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June 10, 2006 12:03 AM

Broken: Thrifty car rental map

ThriftysBenjamin Emslie points out:

I just booked a car on Thrifty's website. I clicked on the map link and got this.

I really don't know how to leave, seeing as there are no roads. That being said, I'm not even sure how to get there!


Wow, I didn't realize Florida was so... underdeveloped... wonder why they bothered with a Thrifty if there are no roads...

P.S. First... hopefully. Lots of ellipses, too.

Posted by: FUZZY12 at June 10, 2006 12:14 AM

Also, I'd say it's Microsoft's problem, not Thrifty's.

Posted by: Fuzzy at June 10, 2006 12:15 AM

Well, it is driven by Microsoft MapPoint. Were you expecting software that actually worked from Bill Gates and Co.?

Posted by: StatsCan at June 10, 2006 12:15 AM

Conveniently located in the middle of nowhere...

Posted by: Froggy618157725 at June 10, 2006 12:24 AM

Yeah, I'd say that's bunk.

Posted by: WiglyWorm at June 10, 2006 12:51 AM

"Where we're going, we don't NEED any roads." --Back To The Future

Posted by: game kid at June 10, 2006 01:00 AM

I have seen this before. I used to travel to Kansas City and rent from Budget and their online map looked almost the same (no roads). Another time, I noticed that the map for the local TGI Friday's shows the restaurant in the wrong location. If someone followed their directions, they would actually end up in an unsafe neighborhood. We do get a good number of out-of-towners here for the big mall and amusement park, so I often wonder how many people wind up down there. I have learned not to trust these maps.

Posted by: eBob at June 10, 2006 09:35 AM

"I have learned not to trust these maps."

It's not a Bill Gates problem. Even Google Earth has some big bungles in it. Towns 1000 miles from their correct location...

Posted by: Dave Collins at June 10, 2006 01:12 PM

It's not a Bill Gates problem, but it is a Microsoft MapPoint problem (which, come to think of it, may be a Bill Gates problem). Expedia/MapPoint maps are notoriously light on detail and sketchy on accuracy. A map of my town, for instance, shows streets that don't exist, streets intersecting that don't, fails to identify one way streets as such, and doesn't show a number of streets that do exist.

Apparently the zoom level on the map Thrifty provided was too high to show what MapPoint considers too minor a road to display at that resolution.

So far I have yet to run into similar problems with Google Maps. The map of my town is accurate with one minor exception: A new street (as of last year) hasn't been added yet.

The one thing that ALL of these services seem to have issues with are practical directions. Some or worse than others, but trying to get driving directions on them will often end up with 'turn left, go .5 miles, turn right, go .5 miles,turn left, go .5 miles,turn right, go .5 miles,' stair-stepping you to your destination on minor roads (technically a shorter distance) instead of the real-world solution of going all the way down and all the way over on major highways (a more practical shorter travel time).

Posted by: Hoki at June 10, 2006 02:42 PM


Posted by: ElNacho at June 10, 2006 03:55 PM

At first I was surprised that someone could be so stupid. Then I saw that is was Microsoft's map

Posted by: EricJ2190 at June 10, 2006 06:43 PM

Yes, broken indeed!

Posted by: Gung Ho at June 10, 2006 08:31 PM

Not necessarily broken--

Thrifty has many locations on military bases. The map information for these sites is usually restricted (even on Mapquest and Google Maps).

Posted by: spooly at June 10, 2006 09:19 PM

I guess we're all going to have start taking our psychic pills again.

Posted by: lefty-chef at June 10, 2006 10:03 PM

USE GOOGLE MAPS!!!! they r WAY better than any other service!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: el NiCKie at June 11, 2006 01:08 AM

Also, the icon on the map seems to indicate that you've rented the Jetsons' space-car.

Posted by: mattymatt at June 11, 2006 05:59 AM

Seems pretty clear to me--

Go south into to Florida until you meet "Lee", then head north and take a right turn into the Thrifty parking lot.

Posted by: chimpanzee at June 11, 2006 12:13 PM

Yeah! They should, at the LEAST, say that the map parts are restricted. Otherwise, it's COMPLETELY broken!


Posted by: another guy named Alex B at June 11, 2006 12:16 PM

I see nobody has even considered it could be a full cache or other problem on the users side that is causing it to only show part of the page.....

I checked all the maps and they look ok, only thing broken is it shows 2 pages of maps for florida yet the second page is the same as the first

Also all the sites on military bases don't have map links and say they are for rental to Government only

Posted by: infinity306 at June 11, 2006 01:03 PM

Come on, not broken, everyone knows where LEE is. Thrifty is right around the corner. How hard is that?

Posted by: Baba O'Reily at June 11, 2006 05:33 PM

spooly>"Thrifty has many locations on military bases. The map information for these sites is usually restricted (even on Mapquest and Google Maps)."

I couldn't find any restricted ones. Heck, Google doesn't just have maps, they have full blown satellite photos, such as:

Patuxent River Naval Air Test Center -

Wright-Patterson Air Force Base -

Andrews Air Force Base -

White Sands Missile Range -

Norfolk Naval Base -

New London Naval Submarine Base -

Need any more examples? ;)

Posted by: Hoki at June 11, 2006 05:58 PM

but spooly's right, to some extent. Look at the pentagon using google maps and you'll see what I mean.

Posted by: realsaddam at June 11, 2006 06:04 PM

ha ha ha ha lol

Posted by: asdf at June 12, 2006 12:40 AM

"Seems pretty clear to me--

Go south into to Florida until you meet "Lee", then head north and take a right turn into the Thrifty parking lot."

I know that guy. Not to bright. Don't think he could give you directions.

Posted by: FL resident at June 12, 2006 12:07 PM

You rent a car with a GPS map system and as soon as you pull out of the parking lot it starts saying "You are not on any marked road".

BTW Broken. If they are not going to provide a useful map why bother to provide one at all.

Posted by: Sean P at June 13, 2006 09:34 AM

I once searched for directions to a JC Penney store on their website, which uses Microsoft's MapPoint.

It gave me an incomprehensible list of turns, each onto a street called "Unnamed Street" and turns every .00 mile.

And this was in San Jose, California, not some tiny town.

I think that Microsoft's map service is an example of "too little, too late" in their competition with Google.

Posted by: Gene at June 14, 2006 07:53 PM

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