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Garmin Nuvi 200


Confused about all of the options when it comes to GPS? Just want a GPS that gets you from point A to B with no fuss? The Garmin Nuvi 200 might be your next best friend. No MP3 player, no live traffic reporting, no multi-segment routing, no text-to-speech (but it does have voice prompts), no widescreen. But that is part of the appeal of this ultra simple to operate GPS.

The Nuvi 200 does one thing, and does it very well– gets you to your destination with little fuss or distraction. But don’t let the simplicity fool you. This basic Nuvi includes several million Points of Interest, has a longer battery life than competitive models, and Garmin’s interface is known for ease of use. It doesn’t have maps of Alaska nor Canada so if your travels will take you north consider the otherwise identical Garmin Nuvi 250 instead. And if you’re looking for a few more features, check out the TomTom 130. But if your looking for a quality GPS without the fluff, find your way to the Nuvi 200.

836 Responses

  1. Jack
    I was having the same problem and found that I wasn’t plugging the power cord all the way into the unit.

    Les - October 7th, 2008
  2. I have a nuvi 200W and it takes 10 to 15min to acquire satellite??
    I had reset it and I tried everything. What can I do??
    I has a stp c330 that had no trouble finding satellite..It got stolen

    Carmen - October 11th, 2008
  3. Carmen, see comment #355.

    Tim - October 11th, 2008
  4. I am trying to figure out how to update my Nuvi 200 bought in 2007. I have been serching and cant find out how to do it, plus is it free the first time i do it? God Bless, THANKS for the time

    Ben - October 15th, 2008
  5. You can check for application updates by using the WebUpdater program available at garmin.com/webupdater – You can check for map updates by registering your device at my.garmin.com

    Tim - October 15th, 2008
  6. hi… i live in the USA and i have a Nuvi 200 from 2007. i registered it last night to allow for map updates. it says my first download is free. i spent 2 hours waiting for the download… then when using the software to load the Nuvi 200… an error message appeared saying that i needed 34 more megabytes of space. i have not stored any additional data to my Nuvi 200 except a small group of stored “favorite” addresses… so how can i need THAT much more space for a map update? …especially for a product that the registration process knew about?

    am i not doing something right? do i need to delete everything from the Nuvi 200 first? if so, how do i do that?

    any help would be appreciated.


    jeff - October 28th, 2008
  7. When I ran the webupdater I got prompted to update the GPS Chipset Type B. Now when I try to install the GPS Chipset Type B update. It says it installed successfully but my GPS SW version is still 2.50b and it is still in the list of available updates when I run GarminUpdater again.

    Frank - October 29th, 2008
  8. I discovered something neat about the 200W; when you press the car icon for a couple of seconds, it displays not only latitude/longitude…it also displays the altitude. Very handy in our mountainous regions in central Pennsylvania.

    Chuck - October 29th, 2008
  9. Hi’
    Interested in a unit to take with me to Ireeland in April of 09. Have been there before and rented one . But It looks like I can purchase one for cheaper then i rented it before. Any way looking at nuvi 270 any suggestions? I use my nav system in my 06 acura all yhe time think its great
    Will use this for when i travel (europe important) also spare for my family north east US.
    The price for this 270 seems to good to be true. Unit with US and EUROPE preloaded fo the same as others europe update! Whats your view?

    Jerry - October 30th, 2008
  10. If it is from a reputable dealer then go for it.

    Tim - October 30th, 2008
  11. any others I should consider that come with europe installed?

    Jerry - October 31st, 2008
  12. There are a few others, but they are generally top of the line models (like the Nuvi 770, TomTom 920) that are a bit bigger and more expensive.

    Tim - October 31st, 2008
  13. so if all i need is a basais nav unit to get me from point a to point b the 270 is my best bet?

    Thanks for your help Tim


    Jerry - October 31st, 2008
  14. Yes, I’d say the 270 is probably your best bet.

    Tim - October 31st, 2008
  15. Is there any way of turning off the Map Update Notice screen that apprears while booting on the Nuvi 200, other than purchasing the update. I do not use it enough to justify buying the update at this time.

