Discover the Power of Advanced Google Maps Features Today

17 Advanced Google Maps Features Everyone Should Know 

Google has become essential in life in the past few years. It’s like a family member we can’t just be without. 

Whenever we have a question, our mind probably thinks, 'let's Google that!'

But another app that has taken an important place in our life is Google Map! How often have you used Google Maps to check the directions to unknown places, planning a road trip? 

We bet many times! 

So, now it's time to take this bond further by learning an advanced feature of Google Maps. These are features that not many people have an idea about! 

So, let’s get started! 

Discover the Power of Advanced Google Maps Features Today

1. Auto Delete Google Map History 

Freaking over the fact that you are always under the radar? 

Then this Google Maps feature is something you will adore. 

Google lets users delete their Google Maps information after a while. Users can auto delete data after 3 months, 18 months, and 36 months. 

Here's how to access this feature: 

  • First, open Google and navigate to 
  • Open Location > History > Choose an auto-delete option.
  • To delete everything it's captured until now, click Manage History > [gear icon] > Delete all Location History.

Here’s a screenshot of autodeleting location history on Google:


2. Find an Electric Vehicle Charging Station 

Own a Tesla or an electric vehicle? 

If yes, you know how hard it is to find the nearest charging station to you when your car has a low battery! 

But no more! This Google Map feature will let you find EV charging stations nearest to you. 

Simply search for "EV Charging" in Google Map, And Voila! 

Here’s a screenshot of Google Maps showing EV charging stations in New York:


3. Know Your Speed, Speed Limit, And Speed Traps 

Ever got pulled over for speeding? 

If yes, then you know how costly it can be. 

Now, thanks to Google Maps feature, you will never have to worry about getting pulled for overspending. 

Just add your Google Maps in navigation mode. The app will tell you your road speed limit and vehicle speed. 

Also, in some areas, Google Maps will warn you about speed traps and cameras that users have reported. These speed traps are shown by icons that appear while browsing directions. 

Additionally, maps will verbally let you know of speed traps when you are near. Although these features are enabled by default, some users will have to enable them manually. 

  • Just go to Settings > Navigation Settings > Driving Options.

Here’s a screenshot of the navigation settings:


4. Now, Navigate Inside Malls 

Ever lost directions when surfing malls? 

Many have. So, what if we tell you, you will never lose your way to the mall? 


With the help of Google Maps! Yes, Google Maps is not just for roads but also works inside some malls. 

Read: Leverage The Strength Of Local SEO & Gain Local Dominance

If you are in big malls, you can see the inside layout of malls to search for your favorite brand stores. However, this option will be limited since not all maps allow inside access. 

Here’s how to use this feature: 

  • Open your Google Maps app. 
  • Search for the mall you want to visit. A directory tab would appear. 
  • The directory will contain a list of brand stores inside that specific mall. You can choose any of them, and Google Maps will show you the directions inside the mall. 

Yay! You do not have to search an entire mall just to find your favorite brand store. 

Here’s a screenshot of Google Maps displaying a mall’s directory:


5. Know Traffic While Commuting Before You Leave 

Many people, especially in large cities like New York, commute long distances for jobs. 

The traffic can get heavy, which can cause delays at work. 

Google Maps can keep you informed about daily traffic conditions before you leave for commuting. This way, you can manage your time. 

Google Maps can also read your calendar information and adjust the notifications based on events. For example, your scheduled meeting. 

Here's how to take advantage of this feature:

  • You will need to define your commuting time and location. You can define it by Settings > Commute > Settings. 
  • Once your prerequisites are set, head over to Settings > Notification > Commute.

Here’s a screenshot of the notifications screen in settings:


6. Save Your Favorite Places And Name Them Too! 

Google Maps has a feature that lets users save their favorite spots for future browsing or sharing. It's simple. 

  • Just tap on your favorite places and spots and, within the bottom bar, look for the options named Save.
  • Just tap on Save, and you can save them in your default lists, such as favorites or custom lists. You can either keep these lists private or make them available to the public. 

Now, how about giving custom names to these favorite spots? Here's how you can do it. 

  • The trick is to tap on the businesses or places you want to give a custom name. 
  • Now tap the white bar at the bottom of the screen, 
  • Then click on those three dots on the upper right of the screen and select "Add label" from the menu. Type the custom name, and voilà! 

Next time you search for these businesses or places, Google Maps will label the place by custom name. 

Here’s a screenshot of the ‘Save’ option:


7. Become A Local Guide 

Know your city or location by heart? If the answer is 'YES', then get a chance to become a local guide. 

What is a local guide, anyway? 

A local guide is a volunteer position that allows you to contribute to Google Maps. Although any normal user can leave reviews and tips on Google Maps, it's not the same with local guides. 

One of the major perks of being a local guide is badges, rewards, and points that Google awards to show their appreciation for volunteering. 

It is worth looking at if you leave tons of reviews every time you visit a new place or location. 

So, who can become a local guide? 

