GPS - works without wi-fi?

Fairly new to Android. Trying Galaxy Tab A (says it has GPS on it). In coffee shop, on free Wi-Fi, turned on directions to home. Then forgot it and left for shopping. A half mile from coffee shop, going in opposite direction from home, heard voice telling me to make a left turn.

I doubt that I still had the coffee shop Wi-Fi connection, why was the GPS still working?
Eventually it stopped working. Does the GPS work even without a Wi-Fi or cellular connection? Is there something on the device that detects and uses any other open Wi-Fi, even if I did not manually make a connection?

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