    Dan - November 1st, 2008
  16. Not that I know of, Dan.

    Tim - November 2nd, 2008
  17. Just a note on the latest updates for the nuvi 200. I got mine recently, and after applying the lates map, chip updates, etc., here is what I’m seeing
    ( tools>settings>system>about )
    nuvi 200
    Software Version 5.00
    Audio version: 1.00
    GPS SW Version: 2.80m
    I should note that the map version is NT 2009

    John S - November 7th, 2008
  18. I would like to know what the differences are between the 200W and 260W besides the text to voice and map coverage? Thanks!

    Katherine - November 7th, 2008
  19. 200W has a wider screen than the 200.

    Chuck - November 7th, 2008
  20. Katherine, the two differences you mentioned are the only differences.

    Tim - November 7th, 2008
  21. I am not familiar with GPSs, but plan to purchase a handheld to plot my own routes on a lake. What would be some good GPSs for this purpose?

    Bill - November 9th, 2008
  22. I just wanted to say that I couldn’t agree more about needing an arrow to show your next turn, especially when needing to pick a lane. Pressing the navigation bar on top is dangerous while driving but the only option. My partner has an Amcor, and while I do not recommend it due to it’s poor routing (constantly takes her down dead ends or directs her off non-existent exits), at least it has the arrow on the bottom left. Honestly it’s making me consider trying a TomTom because it is bugging me so much.

    Michelle - November 11th, 2008
  23. What is the difference between the 350 and 260.

    Anita - November 14th, 2008
  24. The 260 or the 200 being discussed on this page?

    Tim - November 15th, 2008
  25. I don’t know who to report this to but if your could forward it would be great!!
    I loved the GPS system in America and so purchased one with the Mexican Map already on it. The map was for 2008.
    I was traveling from Morelia to Ajijic. I used the cuota roads and knew them because of great condition. The GPS system could not indentify the most major roads in Mexico. It had me driving through lakes and fields but no roads and kept recaluating to put me on the most secondary roads. When I knew I needed to get off the major road to get to Ajijic in Jalisco I put in the address on the GPS. It immediately recognized the road. I was excited. It put me on a paved road (good) that shortly thereafter became a rock road that shortly thereafter became a very poor condition dirt road on a tiny steep winding mountain. It wanted me to turn left twice where NO ROAD existed but a sheer cliff to “death”. Thank God it wasn’t night I might have turned. This is extremely disappointing.

    M.C. Anderson - November 17th, 2008
  26. I think the GUI needs to be friendlier.
    It doesn’t recognize frequencies of visited cities e.g.
    most of the time, I Navigate to different addresses in the same city (or a tiny set of the same cities within a large metroplex) that I last navigated to, but the Nuvi 200 doesn’t know that… It doesn’t even assume (or give a choice in the GUI) the last state entered. As a result, I’m forced to always type in the state and city.
    Any workarounds?

    BTW, this could be easily fixed by Garmin in the GUI with additional prompts in Cities, States and Recent Selections.

    Frank - November 17th, 2008
  27. Nuvi 200 had chinese language?

    HC - November 19th, 2008
  28. Questions:
    1. Is there a way to delete a single “recently found” entry ?
    2. How can I enter an address without number ? For example, an intersection of a street and
    3. How do I name a location(after Nuvi accepted the address ?
    I am new to this site. If these have been covered, please let me know where the answers were. Thanks.

    albert - November 20th, 2008
  29. I stay in south africa and have a garmin nuvi 200, and will be in florida in America over christmas adn was wondering if you have download a map for florida or it will pick it up automatically

    lawrence - November 21st, 2008
  30. Albert – 1) No. 2) Menu->Where to->Intersections. 3) Instead of tapping “go” after finding a location, click “save”.

    Lawrence – you will need to purchase the map from Garmin either on SD card or the DVD.

    Tim - November 21st, 2008
  31. Hi..if i buy this unit online, eg; from USA and use this device in Malaysia, can this unit functional? i found its more cheaper rather than bought this unit over the shelf in malaysia. RM 1000 w/out dashbourd mount add RM250.

    Online with above accesories only RM 800 ++.

