Support Centre

Importing a Map (iOS)

Last Updated: May 31, 2019 01:01PM EDT

Users are able to import an unlimited number of their own maps, however, only 3 maps will be able to use the tools contained within Avenza Maps (location, placemark creation, tracking, etc.).  Users without a subscription (Plus or Pro), will see two new map statuses introduced - Active and Inactive. 

Active maps refer to those maps that can be used with the Avenza Maps toolset.  In the event that you had more than 3 maps imported (non-Map Store maps), the most recent 3 maps are considered 'Active'. 

Inactive maps refer to those maps that cannot be used with the Avenza Maps toolset.  This status occurs if you have more than 3 imported maps (non-Map Store maps), and do not have an active subscription (Plus or Pro).  You will continue to be able to view these types of maps, as well as import them, however, you will not be able to locate yourself, create placemarks, or record tracks.  If you had any Map Features (placemarks, tracks, etc.) on an Inactive map, you will be able to export these features, however, new features cannot be added until the map becomes Active. If you wish to have Inactive maps become Active, you will need to either purchase a subscription (Plus or Pro) to unlock the ability to use the Avenza tools with all maps or remove the currently Active maps to allow some Inactive maps to shift into Active status.

To Import a Map
On the My Maps screen, tap the Add icon ('+') to import a map. You can import from any of the following sources:

  • Avenza Map Store
  • iTunes File Sharing
  • Dropbox (if Legacy option is enabled in Settings, as of 3.6)
  • Storage Locations
  • QR Code
  • Web
  • Custom URL Scheme

Get a map from the store
Opens the Avenza Map Store where you can get free maps as well as purchase maps. Learn more about the Avenza Map Store.

Request a map
This option will allow you to contact us and request a map not currently found in the Map Store.  Please provide as much detail as possible about the desired map, and if you have a web link available for the map wanted, please provide that as well.

QR Code
Avenza Maps features a built-in QR code reader that allows you to import maps by scanning QR codes displayed on signs, posters, maps or the web. For more information on how to use QR codes please see our blog article here.

  1. Tap the QR code icon in the upper right corner.
  2. Scan the QR code (if you see a black screen, be sure to check your app permissions as the camera may be disabled for Avenza Maps).

iTunes File Sharing

You can load maps through iTunes File Sharing. 

  • Connect your device to your computer and open iTunes.
  • Click Apps and scroll down to see the File Sharing section.
  • Select Avenza Maps in the Apps list.
  • In the Avenza Maps Documents box, click Add File and browse for a georeferenced map (acceptable formats include GeoTIFF, geospatial PDF, and GeoPDF®).
  • On your iOS device, tap From iTunes File Sharing.
  • Tap to select which maps you want to import, then tap Import.

From Dropbox (Legacy)
As of v3.6, users can import maps from any cloud storage app they have installed on their device. To import from Dropbox directly (instead of choosing 'Storage Locations') please enable the 'Enable Legacy Dropbox' in the Settings > General options.

Dropbox is a cloud storage solution for all your photos, docs, videos, and files. Maps stored on your Dropbox can be imported to Avenza Maps. 
Note: You must have a separate Dropbox account (free to create) if you wish to sync Avenza Maps with Dropbox.  

  1. Tap From Dropbox.
  2. Confirm that you want to connect to Dropbox.
  3. Enter your login credentials or tap Allow (if you're already logged into Dropbox).
  4. Tap to select which maps you want to import, then tap Import.

Tap Unlink any time to disconnect from your Dropbox.

From Storage Locations
As of v3.6, users can import maps from any cloud storage app they have installed on their device.

  1. Tap From Storage Locations.
  2. Navigate to the app you'd like to import from (Google Drive, iCloud Drive, etc).
  3. Login if required.
  4. Tap the map you'd like to import.

Enter a URL of a compatible georeferenced map. The map will automatically download to your device.

Custom URL Scheme
Enter a custom URL schema pdfmaps:// or avenzamaps://, to open the file in the app.
For example add the prefix to a map in the following format: 

pdfmap:// OR avenzamaps:// 

After adding a prefix simply share the URL via email or message and click the link. The link will automatically open in Avenza Maps and the import of the map will begin.
Note: Some devices, carriers, and email clients do not support this format or have size limitations.

Supported Map Formats
Avenza Maps supports the following formats for custom imported maps:

  • Geospatial PDF (.pdf) - A PDF embedded with geographic information
  • TerraGo GeoPDF (.pdf) - A PDF embedded with geographic information.  GeoPDF is a proprietary format of TerraGO
  • GeoTIFF (.tiff, .tif) - A GeoTIFF is a TIFF file embedded with geographic information
  • JPG (.jpg) - A JPG is an image file that must be packaged with either a TFW & PRJ or JGW & WKT in a ZIP file 
  • Avenza Maps File (.avenzamaps, .pdfmaps) - A format used to import multiple custom maps at once (such as for a folder or map collection).  For more information, please see .Avenzamaps Files
  • Custom Scheme (avenzamaps://, pdfmaps://) - Creates a clickable link that can be shared via email, messaging, etc. and will automatically prompt Avenza Maps to open when clicked
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