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Importing Favorites

Sorry folks - I know I've seen this covered before, but I just can't find it. In need to import a list of favorites from a spreadsheet or CVS file into my Nuvi 660. I seem to recall there is either a free Garmin utility to assist, or someone devised a set of steps to follow. Any help you could provide would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!


  • Tim 1482 Points
    You are looking for the POI Loader application from Garmin. You can grab it here.
  • Larry 0 Points
    POI Loader seems to require that you obtain the Lon/Lat. What I want to do is simply drop in a CSV file of names/addresses that I can then select from and route to. For instance, I need to visit 53 stores in the region to perform some tech work. I've used Maptuit to optimize my route in 18 store chunks, but I'd like to up load all the addresses into my Nuvi so that I don't have to input each one by hand - I could just select from my list of "favorites" and be on my way.
  • Tim 1482 Points
    The tricky thing about that is that each address wouldn't have gone through the Nuvi's "find" process to match what you type in with something it has in its map database. Therefore your addresses will need to be geocoded (the process of taking addresses and converting them into coordinates) before the file is imported into POI Loader.

    I think there are some utilities available on the net that will try to geocode a CSV file of addresses, but I can't come up with where that is at the moment.
  • Larry 0 Points
    TeleNav/EZLocate is one, but it charges a fee for more than one at a time. Shame - they should really make it easy. I'm surprised that the Nuvi doesn't scan for the address from the file as if you had just typed it in from the keyboard. If I can't quickly dump a series of addys in, I might was well hand-enter them one at a time as needed.
  • Tim 1482 Points
    The Nuvi would then need to go through a process whereby it prompts you for clarification whenever it comes across an ambiguous entry. That is probably more than they wanted to program into the Nuvi.

    But I totally agree with you that there should be a more elegant solution.

    I've used this geocoder a few times, but it is really showing its sign of age and doesn't work all that well.... mostly because their data source is TIGER.

    You can also use Google Maps as a cheap geocoder. Type in the address you are lookin gfor, then click the 'link' button, and grab the lat/long from within the URL it offers.
  • Larry 0 Points
    Just heard from Garmin Support - no easy way to import an address list. They cite "" ( as a source of additional information on POI creation. (Tim, call 'em up and let 'em know this is the place to be!)
  • Tim 1482 Points
  • Tim 1482 Points
    I've started to thread asking people what there biggest needs are for tools related to creating and adding custom POI databases. If you have any input, please come over to this other thread and let me know your experiences. Thanks.
  • kknudsen 0 Points
    You need the free POI loader and a certain website.

    Start with a spreadsheet with the headers called NAME ADDRESS CITY STATE ZIP

    Don't name the zip column postal code or something stupid...stay with ZIP. 5 columns.

    Copy those columns and paste them into the window at the link above.

    Then click....START GEOCODING....

    give it a few minutes....there is a counter above the bottom window.

    When it's done.... just a few on CREATE A GPX FILE.

    That takes you to another window where you can save the file with a long numbered name....but as you save it, give it a name like CHICAGO BIG you know what's in it. Then save it INTO a folder on your desktop called GPS Points of Interest....or something like that so you can find it.

    Then use that free program...THE POI LOADER.....and with the Garmin plugged into your home or laptop computer start it and click through, doing a search for the GPX file you just made and let it do it's thing.

    Once done, your new CHICAGO BIG WHIG list of names and addresses will show up in the EXTRAS icon on the GPS. I hope that helps.
  • Boyd 1998 Points
    I hope that helps.
    That is a very nice write-up - thanks. But did you notice that you're answering a 5 year old question? :D
  • babj615 41 Points
    I hope that helps.

    That is a very nice write-up - thanks. But did you notice that you're answering a 5 year old question? :D
    I've done that before... :oops:

    Better late than never, I suppose. :wink:
  • kknudsen 0 Points
    Hey Boyd, I have no idea why you would discourage a detailed post such as mine. No one else in the last 10 years posted a system for doing what I detailed...just spotty and outdated information. That know it all attitude discourages folks who might be pretty helpful. You must be insecure and love to be critical even when it's not warranted.
  • Tim 1482 Points
    I didn't see any discouraging, and he wasn't critical of your post-- he complimented it.
  • Boyd 1998 Points
    Wow, I said it was a very nice write up and thanked you. I then commented that the thread was 5 years old (in case you didn't notice) and even added a smiley.

    Thanks for your contributions.
  • kknudsen 0 Points
    Did you notice you're answering a 5 year old question.

    Embarrased. Oh well, I've done that (stupid) thing before too.

    Backhanded compliment. Just tacky...not mean...but unnecessary. And for those who use a database such as excel I didn't see a good answer in the last 5 years. Just odd. Not good communication skills.

    How about ...hey thanks for the detailed answer...welcome to the gps board. That sounds nice doesn't it?
  • sviking 141 Points
    Yeah, it's an old thread, but more information is always good, right? :lol:

    As a bassackwards work-around, since you have to type them in anyway, you can input addresses into Google Maps and "send to GPS". Then you can save the addresses as favorites (they automatically go into favorites on my 3790), pull the current.gpx file off the unit and, if desired, open/edit in Excel with the lat/longs imported from the Google app...

    No poiloader, visualizer, etc or any apps need to be installed with this method.
  • alanb 555 Points
    I have used GPSVisualizer in the past to create POI files from addresses. It is a great tool as long as you understand and accept the limitations of geocoding addresses. I found that many of the results were significantly off, sometimes by a few hundred feet, sometimes by miles. To get an accurate POI file, it was necessary to check every entry individually using satellite views, street level views and other research to pinpoint and adjust the coordinates to the correct locations. That said, GPSVisualizer is very helpful in getting a draft version of a POI file to work with.
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