When you open Google Maps, it’s usually either for somewhere you’ve never been before, or a location you visit all the time. The app makes it easy to find a new restaurant or venue or try, but it’s just as good for monitoring traffic on your daily commute. We all have a host of frequent locations we enter into Google Maps by hand—so why not make it easier on yourself?
Saving your frequent or favorite locations is a great way to keep those places handy when you need them. It also doubles as a great way to collect your recommendations for what to do in a particular city. If your friend is visiting New York, and you know some killer spots, you can quickly put together a list and share it with them.
This feature is available on both the iOS and Android versions of Google Maps, and is accessible wherever you use the service. To start, pull up one of your frequent locations in Google Maps. Swipe through the various options here (Directions, Start, Order, etc.), then tap “Save.” Here, you’ll see all available lists, which you might already have by default from Google. For example, my lists include “Favorites,” “Want to go,” “Travel plans,” and “Starred places.”
Tap any of these existing lists to add your location to them. You can also add a note about the location if you’d like (e.g. “Order extra chili oil” or “Don’t park in front of that person’s house). To create a new list of frequent places, tap “New list” in the top right. You can give the list a name, like “Favorite Local Restaurants,” a description for the list, and whether the list is Private (only visible by you), Shared (you can let friends check it out), or Public (your list shows up for anyone to see, complete with your name and profile picture).
Personally, it’s a “no” for me on that last option, but I can see some practical applications for it. If you’re an expert in your city or area, or you’re fresh off a trip and you have some strong recommendations, publishing a list to the whole of Google Maps could be a good use of your experience. If you end up wanting to share your list to the world, there’s an easy “Publish” button on the list you can use any time.
Once you add a location to your list, you can tap “Add” to keep adding more. Of course, you can repeat the steps above to do the same. Any items you do add to a list will appear in the map with a clear label, so you won’t lose them as you look for things to do.
That’s it! Curate your lists however you like. Lump all your favorites together in one place, or sort them by type. If you’re a particularly organized person, I imagine you can make quite a few micro-categories to catalog each and every favorite spot in your maps. If you’re more like me, they’re all going into a folder labeled “Places.”
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