    Malaysian…this unit taxable?

    Kolok - November 23rd, 2008
  32. Tim: Thanks for the answers. However, I don’t seem to be able to find “Intersections” after “Where to”. It gives me the 4 categories, Address, Point of Interests, Recently Found, and Favorites. Both 200 and 270 do the same. Did I miss someting ?

    albert - November 23rd, 2008
  33. Albert: Tim told you the correct steps. From the menu screen choose “Where to?” You should get a screen that shows, “Address, Points of Interest, Recently Found & Favorites.” Press the “Arrow Down” button for more choices. Here is where you will find the “Intersections” button. Now just follow the prompts to pick “State, City.” Then add the first street intersection name or number and press done. Pick the correct one from the list. Now enter the second street intersection name or number and press done. Pick the correct one from the list. You can now show it on the map before saving it.

    Changing the name of a favorite can be done by going the the menu screen and pressing “Whewre to?” Now press “Favorities.” Press the item you want to change, and when it appears, press the “Edit” button. Now you can change the information you want to change.

    Dan - November 23rd, 2008
  34. I just discovered this great resource. I’m considering purchasing a Nuvi 200. Based on my research I believe it will provide the functionality I need for driving in Northern California. From the posts, it was mentioned that the maps were of a 2006 vintage. Are newer maps now being used? Also, if I drive 60 miles into Baja California, will any maps be provided in the U.S. software or will I need to purchase an additional map?

    Greg - November 24th, 2008
  35. Greg, in most cases it will be shipping with the most recent map. The most recent map is called “2009” and is based on data from the second half of 2007.

    Tim - November 24th, 2008
  36. I am considering my first GPS and was comparing the Garmin Nuvi 200 or the Tom Tom One 125 as well as the Megellan Roadmate 1200. any suggestions (all around the same price)?

    Ron - November 26th, 2008
  37. Tim,

    Thanks for the response about the vintage of the map software. I’m curious if you believe selling a product with a nearly 18 month old U.S. map is standard industry practice (all GPS vendors are doing it) or a competitive quirk of Garmin. Is this a way to get customers to buy new maps or do they offer a free upgrade if a new version comes out shortly after purchase?

    Greg - November 26th, 2008
  38. Greg, that is pretty standard practice. Other companies like TomTom have moved to offering maps on a quarterly basis, and I suspect within a year Garmin will do the same.

    Tim - November 26th, 2008
  39. I purchased a Nuvi 200 and like it so much I went back and got 2 more for family. We love it and were able to use it to go geocaching today for the first time. I downloaded 2 voices and a few holiday vehicles. The Elf is a riot and jokes around as you drive. It has a couple of quirks like telling us to make a left on a divided highway when there is nor thrufare there. Otherwise for the price it is great fun.

    Dee Lowe - November 30th, 2008
  40. hi Tim,
    I got a good deal on the garmin 200 (purchased on 29nov’08 in U.S.A) and did some research before getting it and spend some time reading the post here, they were VERY helpful.
    The question, I have not yet opened it because not yet sure if it has the NEW version of maps, chipsets,etc installed. If YES i would keep the device and if NOT I would return it for the TOM TOM 3rd edition.
    Can you tell me without opening the device and not paying the restocking fee of 15% to the retailer any way to find out the latest versions?

    juzer - November 30th, 2008
  41. Juzer, I wouldn’t worry about it much. There isn’t a way to tell that I know of without starting the device. If it doesn’t have the latest maps (which it should) then you are entitled to download the latest version from Garmin anyway.

    Tim - November 30th, 2008
  42. Thank you for the prompt reply Tim.
    You mean even if it is does not have the latest versions installed then I am entitled to downlaod it from Garmin at NO CHARGE ?

    juzer - November 30th, 2008
  43. juzer – yes, see Garmin nuMaps Guarantee.

    Tim - November 30th, 2008
  44. Does anyone know if it is possible to get maps of Canada in the Nuvi 200?

    Robin - December 1st, 2008
  45. I purchased a nuvi 200 2 days ago and have already discovered that the maps are over 3 and a half years old and Garmin is not offering any updates. I would not tell anyone that this is an acceptable GPS at any price.

