Feb 24, 2024

Cheapest Way to GPS Track a Car: Tips and Tricks

Cheapest Way to GPS Track a Car: Tips and Tricks

GPS tracking technology has become increasingly popular in recent years, especially for those who want to keep track of their vehicles. Whether you are a business owner with a fleet of vehicles or a concerned parent who wants to monitor their teenager's driving habits, GPS tracking is a useful tool. However, the cost of GPS tracking devices and services can be a barrier for many people. In this article, we will explore the cheapest ways to GPS track a car, so you can keep an eye on your vehicle without breaking the bank.

A car with a small GPS device attached to the dashboard, displaying the vehicle's location on a digital map

One of the most affordable options for GPS tracking is using a smartphone app. Many GPS tracking apps are available for free or at a low cost, and they can be easily installed on a smartphone. By using the GPS technology built into the phone, you can track the location of your car in real-time. Some apps even offer additional features such as alerts for speeding or leaving a designated area.

Another option for cheap GPS tracking is purchasing a standalone GPS tracking device. These devices can be purchased for as little as $20 and do not require a monthly subscription fee. They are typically small and can be easily hidden in a car. However, it is important to note that these devices may not have as many features as more expensive options, and they may not be as accurate.

Understanding GPS Tracking Technology

A car equipped with a GPS tracking device, displaying its location on a digital map with a clear signal and accuracy

GPS tracking technology has become increasingly popular and affordable in recent years. It is now possible to track a car using a GPS tracker without breaking the bank. However, before diving into the cheapest options available, it is important to understand the basics of GPS tracking technology.

GPS Tracker Fundamentals

A GPS tracker is a device that uses the Global Positioning System (GPS) to determine the location of a vehicle. The device communicates with GPS satellites to determine the vehicle's location, speed, and direction. The information is then transmitted to a server or a mobile app, allowing the user to track the vehicle in real-time or periodically.

There are two types of GPS trackers: hardwired and portable. Hardwired GPS trackers are installed directly into the vehicle's electrical system, while portable GPS trackers can be easily moved from one vehicle to another.

GPS trackers can also vary in terms of their features and capabilities. Some GPS trackers offer real-time tracking, while others provide periodic updates. Some GPS trackers can also monitor the vehicle's fuel level, engine status, and other parameters.

Real-Time Tracking vs. Periodic Updates

Real-time tracking is a feature that allows the user to track the vehicle's location in real-time. This means that the user can see the vehicle's location on a map as it moves. Real-time tracking is useful for fleet management, where the user needs to monitor the location of multiple vehicles at the same time.

Periodic updates, on the other hand, provide the user with the vehicle's location at set intervals, such as every 5 minutes or every hour. This feature is useful for monitoring a single vehicle and can be less expensive than real-time tracking.

In conclusion, understanding the fundamentals of GPS tracking technology is essential before choosing the cheapest option available. GPS trackers can vary in terms of their features and capabilities, and choosing the right one depends on the user's specific needs. Real-time tracking and periodic updates are two of the most common features available, and each has its own advantages.

Selecting the Right GPS Tracker

A hand reaches for a small GPS tracker on a cluttered desk, surrounded by various car models and maps. The tracker is labeled "cheapest way to gps track a car."

When it comes to selecting the right GPS tracker, there are a few key features to consider. In this section, we will explore the different types of GPS trackers available, the key features to consider, and battery life and power options.

Types of GPS Trackers

There are two main types of GPS trackers: hardwired and portable. Hardwired GPS trackers are installed directly into the vehicle's electrical system, while portable GPS trackers can be easily moved from one vehicle to another.

Portable GPS trackers are further divided into two categories: battery-powered and rechargeable battery-powered. Battery-powered GPS trackers are affordable and compact, but they have limited battery life and require frequent battery replacement. Rechargeable battery-powered GPS trackers, on the other hand, are more versatile and can be used for extended periods without the need for battery replacement.

Some popular portable GPS trackers include Spytec, LandAirSea 54, and Bouncie. These trackers are affordable, compact, and waterproof, making them ideal for use in harsh environments.

Key Features to Consider

When selecting a GPS tracker, there are several key features to consider. The first is the type of network the tracker uses. LTE networks offer real-time tracking and are more reliable than 3G networks.

Another important feature to consider is the type of SIM card the tracker uses. Some GPS trackers require a monthly fee or subscription fee, while others do not. It is important to choose a tracker that fits your budget and needs.

