Should I purchase mapping for my Garmin device on preprogrammed datacard, or as downloadable content?

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Mapping for Garmin devices are sold as pre-programmed datacards, or as a direct downloaded from the Garmin website.1 Please see below for the benefits of each format.

Preprogrammed datacards (Recommended): Preprogrammed datacards are immediately ready for use out of the box. Simply unpack the card and insert it into your compatible Garmin device. These maps do not need to be unlocked to a specific device which allows you to move the card to multiple devices if desired. Maps in this format cannot be copied to additional cards. If you wish to obtain updated content, a new card will need to be purchased. Typical processing time is 2-3 days on datacard orders.

Downloadable Content (DLC) : Maps purchased in this format can be downloaded directly from the Garmin website. This is the quickest method of getting mapping for your next trip. Downloaded maps can be sent to either your Garmin Device (pending memory availability) or directly to a blank microSD/SD card. DLC will require a device, a user supplied microSD/SD card and a high speed internet connection.

Note: Before selecting your purchase option, be sure to review the requirements tab and products tab on the specific mapping product pages to ensure your device and/or computer will work with the selected format.

1Not all formats are available with all map offerings. The available formats for the specific mapping product will be listed on the product page.

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