    Wally - December 1st, 2008
  46. Robin, Yes, you can purchase Canada maps from Garmin on an SD card and pop the card into the GPS.

    Tim - December 1st, 2008
  47. I purchased a Nuvi 200 in the UK and now I’ve moved to Dubai. Does anyone know where I can download the middle east road maps? I don’t mind paying.

    Jay Johnson - December 2nd, 2008
  48. I have Nuvi 200 I bought on black friday frenzy formy girlfriend. Where is the route planner ? She downloads her csv from work daily and the Nuvi 200 cant find the dailytrip.csv on the SD micro card ?

    Matt - December 2nd, 2008
  49. Matt – That isn’t a feature the Nuvi has…

    Tim - December 2nd, 2008
  50. Does this unit (nuvi 200) arrive in the box with comprehensive roads and highways of Mexico? Or is their a secondary provider?

    Don - December 2nd, 2008
  51. If you purchase the Nuvi 200 in the USA it does not come with maps of Mexico.

    Tim - December 2nd, 2008
  52. initial charge on battery was 4 hours, only lasted 5 minutes when unplugged from car. also a question mark appears on map over the car and says searching for sattellite. never seems to acquire. just bought unit today, what am i doing wrong

    jack - December 2nd, 2008
  53. Jack, did you have an unobstructed sky view for at least 30 minutes?

    Tim - December 3rd, 2008
  54. tim i did not have an unobstructed sky view for 30 minutes as my battery only lasts 5 minutes after a 4 hour charge. is there a method to charging the battery

    jack - December 3rd, 2008
  55. Your Nuvi 200 should have included a car charger in the box.

    Tim - December 3rd, 2008
  56. tim i used the car charger for four hours , the unit will only operate for 5 minutes when it is unpluged from the car

    jack - December 3rd, 2008
  57. Provided your car was sending power to the charger during that time I would contact Garmin support. Or return it if the device is new.

    Tim - December 3rd, 2008
  58. thanks tim, you’ve been very helpful

    jack - December 3rd, 2008
  59. I bought a Nuvi 200 on black friday from Walmart and my friend also bought one the same day from a different Walmart in the same town. We both have done the updates on the Garmin webpage but my Garmin is running on the 4.6 version and his is running on the 5.0 version. His icons are a lil different and his menu is set up a little different as well. The biggest difference is on the left side he has the SD slot. But on mine, I have a micro-sd slot. What is the difference in our Nuvi 200’s. Does one of us have a later model? Any info would be greatly appreciated!!

    Mike H. - December 3rd, 2008
  60. Mike, it sounds like your friend has a 205, although Garmin has been known to change specs mid-production before and that might have happened in this case as well.

    Tim - December 3rd, 2008
  61. Thanks for the quick response Tim. That must be it. We checked the bottom of the Nuvi and it says Nuvi 200 so the change in specs sounds like the answer. Should I return mine to get one like his? I just don’t want to have an older technology if his is better or more up to date.

    Mike H. - December 3rd, 2008
  62. Mike, you could– although I’m not sure how you would guarantee you would get one of the “newer” models.

    Tim - December 3rd, 2008
  63. It would seem the unit with the micro SD slot would be the newer one, not older.

    Ron - December 4th, 2008
  64. Tim, We just purchased a Nuvi 200. How do I download a vehicle from the Garmin site onto the Nuvi 200? Can I do so using a SD card, or must I purchase a cable linking the Nuvi to our pc? Thank you.

    Eric - December 5th, 2008
  65. You need the USB cable.

    Tim - December 5th, 2008
  66. I purchased a Nuvi 200 from [deleted, see comment policy] on black friday. When I run webupdater it lists update ver 4.60 and a link to additional info. When I click the link it says Nuvi 2×5 (region file only) software version 4.60. Under device information it says:
    Device Name: GARMIN (H:\)
    Device: nuvi 200

    What I would like to know is if this is the correct update for my nuvi?

    Steve - December 6th, 2008
  67. I recently purchased the Garmin Nuvi 200 and am wondering if the female voice can be changed to a male voice.

