And the answer is… it depends. Back in the days when sat navs were in their infancy we’d have said TomTom had the edge on their mapping and features, but these days it’s even harder to differentiate between the two. Whilst Garmin tend to be the favourite in the states, TomTom seem to be the more popular choice in Europe, but the truth is that there’s really very little between them. Our advice would be to concentrate on the different model ranges, and then make a decision based on spec & price rather than manufacturer.
At a push, we’d lean slightly towards TomTom Traffic rather than Garmin Traffic, although both generally report exactly the same these days. For design, we prefer look of the entry level TomToms, (e.g. TomTom Basic), over the entry level Garmins, (e.g. Garmin Drive 51). Once you get into the high-end models though, the Garmin Driveluxe and the Garmin DriveSmart 61 LMT-D are hard to beat on the looks front. If you’re after worldwide maps and not just Europe, then a TomTom is your only choice (without spending more for an extra map download on your Garmin). The top-spec Garmins can also be used in portrait mode, something none of the TomToms can do at present.