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Exploring the World with GPS Watches: A Guide to Traveling with Location Tracking Timepieces

by Thomas Jentzsch on June 28, 2023


The Rise of GPS Watches and their Popularity Among Travelers

GPS watches, once a luxury item only for athletes or fitness enthusiasts, have seen a dramatic rise in popularity among travelers in recent years. And it’s no surprise why – with the ability to track your location, provide turn-by-turn directions, monitor your fitness activities and even offer emergency SOS features, GPS watches are the ultimate travel accessory. But what sets GPS watches apart from other location tracking devices is their convenience and versatility.

Unlike traditional navigation systems or smartphones which require constant attention and can drain your battery life quickly, GPS watches can be worn on the wrist and offer long-lasting battery life. This means you can navigate unfamiliar territories with ease while still being able to enjoy your surroundings without distractions.

How GPS Watches Can Enhance the Travel Experience

GPS watches have revolutionized the way we travel by offering a variety of features that cater to every traveler’s needs. Whether you’re an adventure seeker looking for rugged terrain or a culture buff exploring new cities, there’s a GPS watch out there that suits your needs.

For outdoor enthusiasts, GPS watches offer essential features such as altitude tracking, route planning and weather monitoring. With these features at hand, hikers can conquer new heights while knowing their exact location at all times.

Likewise, cultural travelers will find value in features such as city maps and points of interest. By syncing your watch with popular travel apps like Google Maps or Tripadvisor, you’ll have access to real-time information about local landmarks and attractions so you can maximize your sightseeing experience.

But even beyond navigation tools, GPS watches provide added value for all travelers by offering functions like messaging capabilities (so you don’t miss important messages), music playback (so you don’t get bored on long flights or commutes), and even language translation features (so you can communicate with locals easily). GPS watches have become a must-have accessory for travelers of all types.

With their convenience, versatility, and numerous features, these watches can enhance your travel experience in ways you never thought possible. So if you’re planning your next adventure, be sure to consider investing in a GPS watch to take the first step towards seamless travel.

Understanding GPS Watches

What are GPS watches?

Let’s get one thing straight – GPS watches are not just regular timepieces. They are much more than that! Gone are the days when a watch was only meant to tell you the time.

Today, a GPS watch is equipped with advanced location tracking technology that allows you to track your every move, monitor your fitness activities, and even help you navigate unfamiliar territories with ease. A GPS watch is essentially a wearable device that uses satellite navigation to track your location and movement.

It connects to satellites orbiting the earth and uses triangulation to determine your exact location. It then uses this information to plot your movements on a map.

How do they work?

GPS watches work by connecting to a network of satellites orbiting the earth. These satellites transmit signals that are picked up by the watch, which then calculates your exact location based on the time it takes for each signal to reach it.

The technology behind GPS watches is incredibly sophisticated but also very user-friendly. Most watches come equipped with easy-to-use interfaces that allow you to access various features like mapping, waypoints, routes, and fitness tracking.

Different types of GPS watches available in the market

There are different types of GPS watches available in the market today tailored for various purposes such as fitness tracking or outdoor activities like hiking or biking. For example, some models come with features like altitude measurement or heart rate monitoring which is useful when engaging in activities such as mountain climbing or running.

Other models have built-in compasses allowing users better navigation experience compared to those without one. It’s important before buying any model one must be sure what their intended use for the gadget will be so as not just splurging money on superfluous functionality they won’t need.

Overall choosing what kind of gps watch can be determined by what features are needed for your intended use. The different types allow for GPS watches to cater to various activity types and interests.

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The Benefits of Traveling with a GPS Watch

GPS watches have become a must-have accessory for travellers around the world. With their location tracking and mapping features, fitness tracking capabilities, emergency SOS features and convenient timekeeping functions, these watches can greatly enhance your travel experience. Below we’ll explore the top benefits of traveling with a GPS watch.

Location Tracking and Mapping Features

One of the biggest advantages of using a GPS watch while traveling is its ability to track your location accurately. This feature is especially useful when exploring unfamiliar places or when out hiking in the wilderness.

With your watch tracking your location in real-time, you can easily navigate through new territories without getting lost. Mapping features are also incredibly helpful as they allow you to view maps directly on your watch.

You can set waypoints and routes that will guide you towards specific destinations or even back to where you started from. The best part is that most GPS watches come with preloaded maps that can be used offline so you don’t have to worry about losing connection while exploring new areas.

Fitness Tracking Capabilities for Outdoor Activities

If you’re an outdoor enthusiast who enjoys activities like hiking, biking or running, then a GPS watch is perfect for you. These watches come equipped with fitness tracking capabilities that allow you to monitor important metrics like heart rate, distance traveled, calories burned and more.