    Debra - December 6th, 2008
  68. does the 200 tell you that you will be turning right 1 or 2 miles before the turn right/left 300 feet ahead?

    kathleen - December 7th, 2008
  69. I just used my Nuvi 200 for the first time yesterday. It did get me to a few places I needed to go. The reason I bought this item was because I had gotten directions online to a highschool in Northfield so I could go to my granddaughters band concert which the directions were wrong and I missed the concert due to being lost. So yesterday she had a dance recital at the same highschool so I programed my Nuvi to get me there. I was totally shocked when it wanted me to take the same wrong turn as the internet directions had given me. Thank god I knew where the school was now as I would have been lost again. I am sure I have the most updated map as I did just purchase it.

    Sheri - December 7th, 2008
  70. Sheri, there are only two major digital mapping companies for street in the USA which are used by the GPS companies and online mapping services. They all use one of two companies so it isn’t a surprise the online service you used and your GPS have the same map database with the same errors.

    Tim - December 7th, 2008
  71. whatI was asking about the 200 was – does it tell you ahead of time that you know to get in the right or left lane

    kathleen - December 7th, 2008
  72. does the 200 tell you 1 or 2 miles ahead of time that you will be making a right 300 feet ahead?

    kathleen - December 7th, 2008
  73. Ok, its me again. I went to register my Nuvi 200 today and it asks for me to hook up to the computer. Do I have to buy the special cord to hook it up. If this cord is needed for registration than why it is not included in the package? Frustrated!

    Sheri - December 7th, 2008
  74. Yes Sheri, you do need the USB cable to complete the online registration.

    Tim - December 7th, 2008
    • Sheri, you can use almost any compatible USB cable. I have used both a SONY brand cable that came with a digital camera and also a cable that came with my BlackBerry. You can probably get one online or at a local electronics store for just a few dollars. You don’t need the “Garmin” brand.

      Bill - July 8th, 2009
  75. kathleen, yes it tells you ahead of time whether you need to stay left or right. Or turn left or turn right.

    Mike H. - December 7th, 2008
  76. Tim, I’ve owned a Nuvi 200 for two months now, and I really love the unit. However, I really do hate the Owner’s Manual (lack of). My question is could you explain the difference and use of “Off Road” mode and “Pedestrian” mode? Thanks and this is a really great source of information!

    Jack Lancaster - December 8th, 2008
  77. Pedestrian – Creates routes on streets that follows pedestrian rules. (No interstate highways, allows “wrong” way on one-way streets)

    Offroad – Straight line between your current location and the destination.

    Tim - December 8th, 2008
  78. Just for clarification… since I hunt on a huge parcel of land, can this unit be used by hand in the offroad mode to track back to my vehicle after entering forest land on foot without any particular direction or roads?

    Jim A. - December 8th, 2008
  79. Jim,

    I don’t think the 200 will do this. You’d be better off with an Etrex or other handheld GPS unit.

    Steve - December 8th, 2008
  80. Jim,
    The Nuvi 200 will do point to point in off-road mode. If you want to track back to your vehicle simply save the coordinates of your truck as a favorite before you leave it, change to off-road mode, and then tell it to navigate you back to those coordinates.

    Ben B. - December 9th, 2008
  81. It takes awail for the “recalulating, recalulating, recalulating, recalulating,recalulating” Ya I get it, it was a wrong turn, sooooorrry, just figure it out then tell me thanks. lol

    Mitch - December 10th, 2008
  82. Can someone tell me how to change my home location? Thank you!

    Sheri - December 11th, 2008
  83. I have just received a Nuvi 200 as a present. It is a shame that Garmin does not supply a USB cable along with Nuvi 200 and you are expected to buy it separately. I tried the USB cable which came with my Canon Digital Rebel Xsi camera (sold as Canon 450D in Asia) and it is working fine. However, I kept getting error messages continuously, since there was no micro SD card inserted in the slot. I had to insert a micro SD card (even though I don’t need it), just to stop the error messages.

