Which Is Better: A Garmin or TomTom Sat Nav Unit?

With so many navigational devices out there today, it’s hard to choose which one will work for you best. But when you put two of the best devices in a head-to-head match-up, we should ask our readers which is the better choice.

In this tale of the tape, we’ll be taking a look at a Garmin navigational device versus the TomTom Sat Nav Unit. While each of them serves the same purpose, there are some things that stand out for each device. Which features will be enough for you to choose one or the other?

If you are in the market for a navigational device for your vehicle, keep reading. We’ll be discussing both of the devices mentioned above and talk about what they’re able to do and how they differ from each other. Let’s get right to it:


Best Garmin Sat Nav

First off, we’ll begin with Garmin. What makes their devices stand out the most is that they have displays that are clear, easy to read, and easy to navigate. Plus, the font readability is great compared to the TomTom.

Garmin has a wide variety of devices (as does TomTom). But what are among the popular choices for the brand? Let’s take a look at a few examples:

  • Garmin Drivesmart 61 LMT-S: This is one of Garmin’s top sat nav devices. It might even be the best of the bunch. This has a battery life of one hour, which is decent for a device like this. It offers Bluetooth and WiFi compatibility which is excellent for when you want real-time updates on where you’re going and whether or not you’ll run into some construction along the way.  This has internal solid-state memory and can handle up to 64 GB of micro SD card support. With its sleek design, it looks good on any vehicle dashboard. However, what it lacks is SIM compatibility.

  • Garmin Driveluxe 51 LMT-D: This has some of the same features as the Drivesmart. However, it has an excellent multi-touch display and compatibility with FourSquare and Tripadvisor. Perfect for when you want to grab a bite to eat somewhere or find a nice hotel to stay at for the night. This might be the go-to option for someone who is looking to travel the highways and byways for long periods of time (think cross-country road trip).

  • Garmin Zumo 396: This is compatible with motorcycles. And it’s the best sat nav for bikes that Garmin can offer up. It has IP7 waterproof certification, the best in the business. And it’s pretty durable when it stands up to nature’s elements and even fuel vapors. You get the same road alerts and other real-time updates thanks to Bluetooth and WiFi technology that’s built right in.

TomTom Sat Nav

Best TomTom

TomTom has been one of the premier names for sat nav devices for years. They still reign supreme for most motorists even today. But TomTom offers up a few things that Garmin falls short of. For example, TomTom provides you with interruption-free operation (unlike Garmin, which displays ads from time to time).

Let’s take a look now at the devices that TomTom offers:

  • TomTom Go Premium: If you are looking for probably the smartest Sat Nav device on the market, the TomTom Go Premium is definitely the go-to option. This has a large database of maps, making it the perfect Sat Nav device to take just about anywhere even around the world. Even better is that it works with both Google and Siri assistants (no Alexa support, obviously). This will give you plenty of features like speed camera, real-time traffic, and so much more. It’s the perfect road buddy no matter where you go. You’ll be able to make it to your destination on time, sync appointments or scheduled events, and everything will adjust accordingly depending on whether you take an alternate route or not.

  • TomTom Go 6200: This has some of the same features mentioned in the Go Premium. But you get plenty of lifetime updates as well. Whenever the software needs an update, you’ll get it absolutely free for life. That’s not a bad deal to have. Like the Go Premium, it can support 32GB in miniSD storage. It has both Bluetooth and WiFi compatibility. And it has an easy to use interface so you can navigate through the touch screen with ease and find what you need.

  • TomTom Rider 550: Of course, we can’t wrap up the list without finding a TomTom for bikers. This bad boy is weatherproof and waterproof. Plus, you get plenty of free updates for life. As always, you get real-time traffic information and world-class route guidance. Whether you’re on a Harley or a motorbike with a side cart, you’ll be able to easily navigate to your destination without having to deal with road construction, bad accidents, and everything in between. 

So Which Is Better?

After looking through three of the best devices each brand offers, it might be hard to choose which one will serve you best. In the end, we think that Garmin Sat Nav's are better than TomTom. The TomTom devices are quite powerful and they offer free lifetime updates for their users.  The problem is the Garmin units are just better in everyway.

On top of that, they have awesome smart features that will help make your road trips a lot less stressful. With ad-free use, Garmin will provide you with little to no distractions. Plus, it would be smart to keep your eyes on the road, to begin with.

While it lacks the amount of SD space compared to the TomTom, it does have a ton of rich features. As far as affordability is concerned, it depends on the device and the features they both have. Both Garmin and TomTom have Sat Nav units that are listed at the same price or close to it.

If you want quick real-time navigation, SIM data, and compatibility with Siri or your Google Assistant, TomTom has the device for that (GoPremium).  

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