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1 October 2020

Top five sat navs for 2020

We round up the year’s best sat navs, from free sat nav apps to the most advanced big-screen standalone models.
Best Sat Navs 2015
DN
Daljinder Nagra

With a Best Buy sat nav you’ll get from A to B, trouble free, every time. So there’s no need to argue with a loved one over directions or if you find yourself heading the wrong way down a one-way street.

We test and review the latest sat navs, including new models from Garmin and TomTom, plus the latest and most innovative sat nav apps.

Each one is tested rigorously to ensure it’s easy to use, comes up with sensible routes and gives you clear directions you can follow when you’re out on the road. 

Whether you’re looking for a dedicated sat nav with all the latest features or a sat nav app that works brilliantly even when you can’t get a 3G or 4G signal, you’ll find what you’re looking for below. We also reveal three sat nav apps you should avoid.

Only logged-in Which? members can view our recommendations in the table below. If you’re not yet a member, join Which? to get instant access to our sat nav results plus all of our online reviews.

Best sat navs

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79%
Best Buy
£349.99
Reviewed

This high-end sat nav is pricey, but it's chocked full of features. Does the navigation also impress?

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79%
Best Buy
£186.04
Reviewed

Can this mid-range sat nav from TomTom keep up with the high-end option?

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79%
Best Buy
£188.56
Reviewed

This premium sat nav aced our tests thanks to its premium feel, ease of use and range of features. It gets live traffic data via a built-in sim card and features European mapping.

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78%
Best Buy
£148.56
Reviewed

This mid-range sat nav is one of the newest available. It offers a wealth of features, including lifetime map updates and the ability to handle phone calls. It's a deserved Which? Best Buy.

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78%
Best Buy
£155.00
Reviewed

This five-inch model is one of the highest scoring we've tested. This is down to its high quality construction, excellent route guidance and additional features such as speed camera information and traffic monitoring.

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You can take a look at all of our sat nav reviews.

And here are three sat nav apps to avoid

The worst sat navs and sat nav apps from our testing have messy maps, vague vocal guidance and confusing visual cues. They are often tricky to use, too, with illogical layouts and unclear menus. 

Frankly, we think they should just get lost. Here, we take a look at the very worst sat nav apps from our testing, which are all bad enough to be Don’t Buys.

Don’t Buy sat nav apps

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56%
£0.00
Reviewed

This free to download app for Android devices gets the basic guidance right and even offers voice recognition. However, it's too frustrating to use, with clunky menus and a lack of even the most basic features. There are much better sat nav apps available.

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38%
Don't buy
£0.00
Reviewed

It may be free, and can calculate routes reasonably quickly, but this app for Apple devices has little going for it other than that. The map and audio instructions can sometimes be difficult to follow, and you'll have to pay extra for speed camera and live traffic information.

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32%
Don't buy
£0.00
Reviewed

It may be free to download, but this sat nav app will drive you round the bend before getting you to your destination.

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Should I buy a sat nav or sat nav app?

We put every sat nav and sat nav app through the same series of tough tests using a GPS simulator. And we’ve found some great sat nav apps in our tests, including apps that are good enough to be Best Buys. 

A sat nav app is installed on your smartphone and they tend to be cheaper than dedicated devices, but may not offer quite the same smooth user experience. Handily, it’s easy to download an app, try and then delete if you don’t like it. Many will include or have the option to add useful features. 

We have tested sat nav apps that offer good quality navigation to rival a dedicated device, but we’ve also found others that have such poor guidance we simply wouldn’t recommend them. If you’re unsure whether you need a standalone sat nav or a sat nav app, try our interactive tool and find out how to buy the best sat nav for you.

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