The best GPS tracker on the market is . . . completely dependent on what you’re tracking. That’s why we’ve chosen the best-of-the-best for the most popular tracking scenarios: cars, kids, seniors, pets, and items. If our top picks don’t match your needs, we’ll guide you to some other options at the end of each section. Let’s get trackin’!
Best GPS Trackers of 2022
Best GPS trackers
- : Best car GPS tracker
- : Best kids GPS tracker
- : Best senior GPS tracker
- : Best pet GPS tracker
- : Best luggage or item tracker
Compare the best GPS trackers
Max battery life
|Best for vehicles||$89.99||$6.58/mo.||N/A||Maintenance reminders||View on Amazon||Read Review|
|Best for kids||$149.99||$8.99/mo.||10 days||Artificial intelligence||View on Amazon||Read Review|
|Best for seniors||$99.99||$24.99/mo.||5 days||Automatic fall detection||View on Aloe Care||Read Review|
|Best for pets||$149.95||$12.99/mo.||20 days||Activity monitoring||View on Amazon||Read Review|
|Best for items||$29.00||$0.00/mo.||1 year||Precision finding||View on Amazon||Read Review|
1. Vyncs: Best vehicle tracker
Vyncs is our favorite GPS tracker for vehicles because it tracks everything. But for now, let’s talk about GPS: Vyncs includes location updates every three minutes when the ignition is on and every hour when it’s off. With an upgraded subscription, you can get 15-, 30-, and 60-second updates instead. You’ll see the exact address where the car was turned off and, as with other GPS trackers, can set up geofencing alerts.
How Vyncs works
The Vyncs vehicle tracker plugs directly into the On-Board Diagnostics (OBD) port on your car and shares the car’s battery power, so you never have to worry about recharging it. It transmits data via the AT&T / T-Mobile 4G network, which covers the vast majority of the US. We recommend checking an AT&T coverage map before buying to ensure you don’t live near one of AT&T’s coverage gaps.
You can access Vyncs data from a web browser or Android/iOS app.
Vyncs’ marketing is a little misleading in one aspect: their website and Amazon listing claim there’s no monthly fee, but that doesn’t mean you don’t pay for a subscription—it’s just billed annually. You get the first year free with your purchase, but some features—like 24/7 roadside assistance—still cost extra.
Vyncs plans range from about $100 to $120 a year. There’s also a $40 activation fee.
Other Vyncs features
Vyncs’s features go above and beyond GPS tracking and geofencing:
- Tamper alerts
- Curfew alerts
- Fuel report
- Fault codes
- Recall alerts
- Battery health and tire pressure reports
- Speeding, rapid acceleration, harsh braking, rough cornering, and idling alerts
The driving performance, curfew, tamper, and geofencing alerts make Vyncs an excellent tool for monitoring new teen drivers and older adults alike.
See more options: 5 Best GPS Vehicle Trackers
2. Jiobit: Best kids tracker
The Jiobit tracker isn’t the most feature-rich kids GPS tracker on the market, but we think it strikes the best balance between capabilities, performance, and price. As you’d expect, Jiobit uses GPS technology to track your child in real-time, and you can set up geofences using GPS data or Wi-Fi signals—which is great for large or multi-story buildings. There’s also a Bluetooth tracking feature that pings you when your child wanders out of range (about 33 feet).
What you should know before buying a Jiobit
The Jiobit has no audio capabilities—a double-edged sword in the world of kids GPS trackers. On the one hand, it won’t be disruptive at school or cause any privacy concerns. On the other hand, you can’t quickly find out what’s wrong after your child pushes the SOS button. You’d need to contact the adults in charge of your child to understand what’s happening—or just head directly to your child’s location.
If there’s an emergency that requires first responders, you can use the app to contact 911. Thanks to Jiobit’s Noonlight integration, dispatchers receive your child’s GPS location—but it costs an extra $6 a month on top of the required monthly fee of $9 or$15 (2-year contract or no contract).
The Jiobit is gray-and-white straight out of the box, but you can buy colored skins on the Jiobit website to make it seem less clinical. Magnetic pins and pouches are also available for attaching the Jiobit to clothing.
Learn more about our testing experience in our full Jiobit review.
See more options: Best Kids GPS Trackers
3. Aloe Care Health Mobile Companion: Best tracker for seniors
We’ve been impressed with the Aloe Care Health Mobile Companion since our very first tests. While we wish it had a slimmer design for comfort and discretion, we have no complaints regarding its GPS technology, audio quality, or professional monitoring response time.
Easy-to-read maps for caregivers
The Mobile Companion gives accurate GPS locations—an unremarkable feat in and of itself—on an easy-to-read, app-based map. It’s the map’s user-friendliness that makes us so enthusiastic about recommending the Mobile Companion. You see a satellite view and have the ability to export the device’s address to your favorite map app for quick directions.
Other senior GPS trackers we’ve tested provide rudimentary maps or rely on text-based location updates. And they certainly don’t give directions.
SOS features for the wearer
The person wearing the device also benefits from Aloe Care Health’s thoughtful designs. For example, there’s a cancellation button on the side to reduce the fear of false alarms—another feature that’s hard to find on GPS trackers for seniors.
In the event of a true emergency, monitors pick up the call in under 40 seconds. And that’s not a number pulled from a marketing pamphlet—that comes from our own hands-on testing experiences. The monitors are easy to hear too.
Would you believe the Mobile Companion is also the most affordable professionally-monitored GPS medical alert? It’s true—the device itself costs $99 and the monthly fee is just under $25. That’s a steal—other brands charge upwards of $40 a month.
And it has automatic fall detection at no extra charge.
The list goes on, so be sure to read our full
love letter to review of Aloe Care Health.
