Can you recommend an inexpensive GPS system that could be used for both geocaching and navigation?

Question by Gene K: Can you recommend an inexpensive GPS system that could be used for both geocaching and navigation?
Please note if any additional upgrades have to be bought to add navigation. I could most likely get by with little detail at the city level. I would just like to know how far it is between towns when driving, etc.

Also would like to try a little geocaching. A GPS unit for me is a luxury, so I don’t want to blow a lot of money on it.

Thank you.

Best answer:

Answer by Vangorn2000
It really depends on which application you want to use it more for. Based on your needs, if you just want distances between points, and don’t care where the nearest restaurant or gas station or ATM is, you’re probably fine with a basic handheld GPS. The Garmin eTrex Handheld lets you save some of your own “waypoints” as you define them, and you can get one for $ 60. It is, admittedly, difficult to use in a car and eats batteries rather quickly, but for what you said you wanted, it might be perfect…and it’s about the cheapest one you’ll probably find, unless you can find one on sale used.

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  • more Can you recommend an inexpensive GPS system that could be used for both geocaching and navigation?


  1. GJ289FIA says:

    Unfortunately mapping and inexpensive seem to be mutually exclusive. The Garmin eTrex Legend might fill the bill, but the base map on this (and most GPS units) does not include any city detail. For the eTrex, you would have to purchase City Navigator, which actually covers all roads, not just the cities, but it costs almost as much as the GPS. List prices from Garmin are 139 for City Navigator, and 160 for the Legend. Street prices will be somewhat lower. One of my pet peeves is that all the major GPS manufacturers have proprietary mapping software, and you can’t mix and match.

    While you can get by with the Legend, there are two things that would disqualify it for my personal use: No electronic compass and only 8 megs of room to add extra maps. One “wild card” GPS is the unit now offered by DeLorme, the PN-20. Can’t speak from experience, but it sounds interesting, and may be worth investigating. It’s not really cheap, but perhaps the bundle with mapping software could be attractive.

    Bottom line is that cheap probably isn’t the best way to go.

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