Finally, it is important to consider the price and warranty of the GPS tracker. Some GPS trackers come with a lifetime warranty, while others only offer a limited warranty. It is important to choose a tracker that is affordable and comes with a warranty that meets your needs.

Battery Life and Power Options

Battery life and power options are also important factors to consider when selecting a GPS tracker. Rechargeable battery-powered GPS trackers are more versatile and can be used for extended periods without the need for battery replacement.

Hardwired GPS trackers, on the other hand, are more reliable and do not require battery replacement. They are ideal for use in vehicles that are used frequently and require constant tracking.

In conclusion, selecting the right GPS tracker requires careful consideration of the type of tracker, key features, and battery life and power options. By choosing a tracker that fits your budget and needs, you can ensure that your vehicle is always tracked and protected.

GPS Tracker Installation and Usage

A hand holding a GPS tracker, placing it under a car's dashboard. The tracker is connected to a mobile device, showing the car's location on a map

Installation Process

The installation process of a GPS tracker is relatively simple and can be done by anyone with basic technical knowledge. The first step is to choose the right GPS tracker that suits your needs and budget. Once you have purchased the GPS tracker, you need to connect it to the car's battery. The GPS tracker comes with a set of wires that need to be connected to the car's battery.

After connecting the GPS tracker to the battery, you need to hide it in a secure location in the car. This will prevent the GPS tracker from getting damaged or stolen. Once the GPS tracker is installed, you need to activate it by following the instructions provided by the manufacturer.

Mobile App and Dashboard Usage

After the GPS tracker is installed and activated, you can start using the mobile app and dashboard provided by the manufacturer. The mobile app and dashboard allow you to track the car's location in real-time, view the car's speed and direction, and set up geofences.

The mobile app and dashboard also provide you with a history of the car's movements, which can be useful if you want to track the car's usage over a period of time. In addition, the mobile app and dashboard provide you with alerts and notifications if the car enters or exits a geofence, or if there is an emergency or anti-theft situation.

Alerts and Notifications

The GPS tracker comes with a range of alerts and notifications that can be customized to suit your needs. For example, you can set up alerts for when the car enters or exits a geofence, when the car is speeding, or when the car is being driven outside of certain hours.

In addition, the GPS tracker comes with emergency and anti-theft alerts. These alerts notify you if the car is involved in an accident or if it is being stolen. The GPS tracker can also be set up to send alerts to multiple users, such as family members or employees.

Overall, the GPS tracker is an affordable and effective way to track your car's location and movements. With the mobile app and dashboard, you can monitor your car in real-time and receive alerts and notifications for any unusual activity.

Cost Considerations

A car driving on a road with a GPS tracker attached to the dashboard, showing cost considerations and affordability in the design

When it comes to GPS tracking a car, cost is an important consideration. There are several factors that can affect the total ownership cost of a GPS tracking system. In this section, we will discuss two important cost considerations: understanding subscription fees and calculating total ownership cost.

Understanding Subscription Fees

Most GPS tracking systems require a monthly subscription fee to use the service. The subscription fee covers the cost of accessing the GPS tracking data and the associated software. The subscription fee can vary depending on the provider, the level of service, and the number of vehicles being tracked.

It is important to understand the subscription fees before selecting a GPS tracking system. Some providers offer different levels of service, with different subscription fees. It is important to compare the costs and features of different providers to find the best fit for your needs.

Calculating Total Ownership Cost

When calculating the total ownership cost of a GPS tracking system, it is important to consider all of the associated costs. This includes the cost of the hardware, installation, and subscription fees.

The cost of the hardware can vary depending on the type of GPS tracking system and the number of vehicles being tracked. Some providers offer discounts for purchasing multiple units.

Installation costs can also vary depending on the complexity of the installation and the number of vehicles being tracked. Some providers offer installation services, while others require the user to install the hardware themselves.

In addition to the hardware and installation costs, the subscription fees must also be factored into the total ownership cost. It is important to consider the subscription fees over the lifetime of the GPS tracking system, as some providers offer discounts for longer-term contracts.

Overall, it is important to carefully consider the cost of a GPS tracking system before selecting a provider. By understanding the subscription fees and calculating the total ownership cost, users can make an informed decision that meets their needs and budget.

Legal and Security Aspects

A car equipped with a discreet GPS tracking device, securely installed under the dashboard, transmitting real-time location data to a designated server

Privacy and Consent

When it comes to GPS tracking, privacy concerns are often raised. In most countries, it is illegal to track a person's movements without their consent. Therefore, it is important to obtain the necessary consent before installing a GPS tracking device in a vehicle.

