How to Estimate Travel Time For Boat Trips with Mariner GPS Dashboard

Mariner GPS Dashboard is composed of the many ideas we’ve come up with while out on our adventures afloat. In our early days of renting small boats without onboard computers, we thought of how convenient it would be to be able forecast how long it would take to get to different islands in the vicinity, and to know exactly how far out we could go before sundown.


  1. Simple steps, quick results (getting started)
  2. Comparison with Wayfarer GPX
  3. Afterword + download link
Approach to De Biezen Island in a Polyvalk πŸ“ Harderwijk, Netherlands
Approach to De Biezen Island in a Polyvalk πŸ“ Harderwijk, Netherlands

The travel time calculator was imagined during these trips, and is designed to be usable by anyone without any prior knowledge of charts and navigation. This guide explains how to use this feature to make quick estimations based on your real-time and average speeds.

Measuring distance and estimating travel time for a boat trip, Mariner GPS Dashboard 3.5 for Android
Travel Time Estimation in action
πŸ“ Harderwijk, Netherlands

Simple steps, quick results

Travel time estimation icon in Mariner GPS Dashboard for Android

Tap on the route icon in the bottom right corner of the map (pictured right) to activate the drawing mode. An information bar will appear prompting you to start drawing points on the map. Tap on the map to add points and create a route from your current position, and tap on an existing point to remove it from the route.

When you’re done, tap on the ‘ESTIMATE’ button on the info bar to show the travel time calculator panel, which lets you estimate how long it will take you to travel the route and what time you can expect to arrive. Swipe up and down on the speed wheel (blue numbers column) in the middle of the calculator to make estimations at different speed; your current speed will be shown by default. Tap on ‘SET’ to type in a speed using the keypad.

Travel time calculator panel, Mariner GPS Dashboard for Android
Calculator panel, Mariner 3.5

Tap on ‘GO’ on the bottom right corner of the calculator to finalise the route and return to the map. The information bar will now show your elapsed distance, total distance and expected arrival time at your current speed. Tap on ‘ESTIMATE’ again to make another estimation, clear your route, or recenter your active route on the map.

Travel time estimation bar, Mariner GPS Dashboard for Android
Live estimation bar, Mariner 3.5
LT stands for Local Time

⚠️ Mariner’s Travel Time Calculator provides estimations only, and is not to be used as a navigation system. Maps do not currently include marine chart information for guidance on safe routes.

Travel time estimation down the Main River in Frankfurt, Mariner GPS Dashboard 3.5 for Android
Measuring a route down the river with Mariner 3.0.+
πŸ“ Main River, Frankfurt Am Main

Comparison with Wayfarer GPX

Mariner’s Travel Time calculator may appear very similar to Wayfarer GPX at a first glance, however there are key differences. The feature was first introduced in Mariner 2.0 (2019). As the two apps have been built in parallel they have ended up sharing very similar design patterns.

Wayfarer GPX expands on the original Travel Time Calculator, making it more practical to use as a general planning tool for all modes of transport – land and air as well as marine. The app also has the capability to import GPX files for estimations on preexisting routes, and to export new tracks to GPX for reading in other devices and apps on any platform.

Wayfarer GPX for Android, measuring a route for boats across The Solent, UK
Travel Time Calculation on an Imported GPX file, Wayfarer GPX 2.1

πŸ”— Learn more about Wayfarer GPX

Here are the key differences between the two apps:

FeatureRAMS Mariner 3+Wayfarer GPX 2+
Record with GPSβœ…βŒ
Live average speedβœ…βŒ
Live ETAβœ…βŒ
Draw routes on mapβœ…βœ…
Travel time calculatorβœ…βœ…
Export GPX fileβœ… Recorded journeys onlyβœ…
Import GPX filesβŒβœ…
Typed location entryβŒβœ…
Estimate along roadsβŒβœ…
Versions current as of July 2021

Mariner GPS Dashboard is part of the RAMS (Road Air Marine Speedometers) range of mobile and wearable GPS Dashboards tailored specifically to different modes of transport; Velocity for land vehicles and Mariner for marine vessels.

Our mission is to make new kinds of adventures possible with our range of mobile and wearable apps. Your feedback and suggestions are always welcome to make future updates even better.

We wish you safe and pleasant journeys.

Download Mariner GPS Dashboard on Google Play

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