Taking your Garmin Handheld GPS Device Abroad

overseas -

Taking your Garmin Handheld GPS Device Abroad

If you are taking your Garmin handheld GPS device abroad/ overseas there are some settings that we recommend you change.

If you have a colour screen devices that has mapping, there are mapping options available for many different countries.

In this article we look at the ket points you need to think about if you are heading overseas with a Garmin GPS device.

Position format setting

In this first video below we look at changing the Position Format settings on your GPS device to suit the map grid system being use in the Country that you are visiting.


The PDF below has listed some examples of Grid system used in different countries, although we do always advise that you do some research yourself before visiting a country to see what grid system your guidebooks / maps that you are purchasing are using.

Some commonly used Grid Systems PDF Download

Mapping options

In the videos below we look at mapping options available for your compatible Garmin Handheld GPS device if you are travelling abroad, some of the Garmin Handheld Devices do come pre-loaded with Garmin’s own Topo Active European mapping covering all of Europe, this currently includes the following models: eTrex 22x, 32x, GPSMap66i, GPSMap67, GPSMap67i, Montana 700, *Montana 700i & *Montana 750i.
*The Montana 700i & 750i also come pre-loaded with Garmin’s City Navigator Europe Road Navigation maps.

We also look at a detail level setting that you can change in your device to improve the detail level on Vector digital maps such as the Garmin Topo Active or Open Source / Open Street Maps.


GPS Settings, Time Settings & Compass Calibration

When you arrive in the country you are travelling too and first turn on your GPS device with a clear view of the sky, it can take a little bit longer when you first power your unit on to fully lock onto Satellites.

To help improve satellite lock & accuracy, depending on the model of your GPS device you can select in your Satellite Settings to lock onto more than one set of satellites i.e. GPS & Galileo, and also turn on Waas & Egnoss  if your device has this setting, or in the case of some of the newer generation units such as the GPSMap67 series select Multi-GNSS & Multi Band both turned on.

To find Satellite settings on your GPS Device, please goto your main menu – select setup – select system – select satellite.

As shown in the video below we also recommend that you make sure your Time Setting is set to Automatic and that if your device has an Electronic Compass that you calibrate it.

Further reading

1. Overseas mapping for Garmin GPS units

2. GPS Training online resource (our online training platform)

3. Walk and talk - let me take you on a walk with an Outdoor GPS unit/ GPS watch


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