    The Nuvi 200 has a picture viewer with slide show capability. It asks if you would like to have a picture displayed at power on. Just to try out this feature, I selected one of the pictures to be shown at power on. Now I can not stop this picture from being displayed at power on. I have deleted the picture from the JPEG folder where I had uploaded it but even that has not stopped the picture being displayed at power on. Obviously, the software has saved a copy of the picture somewhere. Can anyone tell me how to stop this picture from showing up at power on. Thanks in advance.

    Pramod - December 11th, 2008
  84. Sheri, to change your home location, just delete it and then creat a new home location. Click on “Tools”, scroll down, click on “My Data”, click on “Delete Favourite(s)” and then delete your home location. At least, that is how I did it. I don’t know if there is a less round about way of changing the home location. I hope this helps.

    Pramod - December 11th, 2008
    • Pramod – Thanks for your information. I’ve been advised to remove my home addres for safety reasons, and this is exactly the information I was looking for.

      Jean - September 9th, 2009
  85. Pramod, Try this, go to picture viewer and select the picture your using for the power on picture. Press the info button. Then deselect the ‘display at power on’ radio button. Hope this helps.

    Steve - December 11th, 2008
  86. Hi Steve, as I said, I had already deleted the picture in the JPEG folder and so it was no longer being shown in the picture viewer. However, I have solved the problem by doing a hard reset. To do a hard reset, one has to switch off the Nuvi, lightly press the bottom right corner of the touch screen and then switch on th Nuvi while keeping the bottom right corner pressed.

    Pramod - December 12th, 2008
  87. do you think it is possible I could use my beanbag from my garmin 3600 for my nuvi 200

    kathleen - December 12th, 2008
  88. Does anyone know if it’s possible to access maps for South America? I live in Caracas, Venezuela and it’s nearly impossible to find addresses here. I don’t imagine there is anything complex, but if I could use it while traveling in the US and in addition to help navigate at home, that would be great. Thanks…

    Jenny - December 14th, 2008
  89. thinking about getting ths nuvi 200 for my wife but how would this work on a motorcycle also? i see they made a mount for this gps but no one has said how good it will work on a bike?

    taz - December 15th, 2008

    CAROL - December 15th, 2008
  91. Taz, I’d be extremely cautious about using the Nuvi 200 on a motorcycle. It wasn’t designed to be vibration resistant, is not waterproof, and has an exposed SD card slot where a little moisture or dirt inside could damage it.

    Tim - December 15th, 2008
  92. Carol,

    The 200 series will only announce upcoming turns (left, right, etc.) and will announce when you’ve reached your destination.

    Steve - December 15th, 2008
  93. steve, Thanks for the info. (hopefully worth getting) thx carol

    carol - December 15th, 2008
  94. steve, Thanks for the info. (hopefully worth getting) thx carol r

    carol - December 15th, 2008
  95. I want to purchase a GPS for my 19 years old daughter but dont know if I should get the GARMIN Nuvi 200 or the TOMTOM One 3rd edition. I want the easiest one to use for the MD, PA, DC AND VA area. In tyring to read up on both I get different reviews both positive and nrgative.

    Thanks forbyour help

    Andrea - December 15th, 2008
  96. There are some places in and around my city which are not included in the Garmin map in my Nuvi 200. So, obviously, the Nuvi can not guide me to these places unless I first go to these places and save their locations in “Favourites”. My question is, when I drive to one of these locations for the first time (starting from my home location), can I save the route traversed by me without having to save the locations of several way points? Thanks in advance.

    Pramod - December 16th, 2008
  97. what do you know about a Lowrance GPS XOG is that better than the garmim nuvi 200 this one said its weatherproof and they make a motorcycle mount fot this one

    taz - December 16th, 2008
  98. Pramod, no, the Nuvi 200 doesn’t have Multi Destination Routing.

    Tim - December 16th, 2008
  99. Taz – I use my Nuvi 200 with the Ram Mount on my Goldwing and have not had a problem with it. If I see that it might get wet I have covered it with a ziplock bag to keep the water off of it. If it is really wet, I just remove it and put it in my pocket.

    Dan - December 16th, 2008
  100. That last line should have read “havn’t” tried that as of yet. Opps

    Dan - December 16th, 2008

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