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Navigator Tips

We would like to acknowledge that this material was initially prepared by Bob Ellis of Oregon Region PCA .

Have you ever been on a club drive and watched a car ahead of you suddenly makes a U turn followed by others, or get separated at a traffic light finding that you are now the lead for the cars behind!  We think this is where the navigator’s role becomes essential to make a successful, stress free day.
Our goal is for everyone to have a good experience and we feel an active navigator is a key piece in reaching that goal.
If you are typically in the navigator’s seat we would like to offer some suggestions to assist.

  • Be prepared before starting out. Have a clipboard to hold the route instruction so that you can make notes as you go.
  • Have a couple of pencils or pens to write with.
  • At the participant briefing, get clarification on the turn by turn directions if there is anything unclear to you.
  • When the drive starts, remind your driver to zero the tripometer at the appropriate place according to the instructions.
  • Read the instructions out loud and monitor the tripometer mileage.
  • Be aware the drive has been electronically calculated, so your mileage reading may vary slightly.
  • Part of your job is to help look for signage where you will need to turn.
  • As the drive progresses, continue reading instructions aloud and cross-check the mileage on the directions compared to the tripometer.
  • Keep track of where you are on the instruction sheet by checking off or crossing out each turn as it is completed. Adding this step will help you find your place quickly and avoid skipping a step.
  • Paying extremely close attention to the mileage indicated for some actions such as a turn can be one of the most important factors in staying on the correct course. Note: Your mileage may vary, so sometimes things come up a bit earlier or later than noted. Sometimes the road may have more than one name and by knowing what mileage the turn should be taken at you can avoid that dreaded “off course” U-turn.
  • An active navigator ensures that your driver is not dependent on the site of the car ahead in busy traffic or at traffic lights.