By Keri Algar
SYDNEY, NSW: It’s already November and summer holiday plans are well under way throughout Australian households as families pick which direction to travel in, how far to go and for how long. Enter Navman’s recently released MY Series and its logical marriage with Lonely Planet travel guides and road trip recommendations.
Over 257,000,000 car trips are taken in Australia each year, 71 per cent of which are in a private vehicle, according to Shawn Low, Lonely Planet’s Asia Pacific travel editor. “Australia is one of our biggest sellers. Domestic travel is a big thing and the statistics, well, it’s quite staggering really, so this partnership comes at a good time,” said Low yesterday at a lunch hosted by Navman and GPS mapping partner Navteq.
Navman is eager to promote the return of ‘spontaneous Aussie car trips’ by combining its navigation device with travel guides. This added feature is one of 12 other new features released this year by Navman in what Wendy Hammond, marketing director at Navman ANZ describes as an “incredibly competitive” category.
Thirty per cent of Australians surveyed by Navman said they like to ‘jump in the car with no idea of where they may end up’, according to Hammond. “Our research showed a further 29 per cent of people had taken spontaneous drives, but ‘years ago’ while almost 40 per cent said they had never done this,” said Hammond.
“We’re giving Australians the ability to just jump in the car safe in the knowledge they will be able to find a place to stay, a restaurant to visit, a safe camping spot, and so on, without having to search for the local tourist information office.”
“The best trips are often those that aren’t planned weeks or months in advance – they are the spontaneous ones. By using our new Navman MY75T (RRP $399), you can find inspiration in the glovebox and make the most of your weekends or days off by getting out of your routine.”
Additional features in the MY Series include spoken landmark guidance (for example, ‘turn left at the church’ instead of ‘turn left in 100 metres’), trip overviews and new Smart Route information based on traffic research by SUNA – including built-in historical data to accommodate for variations between peak traffic times or locations. The devices also include a three year subscription to map upgrades and a two year warranty.