Anyone above 18 living in one of the 40 supported countries can become a local guide. ‘

Here’s how the rewards work: 

  • For every action you take, Google will give you points. For example, reviews get 10 points, photos get 5 points, videos get 7 points, etc. You can look for more information about rewards on Google’s official site
  • Unlike Google Play points, these rewards never expire. 
  • As you collect more points, you will start getting the badge. For example, local guides with 250 points will receive the first badge for ‘4 point star”. 

Here’s a screenshot of a user receiving a special award for collecting points:


8. Put Your Google Maps In Offline Mode 

Have you ever faced a situation where you need to know the directions urgently, but signals fail? 

You know how frustrating it is to get lost somewhere you don't even have a signal! Fortunately for you, Google can understand your pain because Google Maps now can work in offline mode! 

So, next time you have to go somewhere, simply use Google Maps in offline mode. And voila! You are ready for bad network signals. 

Read: Offline Advertising Tips for Local Businesses

With offline mode, Google Maps lets you download your route ahead of time so that you never have to worry about getting lost or losing a signal at an unknown place with no map.

Here's how to use Google Maps in offline mode: 

  • In Google Maps, enter your destination. 
  • At the bottom of the screen, tap the place's name or address. 
  • Tap the three-dot menu in the right corner. 
  • Click on the offline download map.
  • Click on download. Now, the map of your route will be available offline.

Here’s a screenshot of the offline maps page:


9. Planning A Long Trip With Several Stops? Add Them In Map.

It's not uncommon for people to use Google Maps to plan long-distance journeys.

However, there is one thing that you should consider. The time told by Google Maps will be only for straight journeys without stopping. 

If you are going to stop in between your journey, add them to your route to account for the time. 

Google Maps lets you add the stop to get the accurate time needed to reach the destination. Here's how you can do that 

  • Open Google Maps. Enter your first destination.
  • Tap on ‘Directions’.
  • Click the three-dot menu in the top right corner. 
  • Tap on ‘Add Stop’.
  • Press ‘Done’ after you have added all the stops. Now you have the accurate time to reach your destination. 

Here’s a screenshot of the ‘Add Stop’ option:


10. No Idea Where to Park? Use Google Maps.

Ever parked your car in an area thinking it was safe but ended up with a parking ticket? 

If yes, then you are not alone. Knowing where to park and where not can be frustrating, especially when you are late for work or in an unfamiliar area. 

Here's how to use Google Maps to help you point out the right parking space 

  • Go to Google Maps. Enter the location.
  • Tap on Directions.
  • You will have the P icon next to the estimated time it will need you to reach the destination. Tap on this P icon. P here means parking. If you see red, it means the area has limited parking space. And if you see blue, moderate space. 
  • Now tap on Find Parking.
  • Maps will show you the list of available slots. Select one of these slots and tap on Add parking. The parking stop is now the first stop in your route. Maps will show you the direction. 

Here’s a screenshot of Google Maps displaying parking spaces:


11. Hail A Cab! Yes, Literally. 

This might come as a shock to many, but yes, Google Maps does let you book a ticket. 

So next time you want to hail an Uber or Lyft, do yourself some favor and book directly from Google Map

Here's how you can book the ticket from Google Maps 

  • Within Google Maps, search for the location you want to go to. 
  • Now search the screen for the icon that looks like a waving hand in the air as if it signals a taxi to stop. 
  • On clicking this icon, Google Maps will show you current Uber and Lyft prices and wait times. 
  • And from there, you can directly book a cab and travel to your destination, which allows you directly hop into either of the apps. 

Here’s a screenshot of the Google Map feature that lets you hail a cab:


12. Get Recommendations From Maps 

Out of ideas about visiting new places? 

Worry not; Google Maps can help. 

Google Maps have recently added a recommendation feature for users. It shows recommended places like restaurants, malls, and tourist places Google has chosen for you. 

These recommendations are generally based on the places you have visited and the Maps of history. 

Now, if you want to change the recommendations. Here's how you can do it

  • Open the Google Maps app. 
  • Tap the Cog icon in the top left corner. 
  • You can now add the new place that you want Google to recommend.

Here’s a screenshot of Google Maps displaying attractions recommendations:


13. Enter Real-Life Science Fiction With The AR Feature Of Google Maps 

It's really hard to find directions in crowded places. That's where Google's AR features come in handy.

  • While on foot and using navigation mode, tap the little AR button—which resembles a pin inside a box.
  • Now, Maps will ask you to hold your phone in front of you, and the app will then show you directions using the nearby buildings and directions. 
  • Look through the camera on your phone. You will see arrows overlaid on top of the directions. This will help you understand what directions you need to go. 

Here’s what the AR feature in Google Maps looks like:


14. Avoid Crowds 

People avoid crowded places for many reasons. Some because of claustrophobia, while others for safety reasons. Whatever might be the case, the new Google Maps feature can help you avoid crowds. 

Recently, Google rolled out a new G-Maps feature called ‘area busyness’. This feature provides live updates about the busyness in a specific area. This means users can see how crowded the place would be at a particular time. 