Not only does this help keep track of your progress during these activities but it also ensures that you stay safe by monitoring vital signs in case of an emergency situation. Additionally, with different modes available for each activity type (e.g., trail-running mode or mountain biking mode), these watches ensure that each activity is accurately tracked.

Emergency SOS Features for Safety

When traveling to remote locations or participating in outdoor activities like hiking and camping, having an emergency SOS feature on your GPS watch can be a lifesaver. Many GPS watches come equipped with this feature, allowing you to send out an alert to emergency services or loved ones in case of an emergency.

These features often include automatic location sharing, so responders can quickly locate you in case of a fall or injury. Some also come with additional features like compasses and barometers which can provide even more useful information in emergency situations.

Convenient Timekeeping Functions

GPS watches are incredibly convenient as timekeeping devices. These watches provide accurate timekeeping even when traveling through different time zones and can be easily customized to display the time in your local area.

Some GPS watches also come equipped with additional features like alarms, timers, and stopwatches which can be useful for keeping track of schedules during travels. With all these benefits combined, it’s no wonder that GPS watches have become such an important tool for travelers around the world.

Choosing the Right GPS Watch for Traveling

Battery life: The Key to a Great GPS Watch

When it comes to selecting a GPS watch for traveling, battery life is perhaps the most critical factor to consider. Running out of juice in the middle of a trip can be a real bummer, especially if you need your watch for navigation or fitness tracking. So, how long should your watch’s battery last?

My recommendation is at least five days of regular usage before requiring a recharge. This should give you enough time to explore around without worrying about your watch dying on you.

Durability: Built to Last

Traveling can be hard on gear, so it’s important that your GPS watch is built tough enough to handle whatever comes its way. A durable watch should be able to withstand bumps, scrapes, and even accidental drops without breaking or malfunctioning. Look for watches with rugged designs and shock-resistant materials like metal or plastic casing around the display.

Water Resistance: For the Adventurous Traveller

Water resistance is another vital feature that every traveler should consider when selecting a GPS watch. Whether you’re hiking through rainforests or swimming in crystal-clear waters, having a water-resistant watch means you don’t have to remove it every time you come across water bodies. Look for watches with an IP rating of 68 as these offer full protection against dust and long-term immersion in water.

Compatibility with Other Devices: More Options Are Better

Make sure your GPS watch is compatible with other devices such as smartphones and laptops. This not only makes it easier to sync data from different devices but also increases the functionality of your device as well as ease-of-use while on-the-go! Ideally, choose watches that offer Bluetooth connectivity so that they can easily sync data without much effort.

Choosing the right GPS watch for traveling is crucial if you want to have a successful trip. With battery life, durability, water resistance and compatibility with other devices being essential factors to consider.

Opt for a watch that has all these features and more so that you can have peace of mind while exploring new places. After all, nothing beats having a reliable companion on your wrist as you explore the world!

Using Your GPS Watch While Traveling

Navigating Unfamiliar Territories with Ease: Using Maps, Waypoints, and Routes on Your Watch

One of the biggest advantages of using a GPS watch while traveling is the ability to navigate through unfamiliar territories with ease. Whether you’re hiking in a national park or exploring a new city, your GPS watch can guide you to your destination and ensure that you never get lost. Most GPS watches come with built-in maps that allow you to see your exact location in real-time.

You can use these maps to plan out your route ahead of time or adjust your path on the fly if you need to make a detour. The watch also allows you to drop waypoints along the way so that you can easily return to important locations later.

For adventurers who love exploring off the beaten path, GPS watches are especially useful as they can track routes even when there are no trails or roads. You can create custom routes on your device and follow it with confidence knowing that it is guiding you in the right direction.

Tracking Fitness Activities: Hiking, Biking, Running etc.

If fitness is an important part of your life even while traveling, then a GPS watch is an essential piece of gear for tracking all sorts of activities like hiking, biking and running. Most GPS watches come equipped with sensors that track metrics like distance traveled, pace/speed, heart rate among others giving accurate data which helps monitor progress over time.

Additionally these devices often include activity profiles specifically designed for each type of activity making it easy to switch between them without needing different devices. Being able to keep track one’s fitness goals while exploring an exotic locale adds another layer of satisfaction and motivation beyond just enjoying scenery along the way.

Staying Safe and Secure: SOS Features and Location Sharing Options

When traveling alone or in remote areas, safety is always a concern. A GPS watch can help ease that fear by providing several features to keep you safe.

