection glass or tempered glass is used, and how it functions under sunlight and during the evening hours.
Easy To Use
You will of course want to opt for a model that will be super easy for you to use. This will ensure that you are able to use your new RV GPS without too much hassle. Does your chosen RV GPS come with a comprehensive manual to show you how to use it properly?
This will be essential if you’ve never used a GPS before and aren’t really sure where to get started.
It will also be worth thinking about the display of the GPS itself. What kind of size does the GPS offer you? The larger the screen, the clearer it will be to see the directions to your destination.
The smaller the GPS, the harder it will be at a glance to see where you next need to turn. It will be worth considering what screen size will be best for your needs.
Another factor to consider is how easy the RV GPS will be to attach to your windshield. You will need to ensure that it’s not too big so that it takes up too much space on your windshield and blocks your view. You will also need to ensure that the RV GPS stays in place for the entirety of your journey and doesn’t fall off.
Lastly, you will need to consider what kind of budget you have to play with. You will need to think about which features will be essential to you and your RV. This will give you a better idea of how much it will cost to get the model that best suits your needs.
It may be tempting to opt for a cheaper model to be kinder to your wallet. However, there’s no guarantee that these cheaper models will be able to give you the functionality that you are after. Instead, it will be best to weigh up which features you need, then select the best RV GPS that you can reasonably afford.
Looking to upgrade more tech in your rig? Check out these guides too.
FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
Do I need an RV GPS?
That is totally up to you! However, if you’re traveling in a remote area of the country, having a handy navigation system with you can reduce your worry of potentially getting lost. Plus, these systems are typically a lot less distracting than looking at a physical map while you’re driving. Another plus is your can plan out your routes in advance, saving you time and fuel on the way to your final destination.
Will these GPS units auto-update with new roads?
Not all GPS systems will auto-update with new routes and roads, but we’ve made sure to note that above for all of our top picks. Some GPS systems will need to be manually updated while others will update automatically when new roads are built.
What are some common problems with RV GPS systems?
Here are some common issues you should be aware of that folks encounter when operating GPS units in their RV. First, some units may have a more sensitive screen than others, which could cause mistypes. Second, the SD card inside each system could come loose or need to be replaced every so often. And finally, the GPS battery could deteriorate over time, so you may need to keep it plugged in at all times.
Is an RV GPS worth it?
Yes, and RV GPS is worth it. You can try and rely on free alternatives, but there is no guarantee that these will be able to direct you down suitable routes. If you’re an avid user of your RV, it will be much better to purchase a GPS that has been designed with your vehicle in mind. This will be able to direct you down suitable roads that will be better suited to your RV. So you won’t have to stress about being caught unawares while out on the road!
Is there a Free RV GPS app?
The best free GPS apps are undoubtedly Apple and Google maps. However, it’s worth noting that these haven’t been designed with RVs and other larger vehicles in mind. So you may find that by following their suggested routes, you may be taken down unsuitable roads for your RV. To prevent any mishaps from happening, you will be much better off buying a high-quality GPS that has been designed with RVs in mind. Check out the products that we have reviewed in more detail above to get you started!