Here’s how to use this feature to avoid crowds: 

  • To use this feature, simply search for locations you want to visit. 
  • Google Maps will label the areas as ‘busy’ depending on the crowd. 
  • By tapping on ‘Busy area’ you can get the full information of when the place is busiest at different times. 

Here’s a screenshot of Google Maps displaying ‘Busy area’ over a location:


To get these busyness alerts of specific areas, you can opt for Google Maps alert. It will notify you of the latest information about the place. 

Read: How to Rank Higher in Google Maps

15. Share Your Live Location 

Sometimes, your family or friends might want to know your live location. At such times, Google Maps' live location feature can come in handy. 

Whether you’ve lost your way to a friend’s new home or are stuck in an unknown area, the Live location feature is an excellent way to escape this tricky situation. 

Here's how to share the live location with others: 

  • Go to Google Maps
  • Tap your profile picture. You must be signed in to a Google Maps account to use this feature. 
  • Now click on location sharing > New share. 
  • It will provide the location link. Copy this link using 'Copy to Clipboard'.

Here’s a screenshot of the live location sharing screen:


Now you can just paste this live location link on any app like WhatsApp so people can find your location. 

16. Inbuilt Voice Commands 

At some point, we all have been guilty of glancing down at our phones while looking at when the next turn is or how much time is left.

Now, this can be quite dangerous. So, we have one Google Map tip for you. It uses voice commands. 

This feature is currently only available for Android phones. 

So, Google Maps has its own set of built-in voice commands that work whenever you are in between navigation. But how to activate them? 

Simple. All you need to say is, ‘Hey Google’’. Or you can activate Google Assistant. 

You can now shout commands. For example: 

  • Hey Google, how is the traffic ahead?
  • Show me the alternative route. 
  • Hey Google, find me a restaurant.

You can now book your appointments, make a call, and play music without glancing at the screen or taking your eyes off the road! 

These are just some possibilities of using voice commands inside Google Maps. You can explore more, and maybe you will find more hidden gems. 

You can also activate Google Assistant by tapping on the mic button:


17. Time Travel Through Street View 

Ever wanted to travel through time? 

Well, it looks like Google just accepted your wish! 

Google Maps has an intriguing feature that lets you travel through time. You don’t have to be stuck with how the place currently looks. Google lets you view how the street or places looked years ago. 

Although not every place is covered through this feature. 

Many places are! And the best thing is that it does not limit you to the location you are currently present. You can explore places all around the world with this feature.

Here’s how you can travel through time with Google Maps: 

1. Open Google Maps > Launch Street View. 

2. Now, click on the clock shape in the top left corner of your street view screen.

3. Google Maps will now show you all the images it has taken over years of that specific location. 

Here’s a screenshot of changing the time at which street images were taken:


Advanced Google Maps Features - FAQs

1. What Are Some Advanced Google Maps Features Most People Don’t Know About? 

Google Maps remain unexplored territory. Most people just limit themselves to basic functions. But Maps has much more features than just showing direction. 

Some advanced features are as follows: 

  • Time Travel 
  • In-built voice commands
  • Place recommendations
  • Finding parking space, etc. 

2. How to Check Parking Availability in Any Area Using Google Maps?

Here’s how to find parking availability in a specific location.

1. Open Google Maps. 

2. Set the current location as the starting position and choose a destination. 

3. Now, Google Maps will show all the available parking spots from your starting point to destination points using the ‘P’ icon. 

4. Click on the Find parking button to locate nearby parking spots. Once you find an ideal spot, click on ‘Add parking’. 

5. Now, tap the Start button to start the navigation. 

3. What Happens When You Turn On Incognito Mode On Google Maps?

Incognito mode works similarly to Chrome browsers. This means you can use Google Maps, but Google won’t save your information. 

4. How To Share Your Live Location Through Google Maps?

  • Open Google Maps. 
  • Tap on your profile picture on the initial. 
  • Select Location sharing > New Share. 
  • Choose how long you want to share your location. 
  • Maps will show the list of apps or contacts to share your location. 

Key Takeaways

  • Put your Google Maps in incognito mode if you don’t want Google to track your data and search history. 
  • Use AR mode to understand the right direction by pointing your camera in front of you. 
  • Use in-built voice commands for a hand-free experience. E.g., 'Hey Google, show me the nearest parking spot'. 
  • Share your live location with your friends or vice versa by using Location sharing> New share function from your profile. 
  • Use the time travel feature of Google Maps to view how the street or place looked. 
  • Use recommendation features to get a new recommendation personalized by Google. These are based on your user history and searches. 

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Brice Decker

Brice has been handling marketing projects for more than 12 years and he is providing consulting services on SEO, Social Media and PPC. He has a huge expertise in working at large corporations including Accenture Interactive & PwC Digital Services.


Brice Decker

Brice has been handling marketing projects for more than 12 years and he is providing consulting services on SEO, Social Media and PPC. He has a huge expertise in working at large corporations including Accenture Interactive & PwC Digital Services.

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