TurboTax HelpTurboTax HelpIntuit

What's the difference between TurboTax Online and the TurboTax CD/Download?

SOLVEDby TurboTax3518Updated May 17, 2022

TurboTax Online and the TurboTax CD/Download products are very similar and both cover most tax situations. The majority of our customers choose TurboTax Online to confidently file their taxes. 

Here are the big differences between the two:

Storage Access Value
TurboTax OnlineWe store all of your information on our secure servers

You can work on your taxes from any computer or mobile device with Internet access


You're charged per return






TurboTax CD/DownloadYour return is stored locally on your computer or laptop

The software is installed on your computer




If you need to prepare multiple returns for friends and family, the CD/Download product is a better value, as it allows you to e-file up to 5 federal returns (at no additional cost)


Note: There are some tax situations that TurboTax Online does not cover. If you need to file corporate, partnership, and estate/trust returns or 2018, 2019, or 2020 amended returns, you'll need to go with a TurboTax CD/Download product.

Find the right TurboTax for your needs.

Was this helpful?

You must sign in to vote, reply, or post
TurboTax Desktop BasicTurboTax Desktop BusinessTurboTax Desktop DeluxeTurboTax Desktop Home and BusinessTurboTax Desktop PremierTurboTax Live BasicTurboTax Live DeluxeTurboTax Live Full Service BasicTurboTax Live Full Service Complex IncomeTurboTax Live Full Service Complex Self-EmployedTurboTax Live Full Service DeluxeTurboTax Live Full Service PremierTurboTax Live Full Service Self-employedTurboTax Live PremierTurboTax Live Self-employedTurboTax Mobile Apps DeluxeTurboTax Mobile Apps FreeTurboTax Mobile Apps PremierTurboTax Mobile Apps Self-employedTurboTax Online DeluxeTurboTax Online FreeTurboTax Online PremierTurboTax Online Self-employed
Dynamic AdsDynamic Ads