Six Things You Should be Using Google Maps For

Woman traveling

Google maps. It’s nothing new, in fact you probably already use it frequently on all your devices. But have you ever used it for anything other than just for directional purposes? We’re here to make your life a whole lot easier, in just the click of a button. When you stop just using it as a maps-app (catchy, we know) you’ll quickly fall in love with all its features, and possibly wonder how you ever lived without it!


One thing we should mentioned before we start – in order to use some of these features, you will have to allow Google Maps to ‘always’ access your location. This is something you will have to enable in your phones setting.


Planning Ahead

Whether you’re an avid public transit user, or only hop on the bus occasionally, your day just got a whole lot easier. Not only will Google tell you which route to take, but it will also tell you when the next bus/train is coming so you can plan accordingly.

If you drive, you can now search ‘petrol/gas’ to find out and compare gas prices, and easily navigate to the best one. If you’re on a road trip, you can easily enter in multiple destinations so you can create the most efficient route. If you’re on vacation, you can even search ‘bike docks’ to find out where the nearest location is to you (so you don’t get charged for being a few minutes over). Depending on the popularity of them, it can even tell you how many bikes are left at each station!


Restaurant-ing Better

Planning a Sunday brunch on the fly just got easier. Thanks to Googles one-stop-shop you can now find a place close to you by searching in your food cravings, look up their menu and even book a table (or get food delivered – depending on the restaurant). However, what we really love is how you can easily check restaurant wait times. By checking the google listing on your phone, you can see what the ‘live time’ is like. Google compares it to the restaurants typical busy-rate, and then let’s you know if the time you’re aiming to be there would be busy or not – thus allowing you to call ahead or choose another spot.


Saving Data while Traveling

Traveling out of the country, and don’t want to chew up your data for navigational purposes? You can easily download maps offline, so you can still use your phone while you’re traveling and won’t get charged for data use.

You can even create your own map layers (say, California Rooftop Bars and California Markets) that allow you to see what location you’re near, and plan your trip accordingly.


Never Lose Your Parked Car Again

Have you ever been to a busy airport (or Ikea!) and been in such a panic, that you forget where you parked your car? Don’t laugh, it happens to the best of us. Thankfully Google came up with a less embarrassing way to find it, although we can imagine wandering around with your loot for hours could be fun (not!).

Next time you hop out of your vehicle, open up Google Maps, and tap and hold the blue dot that shows you where you are. When the menu pops up, select “set at parking location”. This will leave a marker on your app so you can pull it up when you’re ready to leave!

Tip: by doing this same action, you can also select “Share location” and you can send it to your friends so they can easily find you in that same store.


Staying Organized

Have you ever read about a hotel you’d like to visit, or drove past a cool café you’d like to check out – only you can never seem to remember the name when the time comes? Start organizing yourself on Google Maps by ‘saving’ the locations. Tap on the location and hit ‘Save’. This will allow you to flag it, favourite it or create your own list (with notes) so you’ll never forget that amazing spot again!


Multi-tasking Better

This one is for those who find themselves so busy that they may only have one hand to do all their google searching needs. Did you know that you no longer need two hands to zoom in? That’s right, you can now use one hand if you find yourself in that situation. Just double tap the screen then hold down, and it will zoom in for you!