I’m gonna let you in on a secret: one of the best travel tools is already downloaded on your phone.
You probably already use Google Maps to get from point A to point B, but did you know you can also use it to simplify your vacation planning and remember your favorite spots?
Yes, y’all. I’m about to change your traveling life.
Google Maps allows you to save locations on your phone. You might have done this in the past to save your parking spot or remember a friend’s address, but this feature can be an invaluable tool for storing your travel itinerary.
How to use the Google Maps Save Feature:
Saving places is so easy. Simply search the location and click the bookmark-shaped “SAVE” button. From there you can save it to different lists (such as “Rome Trip!,” or “Worldwide Library Bucket List”).
There’s also the option to label otherwise unmarked addresses, so you can save the location of your AirBnB or pin personal landmarks you want to remember (i.e. “Marathon 2018 Finish Line,” “First Date, June 2016”).
Ways in Which I Have Just Changed Your Life:
Plan Your Trip and Save Time
Before every trip, I make sure to plug in the key locations into my app. I save any landmarks and attractions we want to visit, the address of where we’re staying, the main train stations, restaurants and bars that are in our price range, and maybe even the location of the US Embassy if I’m feeling extra detailed. This way we aren’t reeling in a French round-about with charging cords tangling everywhere while one of us is yelling from the drivers’ seat and the other is in a pretzel shape, struggling to painstakingly type the digits of the hotel address.
With those locations saved beforehand, you not only save time by not having to look things up over and over, but you can also visualize where things are in relation to each other. For instance, for your trip to London, you might’ve planned to do Shakespeare’s Globe and the Borough Market on different days but once you saved them, you can see they’re right next to each other. Time waste avoided!
Solve First World Hanger Problems
How many times have you found yourself stumbling out of a museum on the brink of a hangry outburst with only expensive, touristy restaurants in sight? By researching eateries in your price range beforehand, you can easily search for the perfect lunch spot nearby, saving time and gaining quality.
This doesn’t just apply to traveling out of town. When someone suggests a new restaurant near the office, you can quickly mark it in you Favorites so you remember to check it out later. I keep a steady list of restaurants, museums, and stores I want to check out in my area.
Easily Share with Friends and Family
Next time someone asks you for the fiftieth time what they should do in that one city, it’s as easy as sharing a link to your list!
Have a big family reunion coming up? Or a lot of people coming from out of town for your wedding? Lisa and I made a Google Map of our favorite sights and eats in Boston for our wedding reception. It was an easy way to hand out our personalized recommendations and also give some #Chelisa history (marking where I went to school, etc.).
Keep Track of Personal Landmarks
Using the labeling option, you can keep track of all kinds of personal landmarks. Save the locations/dates of your favorite hikes, mark places you’ve competed, bookstores you absolutely loved, or fitness studios you’ve been waiting to try on Class Pass. Professionally, maybe you want to create a set list of cafes that have worked great for meetings or want to curate a map of quiet spaces to get some sh*t done. I’m just spit-balling here.
Build Your Ultimate Travel Bucketlist
When you see a really amazing picture of a cool hike or of a beautiful library, or . . . you know . . . when you’re reading an extremely well written and otherwise incredible blog post by a gorgeous queer lady about a place you absolutely want to go see—simply save it to your bucket list on Google Maps.
The implications of this feature are endlessly customizable! You’re welcome.