The consent can be obtained in various ways, including written consent, verbal consent, or through a signed agreement. It is also important to inform the driver or owner of the vehicle about the purpose of the tracking device and how the information collected will be used.

To ensure privacy, it is recommended to only track the vehicle during working hours or when it is being used for business purposes. Additionally, it is important to protect the data collected by the GPS tracking device and ensure that it is not shared with unauthorized persons.

Theft Prevention and Recovery

GPS tracking can also be used as an anti-theft measure. In the event of a theft, the GPS tracking device can help locate the stolen vehicle and assist in its recovery.

To ensure the effectiveness of the GPS tracking device in preventing theft, it is important to install it in a hidden location where it cannot be easily detected or removed. It is also recommended to use a GPS tracking device that has a backup battery in case the vehicle's battery is disconnected.

In case of an emergency, GPS tracking can also be used to alert authorities and provide them with the location of the vehicle. This can be especially useful in situations where a driver or passenger is in danger or requires medical assistance.

Overall, while GPS tracking can be a useful tool for security and anti-theft measures, it is important to consider the legal and privacy aspects before installing a GPS tracking device in a vehicle. Obtaining consent and protecting the data collected can help ensure that the use of GPS tracking is both legal and ethical.

Additional Uses and Features

A car with a GPS tracker attached to the dashboard, displaying real-time location on a digital map

Vehicle Health and Maintenance

In addition to tracking the location of a car, a GPS tracking device can also provide valuable information about the health and maintenance of the vehicle. Some GPS trackers, such as the Bouncie Car GPS Tracker, can monitor the battery voltage, engine health, and other diagnostic information. This can help car owners identify potential issues before they become major problems, saving them time and money on repairs.

Furthermore, Bouncie Car GPS Tracker provides real-time vehicle health updates, which can be accessed via the Bouncie GPS app. This feature allows car owners to stay on top of their vehicle's maintenance needs and schedule service appointments as needed.

Tracking for Luggage, Pets, and More

GPS tracking devices are not just limited to tracking cars. They can also be used to track luggage, pets, and other valuable items. This can be especially useful for travelers who want to keep an eye on their luggage during transit or pet owners who want to ensure their furry friends stay safe and secure.

The Bouncie GPS tracker, for example, is small and lightweight, making it easy to attach to a pet's collar or slip into a suitcase. The tracker can then be monitored via the Bouncie GPS app, which provides real-time location updates and alerts if the device moves outside a designated area.

Overall, GPS tracking devices such as the Bouncie Car GPS Tracker offer a range of additional uses and features beyond simple location tracking. Whether you're looking to monitor your vehicle's health or keep track of your pets and luggage, a GPS tracker can provide valuable peace of mind and security.

Choosing the Best GPS Tracker Brands

A car parked in a garage, with a GPS tracker device being installed underneath the dashboard. The brand logo of the tracker is prominently displayed on the packaging

When it comes to GPS tracking for cars, choosing the right brand can make all the difference. Here are some of the top GPS tracker brands to consider:

Top GPS Tracker Models

LandAirSea 54 GPS Tracker

The LandAirSea 54 GPS Tracker is a popular choice for its compact size and reliable performance. It offers real-time tracking, geofencing, and alerts for speeding and other events. It also has a long battery life, making it a great option for long-term tracking.

Spytec GL300 GPS Tracker

The Spytec GL300 GPS Tracker is another popular option, known for its accuracy and reliability. It offers real-time tracking, geofencing, and alerts for speeding and other events. It also has a long battery life and is easy to set up and use.

Bouncie Car GPS Tracker

The Bouncie Car GPS Tracker is a newer option on the market, but it has already gained a reputation for its affordability and ease of use. It offers real-time tracking, trip history, and alerts for speeding and other events. It also has a low monthly fee, making it a great option for those on a budget.

Customer Reviews and Reliability

When choosing a GPS tracker brand, it's important to consider customer reviews and reliability. Look for brands that have a track record of providing reliable products and excellent customer support.

One brand that stands out in this regard is Tracki. They offer a range of GPS tracking devices for cars, including the Tracki 2021 Model Mini Real time GPS Tracker. This device has received high praise from customers for its accuracy, reliability, and ease of use. It also comes with 24/7 customer support, ensuring that you always have help when you need it.

