How to get free map updates for Garmin Nuvi units ?
If you own a Garmin satnav ,you will need at a certain point a new set of maps or a map update .
If your device is old, probably the best solution is to put your hands on a new Garmin satnav with the LMT extension in description .
LMT stands for LifeMaps and Traffic – so if you buy a such a device you will have free maps for life (life of the satnav ,not yours ). Get the gps , register it on Garmin website, make an account ,and get the latest updates for free . I also explained how to update Nuvi gps systems with Lifetime Maps in this tutorial . Every year there are available up to four updates for every map.
A second solution for Garmin satnav owners (if you have a recent model or you don’t want to spend money on a LMT gps) is to get free maps from free sources. The best choice is OSM maps –translated as Open Source Map.
At OSM maps are free, created and updated by users and volunteers across the words. Of course they are not perfect , but they are for free, and you can get updates that are not found on official maps.
You can get free Garmin maps for Europe , Africa, Asia ,North America ,South America and Oceania.
Follow the steps :
Go to the OSM website and choose the map type (in most cases choose generic routable ),then select your country or continent . Check the Enable manual selection box, then drag with the mouse (holding left button pressed) a square over the country/continent .
After that press Download map now, and you will get a free Garmin map ( IMG file) that you can place on your Garmin device or memory card.
A similar website were you can get free Garmin maps is Cloudmade .Following the same steps (choosing continent, region, country) you will get free maps that can be used as soon as you copy them to your satnav.
You can choose one of the methods presented above depending on your budget, and how old your satnav is.
If your satnav has a lot of years behind, probably the best choice to get free maps and support is to buy a new device.
If your satnav is a recent model, and you don’t want to spend money on official map update, the best choice is to try Garmin free maps from open sources .