How To Transfer Save Data In Animal Crossing: New Horizons

The winter update is bringing two new ways to transfer your island data.


Data transfers are coming to Animal Crossing: New Horizon's upcoming free winter update, slotted to drop by the end of the day on November 18. According to Nintendo, this update will include two new features to transfer save data between two Nintendo Switch systems: entire island transfer and resident move. Here's how to use both!

Entire Island Transfer

This feature is for when you're looking to move your whole island, residents and all, to a new Switch system. When you initiate an entire island transfer, all progress and customizations along with all player residents will be moved over, so be sure that everyone who plays on this island will have access to the new Switch. You don't want to lock anyone out of their game! This is also the only way to transfer your island resident representative if you haven't backed your game up. In case it's been a minute, the island resident representative is the main player character on your island.

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To complete an entire island transfer, you will need access to both the original system and the new one.

Resident Move

The resident move feature is one you should use if you have multiple people playing on one island, and you want to move any that aren't the resident representative. With resident move, the selected resident, along with their home, inventory, and stored items, will be transferred to the new island. You can't transfer your resident representative with this feature.

If you want to move a resident to a brand-new island, the system you're sending them to needs to have no pre-existing save data. If there's already an island on the new Switch, your resident will move there. All of the other island progress and animal neighbors will stay on the original system.

Just like with the entire island transfer, you will need access to both the original system and the new one to complete a resident move transfer.

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