Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Maps vs. GPS

The trusty road atlas has fallen out of favour over the last few years as technology caught up with demand and GPS navigation systems became more affordable to the masses. GPS is definitely a must have for any guide, it gets you from point A to B in the shortest time possible and helps you out in a pinch if you happen to take the wrong turn, but should this really be a reason to recycle your maps?

GPS quickly and efficiently calculates the route you need to follow whereas a map gives you the big picture of the area you are heading to/through. What happens when a tourist would like to see the layout and boundaries of the provinces? How would you show them the size of the Kruger National Park in relation to the size of the country? How do you show them exactly where you’re heading if you don’t have a map with you?

Maps come in hundreds of different varieties, from road atlases to pocket guides. You get specialised maps of areas such as the Kruger National Park, Winelands, Panorama, Drakensberg , Richtersveld, the Garden Route, 4 X 4 routes, flower route map and dive site to name but a few.

GPS might be the new kid on the block but that good old trusty map that has laid forgotten in the glove box is still a handy tool for any tourist guide.

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