In conclusion, when choosing a GPS tracker for your car, it's important to consider factors such as reliability, customer support, and affordability. With the right brand and model, you can enjoy peace of mind knowing that your car is always safe and secure.

Advanced GPS Tracking Applications

A car equipped with GPS tracking device, pinpointed on a digital map with route and location data displayed on a screen

GPS tracking technology has come a long way over the years and has become an essential tool for fleet management and personal vehicle tracking. With advanced GPS tracking applications, businesses and individuals can track their vehicles in real-time, monitor driving habits, receive vehicle health updates, and respond to emergencies. In this section, we will explore two advanced GPS tracking applications: Fleet Management and Productivity, and Personal Vehicle Tracking.

Fleet Management and Productivity

Fleet Management is a critical aspect of any business that operates a fleet of vehicles. With GPS tracking technology, businesses can monitor their vehicles' location, speed, and driving behavior, which can help improve productivity and reduce operational costs. GPS tracking can also provide real-time updates on vehicle health, such as fuel levels and engine diagnostics, allowing businesses to proactively schedule maintenance and repairs.

One of the most significant benefits of GPS tracking for fleet management is the ability to create geo-fences. A geo-fence is a virtual boundary that can be set around a specific area, such as a job site or a customer location. When a vehicle enters or exits a geo-fence, the business can receive an alert, allowing them to monitor their vehicles' movements and ensure they are being used for their intended purpose.

Personal Vehicle Tracking

GPS tracking is not just for businesses; it can also be a useful tool for personal vehicle tracking. With GPS tracking technology, individuals can monitor their vehicle's location and driving behavior, helping them keep track of their loved ones' safety and whereabouts.

Parents, for example, can use GPS tracking to monitor their teenage drivers' driving habits, such as speed and location, helping them identify and correct any unsafe driving behaviors. GPS tracking can also be useful in emergencies, allowing individuals to quickly locate their vehicle and receive assistance.

In conclusion, advanced GPS tracking applications have become an essential tool for fleet management and personal vehicle tracking. With real-time updates on vehicle location, driving behavior, and health, businesses and individuals can improve productivity, reduce operational costs, and ensure the safety of their loved ones.

Troubleshooting and Support

A mechanic connecting GPS device to car's OBD port, troubleshooting and providing support

Common GPS Tracker Issues

Despite the reliability of GPS trackers, issues may arise with their functionality. Some common issues users may encounter include poor signal strength, inaccurate location readings, and battery life problems.

If you experience any of these issues, it is recommended to first check the tracker's settings to ensure they are configured correctly. Additionally, checking for any physical obstructions or interference that may be affecting the signal can also help improve the accuracy of location readings.

If the issue persists, contacting customer support may be necessary. Most GPS tracker manufacturers offer 24/7 customer support to assist with any issues that may arise.

Warranty and Customer Support

When purchasing a GPS tracker, it is important to consider the warranty and customer support options available. Some manufacturers offer a lifetime warranty for their products, while others may only offer a limited warranty.

It is recommended to read customer reviews and research the manufacturer's reputation for customer support before making a purchase. This can help ensure that any issues that may arise are quickly and effectively resolved. Additionally, some manufacturers may offer roadside assistance or check engine light monitoring as part of their customer support services.

In the event of any issues with the GPS tracker, contacting customer support should be the first step. Most manufacturers offer various channels of communication, including phone, email, and live chat support. It is recommended to have the tracker's serial number and purchase information readily available when contacting customer support to expedite the process.

Conclusion

A car equipped with a GPS tracking device, showing the route and location on a digital map

In conclusion, there are several options available for those looking for an affordable way to GPS track their car. By comparing the features and prices of different GPS tracking devices, it is possible to find a solution that meets both your needs and budget.

One cost-effective option is to use a smartphone tracking app, which can be downloaded for free or at a low cost. However, it is important to note that these apps may have limited functionality and may not be as reliable as dedicated GPS tracking devices.

Another option is to purchase a standalone GPS tracker, which can be found for as little as $20. These devices offer more advanced features such as real-time tracking and geofencing, but may require a monthly subscription fee for access to the tracking data.

For those on a tight budget, a GPS tracker with a one-time purchase cost and no subscription fee may be the best option. However, it is important to ensure that the device has reliable tracking and reporting capabilities.

Overall, it is important to carefully consider your needs and budget when selecting a GPS tracking solution for your car. With the right device, you can have peace of mind knowing that your vehicle is always within reach.