Has anyone used an iPhone Offline GPS app while in Croatia? I have read mixed reviews on TomTom, Co-Pilot, Navigon and Sygic. The price to purchase the app is still cheaper than renting from car rental for a week.
Hi, I tried my Iphone using offline GPS but unless you are on the major roads it is pretty useless. We were in the back roads by Plitvice and we tried using the Iphone because even our GPS was not giving good directions. The main thing is that in the small roads they are not well marked and the iphone many times either told us to turn after we passed the turn or it didn't give an alternate route which the car GPS did. It cost us 20Euro to rent the car GPS, but it did help when not on the main roads. Make sure you set up your car GPS parameters (fastest time, shortest route, use toll roads, etc) before you start. Ours was set up not take toll roads and that caused initial problems when it directed us to back roads.
We had two different GPS - one that came installed in the rental car and another off-line one we downloaded on a tablet - and one hard map and still had an incredibly difficult time getting around Bosnia (and I've heard Montenegro can be the same.) What GPS says is "faster" because the road is indeed "shorter" may not necessarily be faster. It took us on a "short-cut" highway that ended up being a goat trail road where we couldn't go above 8-10 mph for about an hour. We were so lucky we made it through that part of our trip without any car troubles. (Our car definitely did suffer damage from that road, but fortunately it didn't effect us until the later part of our trip when we got to Croatia which was much easier to get around in and find a mechanic.) Our GPS system did the same thing to us when Croatia, but fortunately in Croatia the road signage was much better so it was obvious to us which way really was the best way to get to a highway so we didn't have to rely on our GPS. With two GPS maps and one hard map and no success, I have nothing to recommend unfortunately.
May I ask which offline GPS App you have downloaded? Maybe I should just buy a TomTom in the US before traveling.
I use a Navigon GPS rather than the app on a smartphone, and I have been impressed by the coverage in Croatia, less so in Bosnia and Montenegro. That said, I always buy a decent map of the area I am travelling in, since a map provides a better sense of location. For this part of the world I prefer maps from Freytag & Berndt, but there are others. The area does not have that many roads so a map of scale 1:250,000 will meet most peoples needs, and you can buy one from Amazon before you leave home.
I think I used NavFree for a tablet. The other GPS, which I expected to be more reliable, was the one from our European rental car.
Oh and I forgot we used a FOURTH map sometime in addition to the two failed GPS and one hard map. Before leaving our hotel, we would download the Google instructions from how to get from one place to the next.
Again, all the maps worked pretty well except for Bosnia and Italy and a couple parts of Croatia. I'm still glad we drove. But it was definitely challenging.
When I went last year, I rented a car during my stay in Rovinj and returned it in Split a few days later. I got a wifi hotspot router with my rental car and let me tell you that thing was worth every penny. I'd say it was no more than $20 a day and I believe you can get these at various places throughout Europe. I don't know too much about where you can get them, though, but I used it with my iPhone last year (used the phone's GPS) and it was great.