I previously owned an Edge 605, and recently replaced it with an Edge Touring. One key feature which I can't figure out on the Edge Touring is Car or Pedestrian routing. On the 605 you could choose "Car/Motorcycle," "Cycling," or "Pedestrian" routing. The Edge Touring however only seems to offer "Cycling," "Tour Cycling," or "Mountain Biking."

This is a serious issue for me because I use the device in mixed environments away from home, such as a trip where I do walking, cycling, and driving on a single trip. Whereas the best road cycling directions on the Edge 605 were actually given by the Car mode with Highways disabled, I can't figure out how to get decent driving directions on the Edge Touring. Is it even possible? If it's not possible on the Edge Touring, what about on the Edge 800, 810, or 1000? This information doesn't appear to be listed on Garmin's own site, nor can I discern it from the various product reviews online.

Similarly I miss the "Straight Line" style navigation from the Edge 605--sometimes there is no known route but you still want the distance-to-destination and direction pointing to work; I have also failed to figure out how to do this on the Edge Touring.

If it helps, I am using the City Navigator maps for Southeast Asia...the map data is all there, just the routing capabilities seem lacking on the Touring model. I also used some OpenStreetMap files in Asia which worked OK but again the device only offers bicycle routing whereas the old models offered car routing with the same maps.

  • I'm sorry, I'm looking at what you've written and am struggling to see a question in it. I'm voting to close on that basis (and will withdraw my vote if you can edit your question to make it clearer). If you're simply asking "Can I use my (or any) Garmin bike computer to get driving directions for my car?" can you not just say that?
    – PeteH
    Jun 15, 2014 at 9:53
  • @PeteH: Yeah, I sort of buried the question in the middle. Here it is for emphasis: I can't figure out how to get decent driving directions on the Edge Touring. Is it even possible? If it's not possible on the Edge Touring, what about on the Edge 800, 810, or 1000? The reason the question is more than just "Can I do this" is partly because I know (1) the Edge 605/705 could do it, and (2) it makes sense if the US cycling-specific maps included with the device don't support driving, but I'm using City Navigator extra maps which are proven to support driving. Jun 15, 2014 at 13:58
  • Okay, I've retracted my vote to close. But I still think you could make your question more clear - the site allows you to edit the original question, you don't necessarily have to add comments. For what its worth, I have an 800 myself, and use OSM maps, but have never tried to use it to obtain driving directions.
    – PeteH
    Jun 15, 2014 at 15:49
  • I'd guess no, but I don't have any evidence going one way or another. In any case, a cheap car gps (I use a Garmin Nuvi 2300 LM, which I got as a refurb for 50 dollars 3 years ago, with lifteime maps) is likely to provide you a lot of advantages anyway (such as a bigger screen, louder voice guiding, etc).
    – Batman
    Jun 15, 2014 at 16:27
  • My experience with many garmin devices is that they don't put the same firmware functionality from one device to another. Check out the reviews on DC Rainmakers blog for the Edge Touring and the Edge 800, 810 and 1000. (dcrainmaker.com/product-reviews/garmin) also search the garmin forums, I've found more 'fixes' in the forums then from emails to garmin. (forums.garmin.com/forumdisplay.php?20-Cycling) Jun 26, 2014 at 14:59

3 Answers 3


There is a website called http://www.dcrainmaker.com please check out page http://www.dcrainmaker.com/2013/08/garmin-touring-computer.html for the full guide however to answer your question and encase it disappears;

You can also specify if you want to start the route from where you are, or from another point on the map.

Once you’ve given it some instructions it’ll go off and come back with three routes (it’s like Monty Python – everything is in threes). It did take a bit of time (perhaps 2 minutes) to come up with the routes. Each route is roughly the distance you’ve specified, and all routes come back to where you started.

You can select any given route option to get a map overview: There are a number of settings around routing and navigation within the options (applicable to round trip routing and generic routing), including how the unit routes and whether it, for example, minimizes routes with hills. This point here is were you select routing mode. it's not everything you were after but should give you a good help towards it.

Full specifications for the device, versus other devices, are at the bottom of his page.

  • This doesn't answer my question, which is how to use the Edge Touring to do car-style routing. Your quote is largely about round-trip routing which obviously most people don't use in a car. :) Thanks anyway. Jul 2, 2014 at 13:59

I have received confirmation from Garmin support that the Garmin Edge Touring and Garmin Edge Touring Plus cannot do car-style routing, pedestrian/walking directions, nor straight-line navigation. They say the Edge 8xx and 1000 can do it, just as the old Edge 605/705 could.

This should be documented in the product literature, but it is not. Bicycle tourists beware: you probably should not buy the Edge Touring for actual touring. More like for casual cycling.

  • It's interesting because the Garmin Edge Touring page says that it does do turn-by-turn navigation. Do you have an older model? Is there a software update you are missing? I would call out Garmin for false advertising on that one if you have the same model I linked to.
    – Kibbee
    Aug 8, 2014 at 12:42
  • The manual says you can do turn-by-turn navigation using the "Where To" feature on the home screen. It also says you can adjust your transportation mode under Home - Tools (Wrench and screwdriver icon) - Routing Options and configure the Routing mode. See the "Customizing your device" section.
    – Kibbee
    Aug 8, 2014 at 13:16
  • @Kibbee: Yes, I know how to get "Cycling" directions, as explained in the question. My issue is that the Edge Touring cannot do car-style navigation, that is, suitable for driving. And in fact, the "Cycling" directions on Garmin devices are often worse for road biking than the driving ones were on the non-"Touring" models. It's not that I don't know how to use the device, it's that Garmin failed to advertise its (lack of) capabilities. Aug 8, 2014 at 14:37
  • Sorry for the confusion. I don't have the device so it's hard to know what would work. But the manual says you can adjust the "transportation method" so I assumed that this would allow you to select car, cycling, or walking. The manual doesn't go into detail on the options available for transportation modes.
    – Kibbee
    Aug 8, 2014 at 15:56
  • @Kibbee: yes that's the problem: the three modes are all variants of cycling on the Edge Touring. :( Aug 9, 2014 at 0:51

It would be possible to produce some custom maps based on OpenStreetMap data. And you can change the definitions of road types, which will affect the routing on the Garmin device.

eg if something is tagged as a motorway in OpenStreetMap, you could make it into a cyclepath on the Garmin maps. So they Edge Touring would route along it in cycling mode. You would have to experiment to figure out what type of roads the Edge Touring prefers for routing.

You could also create some Garmin maps without any routing data. Then the Edge won't be able to route along roads, so it should just give you a straight line to the destination.

Creating Garmin maps can be a bit complicated. The usual software is Mkgmap. Look at creating custom styles, which define how OpenStreetMap tags are converted to features on the Garmin map. A useful guide at cferro.net - Custom Garmin maps

For most modern Garmins, you can load multiple maps onto an SD card, and then select which one to use. So you could load maps for different routing modes, and choose which one to enable. I'm not sure whether the Edge Touring supports this. Otherwise, you can put the maps on separate MicroSD cards, and swap between them as required.

  • You gave me an idea: I could try disabling all the maps in the device then doing straight-line routing. Unfortunately that's a minority use case--the more important one for me is car-style routing. And yes, I could probably hack up some OSM data...somehow...but I actually use Garmin's own City Navigator maps for my region. In any case, thank you for elaborating on these ideas which maybe some enterprising person will find practical. The Edge Touring does support multiple maps on the micro-SD card--one of the few things it does better than the Edge 605 is support cards over 2 GB. :) Aug 8, 2014 at 11:50

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