See more options: Best Medical Alert Systems with GPS and GPS Trackers for People With Dementia
4. Whistle GO Explore: Best pet tracker
The Whistle GO Explore (also called the Whistle Health & GPS) is our favorite pet tracker thanks to its impressive 20-day battery life—almost a full week longer than the competition. It also has remote-controlled lights for nighttime escapades and some extra goodies that make its $99/year subscription worth it.
Whistle GO Explore battery life
Battery life is one of the most important features of a pet GPS tracker because you never know how long it will take to find a lost pet. Dogs, for example, can travel for miles and be difficult to approach when they’re scared. If you find yourself in this position, you’ll be glad the tracker’s battery won’t conk out after the first day.
That said, if you frequently ping the Whistle GO Explore for location updates, the battery drains faster. We do recommend charging it on a regular basis to make sure it has plenty of juice just in case your pet does get lost.
Health and activity monitoring
When your pet is exactly where they’re supposed to be, the Whistle GO Explore still pulls its weight by tracking your pet’s health and activity. For example, it detects when your dog scratches an itch, drinks water, sleeps, eats, or licks. Thanks to some nifty graphs on the Whistle app, you can tell if your dog does these things more than usual.
You can also get fitness and feeding recommendations based on your dog’s breed and age. The Whistle GO Explore even tracks workouts so you’ll know if you need to extend your walks.
If you ever have questions about your dog’s health, you can talk to a vet directly through the Whistle app. “Tele-Vet” is automatically included in your Whistle subscription, and communication options include email, chat, phone call, or video call.
See more options: Best GPS Dog Collars and Pet Trackers
5. Apple AirTag: Best luggage and item tracker
Technically, the Apple AirTag is a Bluetooth tracker and not a GPS device. Despite this nuance, AirTags perform the same function as the other trackers on this list—locating whatever they’re attached to. In fact, AirTags outperform GPS trackers when it comes to finding things that are lost right under your nose.
Apple AirTags are precise (if you have the right phone)
The coolest feature of Apple AirTags is called Precision Finding, which turns your phone screen into a compass that points only to your AirTag. Unfortunately, Precision Finding requires an iPhone 11 or better.
Precision Finding also shows exactly how far away the AirTag is, which is where this quarter-sized Bluetooth gadget triumphs over GPS trackers: the app leads you right to the tracker, whereas GPS devices have a margin of error of about 16 feet.
For those of us clutching our old iPhones until the bitter end, AirTags can also be found through a series of beeps. As long as your hearing is good enough to home in on the source of the beeps, you’ll be able to find the AirTag—even if it’s in a pile of laundry or at the bottom of your purse.
AirTags are affordable
We’ve glossed over the best part so far. You don’t have to pay a monthly fee to use AirTags. There’s not even an optional upgrade. It’s just free—which is fair enough since you need a pretty expensive phone to set up AirTags and make the most of them.
Plus, each AirTag is affordable at just under $30.
Disadvantages of Apple AirTags
At this point, you might be wondering why we haven’t crowned these ultra-affordable, ultra-precise trackers the top spot on our list. There are a few limitations to Bluetooth tracker technology—and to AirTags in particular.
First, the AirTag’s location won’t update unless it’s near any Bluetooth-enabled device—within 33 feet, to be exact. It’s not great for huge farmsteads or remote areas.
Second, Bluetooth technology isn’t great at calculating the location of anything in motion. Forget about using an AirTag to get a real-time location update on your car as your newly-licensed teen ventures onto the freeway for the first time. The same issue makes it tough to track runaway pets.
Finally, hiding an AirTag on a valuable item doesn’t guarantee that you’ll be able to track it down if it’s stolen. Apple made it possible for anyone to locate unknown AirTags nearby in order to thwart stalkers. And we’re not dinging that—it was a huge safety issue that needed to be solved. But the flip side is that smart thieves can also find trackers and toss or disable them before taking off with your stuff. In contrast, a well-hidden GPS device doesn’t give itself away.
All in all, Bluetooth trackers like Apple AirTags work best for items like keys, luggage, sports bags, or anything else in danger of being lost but doesn’t move very fast.
To learn more about how they work, check out our Apple AirTags FAQs or read our full Apple AirTag review.
The GPS tracker market is really taking off, so you shouldn’t have trouble finding one that meets your needs or budget if our list didn’t hit the mark. We recommend looking for a combination of GPS and cellular, Wi-Fi, or Bluetooth technology for the most accurate location pings. A long battery life doesn’t hurt either.
Other than that, finding the right GPS tracker for you comes down to personal preference regarding extra features, cost, and size.
GPS tracker FAQ
The up-front cost of GPS trackers ranges from about $19 for the Tracki to $200 or more for something like a kids smartwatch, where GPS tracking is just one of many features included in the device.
Most GPS trackers require a monthly subscription. A subscription rate between $20 to $30 a month is typical for any kind of GPS device. The most expensive subscription we’ve seen is around $70 a month for the Kanega Watch—a medical alert watch with GPS.
No. GPS trackers need a SIM card to share location data via a cellular network. That’s what the subscription pays for—cellular network access, just like a phone.
If you find a GPS tracker without a monthly fee, it might be a Bluetooth tracker in disguise. Scroll back up to our review of Apple AirTags to understand the pros and cons of Bluetooth trackers.
To read more GPS FAQs, check out our guide to how GPS trackers work.
For our review of the best GPS trackers, we considered well over 30 GPS trackers across multiple categories (i.e., vehicles, kids, pets, general use). We compared technical specifications, cost, and safety features to narrow down the best choices, then leaned in on our hands-on testing experience to pick the best-of-the-best. We also read user reviews to look for positive or negative trends. To learn more about how we review products, read the Safewise methodology page.
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