I was asked by the folks at SPOT to evaluate an upgraded unit that they call SPOT 2. I am a fan of SPOT. Yes, it is not the perfect solution but it is a cost effective way to let people know where you are and, in an emergency, alert people to your exact location. Overall there have been some significant improvements with SPOT 2.
SPOT Personal Tracker www.findmespot.com is a GPS reporting device that has several features for peace of mind for you and your loved ones. Even though Transport Canada does not consider it as an alternative to an ELT, it is a relatively inexpensive way to provide additional protection for you and your passengers, and in many ways, makes up for many of the shortcomings of ELTs.
When you purchase a SPOT (there are several dealers listed on the SPOT site http://www.findmespot.ca/en/locateadealer) there is a requirement to purchase an annual subscription to various levels of service. The basic service (unlimited check-in, help and 911 messages) is $99.99 U.S. per year. There is an additional Track Progress service which provides a breadcrumb trail for your flights (see the SPOT website for an explanation). This is perhaps one of the most important features to have in addition to 911.
Normally, the Track Progress service is an additional $49.99 per year but for COPA members it is free when the promotion code is entered during the activation process. To get your free promotion code ($49 U.S. value) simply contact COPA after you purchase your SPOT (email Cathy firstname.lastname@example.org or 613-236-4901 extension 100). She will record your name and membership number and then issue you a unique code.
Click here for details on how to subscribe to the service and get the COPA discount. The document also contains suggestions on how to use SPOT in your aircraft to ensure that you get check-in and tracking messages.