Most GPS watches come with an emergency SOS feature that can alert authorities or loved ones in case of an emergency. This feature can be activated with a single button press and sends out your location to designated contacts along with a customized message.

Additionally, some watches allow for real-time location sharing through apps so that friends or family members can track your whereabouts on their own devices. This way, even if something does go wrong, someone will always know exactly where you are.

Using a GPS watch while traveling is the best way to ensure a safe and enjoyable adventure. With the ability to navigate easily through unfamiliar territories, track fitness activities and stay secure with SOS features and location sharing options, it’s no wonder why these timepieces continue to grow in popularity among travelers worldwide.

Top Picks for Best GPS Watches for Travelers (with brief reviews)

The Garmin Fenix 6 Pro Solar Edition

If you’re looking for the ultimate GPS watch, look no further than the Garmin Fenix 6 Pro Solar Edition. This watch is the perfect blend of style, functionality, and durability.

The solar charging feature alone makes this watch a standout option by allowing you to spend more time exploring and less time charging. The Fenix 6 Pro Solar Edition has an impressive array of features including topographical maps, heart rate monitoring, music storage and playback, and activity tracking.

It’s perfect for outdoor enthusiasts who want to track their every move with confidence. The watch also has a long battery life that allows it to function for up to two weeks in smartwatch mode or up to 21 days in battery saver mode.

The only downside of this watch is its price tag. It’s definitely not cheap but if you’re someone who values quality over cost then investing in the Garmin Fenix 6 Pro Solar Edition will be worth every penny.

The Suunto 9 Baro Titanium

If you’re on the hunt for a durable GPS watch that can withstand extreme conditions then the Suunto 9 Baro Titanium is an excellent option. This watch comes with a rugged titanium case and sapphire crystal glass which makes it resistant to scratches and damage from falls or other accidents. One standout feature of this watch is its battery life which lasts up to 120 hours in continuous use with GPS tracking on high accuracy mode or up to two weeks in normal use without GPS enabled.

Additionally, its barometer sensor provides accurate altitude information which is great when mountain climbing or hiking through uneven terrains. Although some may find this watch bulky compared with others on the market, it’s a perfect fit for those who enjoy outdoor activities and want their GPS watch to perform in all conditions.

The Polar Grit X

The Polar Grit X is a no-nonsense GPS watch that packs in plenty of features without sacrificing style. It’s a great option for those who don’t want to break the bank but still want a high-quality GPS watch.

This watch has an accurate GPS system, long battery life that lasts up to 40 hours with GPS enabled or up to seven days without it. It also includes an altimeter sensor which provides you with precise information about your elevation, making it ideal for activities such as hiking or mountain biking where changes in altitude can affect your performance.

In addition, this watch comes with training features like hill splitter which helps you track your uphill and downhill progress during long distance runs and hikes. However, the downside of this watch is its lack of map functionality which means you’ll need to rely on other devices or maps for navigation.

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Choosing the right GPS watch for traveling depends on what you’re looking for in terms of durability, battery life, functionality, and price point. However, these three watches are some of the best options available on the market today.

The Garmin Fenix 6 Pro Solar Edition is perfect if money is not an issue and you prioritize advanced features like topographical maps and music storage. The Suunto 9 Baro Titanium is suitable if durability is a top priority along with long-lasting battery life.

The Polar Grit X offers excellent performance at an affordable price point but lacks map functionality. Any of these watches will be an excellent addition to your travel gear arsenal as they provide reliable location tracking along with fitness tracking capabilities and emergency SOS features should anything go wrong while you’re on your adventure.

Conclusion: GPS Watches are an Excellent Travel Companion

After carefully exploring the world of GPS watches, it is clear that they make an excellent travel companion. Their location tracking and mapping features are incredibly helpful for navigating unfamiliar territories with ease.

The fitness tracking capabilities for outdoor activities such as hiking, biking, and running can help you record your progress and stay motivated. And in case of emergencies, the SOS features can provide peace of mind.

Additionally, the convenient timekeeping functions allow you to keep track of time in multiple time zones without having to adjust your watch manually. This feature is particularly helpful for frequent travelers who jet-set across different countries and continents.

But with so many options available on the market, it can be overwhelming to choose the right GPS watch for your travel needs. Consider factors such as battery life, durability, water resistance, compatibility with other devices before making a decision.

If you’re planning a trip or just love to explore new places frequently then investing in a GPS watch is definitely worth considering. It’s a valuable tool that offers endless possibilities when it comes to traveling and staying fit at the same time.

So why not give one a try? Who knows what adventure awaits!


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