If you plan on heading out on the open seas, you will need a navigational system. After all, you don’t want to be stranded in uncharted waters. Fortunately, today mariners can download navigation apps on their smartphones or tablets.
Getting a navigation system can cost a fortune. So, it is a good thing that marine navigation apps provide reliable alternatives. However, with tons of apps available, it can be difficult to choose the best app for you.
Here are the best marine navigation apps you can use on both iOS and Android devices.
With C-MAP, you get a hassle-free app you can use to plan your sailing trips. The app provides details such as tracks in the water, traffic, and weather. It allows sailors to plot the safest path to take before setting sail.
The best thing is that you can download your plans to use them offline. So, you won’t have to worry about a poor internet connection. It allows you to customize your maps, tracks, waypoints and save routes all of which are accessible offline.
You can use the app for fishing, cruising, or sailing. The downside is that the free version lets you use the maps online.
This is another amazing marine navigation apps to make your sailing experience enjoyable. It even provides wind data that you input or download on the go. So, the app will let you figure out the strength of the wind at sea and establish how long it will take to reach your destination.
The app displays optimal tacks on a chart. Also, the wind calculations in this app provide are valuable for any sailor. Regardless of whether you are racing or cruising, it is always good to establish the best heading.
The app constantly updates optimal tacks. You can save waypoints, rename them and even show optimal tacks. With the ActiveCaptain feature, you get an up-to-date cruising guide.
Memory-Map is a comprehensive app that turns your smartphone or tablet into a fully-fledged marine chart plotter and onshore GPS. The app allows downloading of maps on the fly so that they can be used online.
It can act as a GPS navigator but also is great for planning, loading maps, routes, and waypoints on your mobile device. The app provides more detailed maps and subscriptions with a free trial period.
Memory-Map gives you access to various worldwide maps. Also, the app gives the ability to create and edit routes and marks as well as an automatic download of your current map location.
Another great marine navigation app is the iNavX app. It is the perfect app if you find the other complex features in other marine navigation apps daunting. The app provides a clear instrument dashboard that gives you access to all the details you need.
It is the right app for those who like to change routes fast. iNavX lets you redraw a route and zoom with ease. The app lets users access a broad set of marine maps and charts from several providers.
It lets sailors plan sailing routes and route management. What’s more, it allows them to remember their sailing locations through geotagging. The app also provides forecasts that include swells, winds, and currents. iNavX is also good for discovering new fishing spots.
Navionics is a popular and expensive marine navigation app. It is not surprising considering the various features it offers its users. The app gives you access to all the navigation charts you need.
It is an indispensable cruising, diving, fishing, and sailing app. The app comes with detailed lake and marine nautical charts as well the advanced features you get on the best GPS plotters. With this app, you get to try all the features and charts for a limited time free of charge.
The app offers excellent Navionics Gold vector charts with satellite, map, and terrain overlays free of charge. The intuitive user interface supports panning and zooming. You can even share tracks through social media or email. To access advanced features like auto-routing and sonar charts, you have to buy in-app enhancements.
SailFreeGPS is a simple marine navigation app that offers various features to help you in your trip. Its display shows your position, course, distance, and speed. It even includes a graph for showing the tide and current conditions.
Cruising in the open seas is fun especially when going to places you have never visited. However, it can be a disaster if you are endlessly searching the right route. This app by a sailor can be handy since it shows your track on a map.
However, it is not the most reliable. For instance, the compass is tricky since sometimes it is not accurate or even not calibrated at all. Besides, you can use the app on any sail or motor boat. The app also lets you store a maximum of 5 waypoints and even activate a GoTo function with ETA.
i-Boating is a marine navigation app the offers offline nautical charts, lake contour maps, and inland river navigation charts. It is ideal for various activities such as kayaking, sailing, and fishing.
The app even comes with a route assistance feature that guides you through the route you created. It even provides you with current and tide forecasts to protect you from harm.
The app uses a library of vector charts from official cartography sources like the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. To plan a route, you only need to drag and dropping and adding waypoints as necessary.
If you are considering sailing around Europe and the Mediterranean, consider Navily. The app has partnered with over 700 marinas in Europe. So, the app will help you secure a berth in a few clicks. What’s more, you get real-time details about the marinas including pricing, event, services, operating hours, and facilities.
Besides the app provides users with weather forecasts, automatic itineraries, and distance calculation. The app is also available in Italian, French, Spanish, and German.