Paper Map v Sat-Nav
12th October 2015
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Alan at Cosmographics argues the pros and cons of having one without the other and suggests having both in your car is actually a very good idea.

We've all heard the horror stories of people slavishly following their sat-nav instructions to the edge of the cliff and of huge vehicles getting wedged down narrow country lanes but surely we would never find that happening to us, would we?

Well, I guess that depends on the circumstances; for in-town driving and for help in locating a destination the sat-nav is very convenient. The down side is we tend to drive to the spoken instructions and when it goes wrong we suddenly realise that we haven't been paying much attention to our surroundings and don't really know where we are.

Road closures and diversions are a major cause of potential upset when they happen. With no real awareness of where you are and without a map it's easy to get lost. Post codes don't always take us to the right place and it's easy to forget to read the road signs when we're relying on the sat-nav to get us there. On the other hand, for some journeys it’s not always necessary to do research prior to setting off and the sat-nav can be so much more convenient than a paper map. Try using one of those when you're driving alone. It can be very stressful.

On the positive side having a paper map means you can track your progress towards your destination as well as having a good idea of where you are and what's around you. Landmarks like churches, pubs, parks and post offices can give you the reassurance of knowing exactly where you are, while a bespoke map can include all the detail of what's important to you e.g. parking, preferred entrances, opening hours, etc.

So, probably the best scenario is to use a map for planning your route in advance and use the sat-nav for prompts along the way. That way the stress of keeping track of your location and progress can be reduced. You can focus on the road signs and arrive relaxed at your destination.

And if you run a business or organisation you might want to think about this for your customers and visitors. Why not provide a bespoke map of your location with "here we are" on it, rather than simply your postcode and Google Map link? Your visitors may well have a better experience and a specially drawn map, showing the location of your meeting or event, landmarks to help as they drive in, maybe a picture of the building and parking available etc., all show you care. Your visitors will arrive to your meeting more relaxed and may thank you for it.

Cosmographics in Watford create bespoke maps for all kinds of purposes including business and leisure. If you would like to create a map for your visitors or as a memento of your own travels Cosmographics have a range of very cost effective, bespoke options available for you. Follow this link to view their feature.

About the Author

Alan G

Member since: 14th June 2014

Owner of Cosmographics, a Watford based cartographic company. Cosmographics is a business with a reputation worldwide for making high quality maps for business, education and as gifts or presents, as...

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