Wednesday, January 20, 2010

GPS Buying Guide

Magellan Maestro 4700 4.7-Inch Widescreen Bluetooth Portable GPS NavigatorI finally purchased my Christmas present last night! I scored my gift via an Amazon Gold Box deal of the day! My parents gave us some money for Christmas and we had decided that with our upcoming move that a GPS for our car would provide useful help and lots of help navigating the East coast and all of its treasures. But which one should we get?  What GPS do you have?

We knew that, for us, we could probably find one that would do the job for near $100 or be extravagant for $200. We had a mental limit in mind of not crossing the $150 mark.

The blessing and curse of internet shopping is understanding your purchase better and the competing options. The curse is that you can very easily become mired down in the information and suffer from analyis paralysis. Making a decision is often better than not making any decision at all.

I compared the Garmin, TomTom, and Magellan brands. I used Amazon and BestBuy for most of my research. I found a very useful Magellan Comparison Chart via BestBuy. Via Amazon, you can browse nearly any Garmin Nuvi and find a section called, "Which nĂ¼vi is Best for You?" right below the Product Description and What's in the Box. I found this comparison chart very helpful in narrowing down the models I was interested in. Stylistically, the TomTom and Garmin are very different. Their approach to marketing and their user base is different although the GPS is still a GPS.

Last night's purchase was not a purely impulsive buy. We decided more than a month ago that we wanted one, and applying the 30-day rule, we found that we still wanted one. I knew last night that I wanted the Magellan brand, however, I was not as familiar model on sale as I would have liked.

When you have narrowed down your field of interest it is in your best interest to still be aware of the higher end, more expensive models so that you can spot a great deal when they go on sale. This is a fine line to walk because you have to be careful not to let yourself be overcome by feature creep.

Overall, we are excited with our purchase and we are glad that we used the 30-day rule to be sure that we really wanted a GPS. We are also happy that we could find a better model than we were expecting to purchase because of the daily deal sale price. I hope that when it arrives I can give a positive review and share some of our traveling experiences later this year.

Have you ever purchased something, or not purchased something, when it was on sale, but before your 30 days were up? Please share your dilema below.

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