Customer Review

128 of 135 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Trip Report, September 3, 2007
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This review is from: Garmin nüvi 370 3.5-Inch Bluetooth Portable GPS Navigator (Electronics)
Since this is my first GPS, I really have no way to compare whether this GPS is "better" than others. I can only describe my experiences with it.

I first used the GPS locally (southeastern PA) to test it out since I had an upcoming trip to VT where I planned to really use it. I wanted to make sure I'd know how to use the controls. I used the GPS while taking public transit to see what it would say the best route was. I also used it while walking near my home and Philly to see if it knew small local streets. The GPS performed well (detouring whenever I went in unexpected directions) during these tests. There are settings to change your mode of transport to bike, bus, car/truck, foot, etc. and I used many of these modes. I never encountered any streets that weren't known and this surprised me since these maps are from 2006 and there is tons of construction. Speaking of which, that was one of my complaints: that 2006 maps are included with a late 2007 sold product. I think it should have the maps of the year it is sold in.

Then came my trip to VT which I pre-mapped using Google on the way up thinking I'd see if the GPS agreed with the route I took. I had dragged my Google Map directions so that I could avoid the interstate routes that went through NJ. My route was PA->NY->VT on the way up. The Google map directions got me confused around the NY/VT border with some road names I couldn't find, but the GPS led me the rest of the way to Stowe, VT. I had absolutely no problems; I did not get lost once using the route the Nuvi 370 told me to take, even when I accidentally missed a turn and the route changed. Incidentally, it takes about 10-30 seconds to recalculate routes and I was pleased with that. In fact, the only slow point is when I first turned on the Nuvi and it took as long as 3 minutes to "acquire satellites."

I then used the Nuvi around Stowe and found pretty much everything I punched in, including some not-so-run-of-mill places I wanted to visit. Some of the roads were dirt roads, but they were considered finished (just sort of backwoods, which seemed typical near some of the hiking spots I went to). The Nuvi did fail in finding Mt. Elsmore State Park since it took me to someone's house in the woods. It was definitely not a ranger station or park office. That was it's only failure.

Coming home I allowed the GPS to completely figure my route. I had previously set the GPS for "shortest distance," but once I changed it to "fastest route" it put me back on interstates, which is where I wanted to be after all of those one-lane (in each direction) VT roads. Another small problem I had was the Nuvi's insistence on calling road name changes "turns", which sometimes caused me to wonder whether I missed something. I realized that all I really did was change roads so from then on I ignored the word "turn" if I saw I was not supposed to physically turn. Also, I never used the sound so I was going strictly by looking at the GPS. I prefer listening to music so I figured I might not hear the turns anyway. I used the mileage to each turn to remember to change directions or roads.

If you click the bottom left of the screen (Expected Arrival Time when you're routing), you can get a view of the trip information like fastest and average speeds as well as mileage and total time. Clicking the top where the current routing info is (like the road you are on and the very next upcoming turn) lets you see quite a few more steps in the future, which I also found useful.

All in all, I believe this GPS (which I bought here on Amazon) was well worth the money even though the maps are old-ish, the travel kit and languages come separately, the warm-up time is a little long, and I could not get it to stick to the dash (I placed it in the driver's cup holder instead since the dash of my car is too slanted to reach). I will be using my Nuvi 370 often.
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Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Aug 19, 2008 2:42:19 PM PDT
If you buy a Garmin with old maps, you can register on their website and download the latest maps for free within 30 days
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