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How to Plan a Trip Using Google Maps Trip Planner 🚗

Learn how to use Google Maps as a trip planner with our tutorial for creating custom travel itineraries and routes for your road trip 🟢🔴🟡🔵

Google Maps has become an indispensable trip planning tool for travelers. With versatile features like saved places, custom maps, and route optimization, Google Maps makes planning your next trip easy. This article will provide a comprehensive tutorial on using Google Maps to plan the perfect vacation.

Use Google Maps to Plan Your Next Trip

Google Maps is one of the best route planners and trip planning apps available today. Its intuitive interface and wealth of information help travelers build personalized itineraries with ease. You can save destinations to revisit later, create shareable custom maps, get directions, and more using Google Maps.

Getting Started with Google Maps Trip Planner

To begin using Google Maps as your trip planner, start by saving places you’d like to visit to your Google account. On desktop or mobile, search for a location and click “Save” on its info page to add it to a list like “Want to go.” This lets you refind spots and curate potential trip destinations as you discover them.

How to Plan a Trip Using Google Maps Trip Planner 🚗
How to Plan a Trip Using Google Maps Trip Planner 🚗
How to Plan a Trip Using Google Maps Trip Planner 🚗

Build a Custom Google Map for Trip Planning

One of the best ways to use Google Maps for trip planning is to build a custom map. On desktop, open Google My Maps and click “Create New Map” to get started. Give your map a name and description, then use the search box to locate places you’ve saved or want to visit and click “Add to map.” Customize each point with notes and photos.

How to Plan a Trip Using Google Maps Trip Planner 🚗

Use layers to categorize places, like making one layer for each day or city. You can also visualize routes by adding driving, biking or walking directions between stops on a layer. Once finished, your custom Google map gives an organized overview of your whole trip that you can access on any device by signing into your Google account.

How to Plan a Trip Using Google Maps Trip Planner 🚗
How to Plan a Trip Using Google Maps Trip Planner 🚗

Optimize Your Route in Google Maps

As a route planner, Google Maps makes planning a road trip easy. Enter your starting point and destination, then add multiple stops along the way by clicking “Add stop” after starting navigation. Google Maps will optimize the route for shortest distance or fastest drive time.

How to Plan a Trip Using Google Maps Trip Planner 🚗
How to Plan a Trip Using Google Maps Trip Planner 🚗
How to Plan a Trip Using Google Maps Trip Planner 🚗
How to Plan a Trip Using Google Maps Trip Planner 🚗

You can also select your mode of transport like driving, biking or walking to get directions tailored to that. For longer trips spanning multiple destinations, create a custom Google map with a directions layer linking them sequentially. This allows you to visualize your whole route at a glance.

Discover Places with Google Maps

An underutilized but powerful Google Maps feature is its extensive database of over 200 million businesses and points of interest around the world. Every place card includes average user ratings and reviews, allowing you to gauge whether a restaurant, hotel or attraction is worth visiting.

How to Plan a Trip Using Google Maps Trip Planner 🚗
How to Plan a Trip Using Google Maps Trip Planner 🚗
How to Plan a Trip Using Google Maps Trip Planner 🚗
How to Plan a Trip Using Google Maps Trip Planner 🚗

As you find interesting places, save them to lists like “Restaurants” and “Accommodations” so you can reference them later while trip planning. And if you come across an undiscovered gem, leave a review for fellow travelers.

Google Maps On the Go

The Google Maps app for iPhone and Android makes an excellent on-the-go trip companion. It syncs all your saved places and custom maps automatically, allowing you to navigate to any destination right from your phone. Layers let you toggle different day plans or place categories on and off.

And you can still discover new places enroute and save them to lists for future trips. So Google Maps helps not just with early travel planning, but also discovering destinations during your travels.

Why Google Maps Is the Best Travel Planning Tool

Between its many features and accessibility across devices, Google Maps has become a versatile one-stop shop for travel planning. Creating shareable custom maps complete with photo notes makes coordinating any trip easy.

Optimizable driving directions including multiple stops let you plan intricate road trips to a T. And the vast database of crowdsourced reviews helps guarantee you visit only the can’t-miss attractions. Whether planning adventures across continents or a weekend getaway, Google Maps has all the tools to make mapping your travel seamless.

Create a Map for Your Next Road Trip

If you’re planning a road trip, Google Maps has you covered. Add a directions layer between destinations to visualize your route. Click “Add directions” then select driving and insert your starting point, stops along the way, and final destination.

Customize this layer by changing the color and thickness of the route line. You can also manually adjust the route by clicking and dragging sections, or optimize it for shortest distance versus fastest drive time. A mapped road trip layer gives you an at-a-glance overview of your journey before you ever leave home.

Access and Share Your Custom Google Maps on Mobile

The custom maps you create on desktop sync automatically to the Google Maps app on your iPhone, Android or tablet when signed into the same account. You can then use your maps on-the-go to navigate to any saved destinations or route layers.

In the app, tap “Saved” then “Maps” to view all your custom trip planning maps. Click pins to see your notes or get walking directions. You can also tap the base map icon while viewing a My Map to toggle between map themes like road or satellite view.

When your custom Google map is complete, access the share button on desktop to invite others to view or edit. This gives trip companions access for coordinating plans, and lets you embed the map to share your epic journey!

How to Plan a Trip Using Google Maps Trip Planner 🚗

The next time wanderlust strikes, skip the overwhelming travel guides and leverage Google Maps as your trip planner instead. In only a few clicks, you can craft that unforgettable itinerary made just for you. So plan your trip with help from the world’s favorite map and navigation app – Google Maps.

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