How Does Garmin And Others Actually Get Their POI information?


So, as posted above, I am wondering how Garmin, and others, currently get their POI data? Is it from HERE or someone else? The reason I ask is sort of a selfish motivation. One of my hobbies is riding ATVs. I generally ride on Minnesota or Wisconsin State DNR trails. When I want to buy gasoline near a trail, it is pretty important to have current, correct, accurate information. Yesterday, for example, I found a gas station on the drive home. It has been there a number of years. It simply does not show up on my Garmin and, yes, I am up to date on maps.

As an alternative, what are some of my better choices? For example, I bring my smartphone with and I am on Verizon, but the trails I am on are so rural that I did not have any coverage for a good portion of the trip.

Are Google maps more likely to show some gas stations that aren't on the Garmin database? I have sort of always wondered about this. Does Garmin's provider check with major gas station companies for locations?

Each site different

Google Maps has a way to enter your business, just like all the rest.

One only needs to go here for instructions.

Lot's of entries seem to show up on other maps with the exact same co-ordinate errors. Makes you wonder if it's entered incorrectly by a user or copied with the errors!

Metricman Nuvi 3597 GTM-60 Traffic Receiver Williamsburg, VA

there are several sources

There are several sources, one of the most common is the business license data from each state. This results in a lot of wrong/incorrect locations because the address on the license may be the mail address and not the actual address.

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How Does Garmin And Others Actually Get Their POI information?

Here is a real world example. I enjoy riding on the Gandy Dancer Trail. I typically start in Danbury WI, ride north into Minnesota, and eventually enter back into Wisconsin. There is a place called Drifter's Trail, 1565 County Road BB, Foxboro, WI 54836, very close to the trail. When I check my Garmin Nuvi, all of the gas stations are several miles away. I did find a Spur station,
9987 S WI-35, Garrison Road, Foxboro, WI 54836 a mere 2.6 miles away due east. The problem is it does not appear ATV operation is permitted on that portion of County Road. If I can find a station a bit close to the Gandy Dancer Trail, even if it is further north, that would be fine.

I do see that when I specifically look for that Spur in Foxboro, it geocodes a different location. Does anybody have any other helpful advice? And I do realize that it may simply be a case of I am not close enough to a gas station to ride my ATV legally to get it.

Thanks in advance for everybody's help. I do appreciate it!

this isn't what you asked

These are two different things. Garmin doesn't put in every business, it puts in those it feels like according to some arcane algorithm that only selects those places where the coordinates are wrong.

What you are asking for is a custom POI for fuel locations that would be close to a specific route. EPE can do this from the files that are here.

Illiterate? Write for free help.


Boxcar, I always presumed the companies paid Garmin to include their business locations/ad's commercials in the maps.. But it was just what I guessed as in this business climate no-one does anything for free...

Never argue with a pig. It makes you look foolish and it anoys the hell out of the pig!


For the POI's I have created or updated I go to the companies location list. Then locate each location in MapSource and/or Google Earth.

From this information I create a GPX or CSV file to upload to POI factory.

The more locations the longer it takes. I'm working at another POI which is not on this site yet, many,many locations and time consuming.

Maybe there is a quicker or shorter way, but I do not know one.

Nuvi 2797LMT, DriveSmart 50 LMT-HD, Using Windows 10. DashCam A108C with GPS.

Google search shows .The

Google search shows .The major mapping companies from which GPS manufacturers pull information are NAVTEQ, Tele Atlas, Express Update by Info USA and Google Maps. See

Charlie. Nuvi 265 WT and Nuvi 2597 LMT. MapFactor - Offline Maps & GPS.


Glad you did that search - that is very interesting.

Gas Buddy

Have you tried ?

Lots of remote gas stations shown. Although there are lot of the more remote gas stations with a dash (-) for the price.

You'll probably have to have 3 IE windows open to compare locations. But, at least you could make your own POI file.

Metricman Nuvi 3597 GTM-60 Traffic Receiver Williamsburg, VA


I used to work at a building where NAVTEQ had an office. They also had a small fleet of Ford Escape hybrids in the parking lot that were equipped with a large roof storage box that had some very obvious cabling going into the vehicle. Inside there was a laptop mounted above the center console. The other equipment in the rear was not readily visible from outside. It would appear these vehicles were used in some capacity for mapping and POI data collection.

Building a custom poi maybe the best way

Jim - What are the major gas station chains in the area? As previously mentioned, reviewing their location data and creating a custom POI may be the way to go.

I've created a couple of files from the chains I frequent so that I can gas at that brand when ravelling. Sometimes it can be easy to grab a list from their website and create a custom POI for your gps. If you want to send a chain name that may have a station in that area and a general coordinate I'll have a peak.

Is this the general area

Is this the general area ?

46.221423, -92.314535

A quick blast at Shell shows several in that area using these coordinates but am not sure of the proximity to the trail, your main question

The Shell site even has a handy GPS file download .... file called US.csv and a shell icon to go with it - looks like it has all their outlets