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Old 19-08-2008, 10:22   #1
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Question Charts paper and software versions

Can anyone suggest where I can purchase, in the United States, reasonably priced Nautical Charts, paper and electronic versions.

My plan is to travel from Florida to Argentina, via the Caribbean Sea, between Central America and the Caribbean Islands.

Is a 'Passage Planning' software package, the electronic charts or is it more then this.

If possible somewhere I can purchase online.

Many thanks
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Old 19-08-2008, 11:36   #2
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If you don't want to spend a lot of time downloading charts, a good place to start is
Managing the Waterway | An Enriched Cruising Guide for Intracoastal Waterway Travelers
For paper charts there are a number of vendors on line that carry all the the various entities that publish charts for you intended travel. Several of these sources can print out up-to-the-minute corrected versions of the NOAA charts for a few bucks more than distributed printings which you should update in pen in ink using Notices to Mariners.

Since someone is going to sidetrack your query to cover this aspect, I might as well ask now. Is an up-to-date digital chart (and a reliable way of reading it) better or worse than a years-out-of-date paper chart? The chicken answer is to have both!
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Old 19-08-2008, 11:52   #3
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Thanks for this, no, no, I plan to have both...
Downloading Charts... this is possible, from where, the NOAA site?
thanks again
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Old 19-08-2008, 12:28   #4
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You can get all (nearly) the NOAA charts as downloads or you can buy them a s "charts on demand" for full sized accurate charts or get the chart books. Chart books will save you a lot of money. This only gets you to Puerto Rico. It's where the US ends and you need secondary sources. After that you can spend a lot on full sized charts or again the chart books will get you reduced size versions.

You would be advised to supplement the charts with some of the many guide books as information on the chart is not always complete enough. Accuracy in some places can be limiting too. All US NOAA charts are from the exact same base data be they electronic or printed on demand.
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