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4 hidden tricks in Google Maps that you probably don't know but should


Angela Lang / CNET

Driving is stressful enough, but it becomes an even bigger task when you can't find a parking space or lose a signal and a turn is coming soon. Fortunately, the Google Maps app for Android and iPhone ($ 699 on Amazon) can remove some of the driving stress with some of its hidden features.

You probably know that with the Google Maps app, you can save addresses ̵

1; like work and home – so you can get directions to your places you travel frequently with a touch. You can also get information about a place – including what to eat, where to say and what to do – to help you make the most of a trip.

But Google Maps can help you with other tasks you may not know about, such as letting you download a map to use offline, include stops in driving time to get more accurate time for destination and even help you find somewhere to park. Read on to learn how to use these features so your trip is super smooth.

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Use Maps offline

It never fails – when you most need directions, your phone loses its signal at the most inopportune time. Fortunately, Google Maps allows you to download your itinerary in advance so you never have to worry about getting lost.

1. Enter your destination in the Google Maps application.

2. At the bottom of the screen, touch the name of the place or address.

3. Touch the three-point menu in the upper right corner.

4. Touch Download the offline map .

5. Touch Download . The map for your selected area will now be available offline.

Plan the route for your entire trip, including stops

If Google says your trip will take seven hours but ultimately eight, it may be because you did not include many stops along the way. Google Maps allows you to add stops to get more accurate destination time.

1. Enter your first destination, such as a gas station or cafe, in the Google Maps application.

2. Touch Directions .

3. Touch the three-point menu in the upper right corner.

4. Tap Add a stop . Add as many stops as you expect to take.

5. Press Done when you have finished adding the stops. You will now receive a more accurate ETA when planning your trips.

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Screenshot by Katie Connor / CNET

Easily Finding Your Car's Parking Area

Knowing where you can and can't park your car is essential, especially if you're late for work, attending a huge event like a gig, or driving to an unfamiliar neighborhood. Instead of walking around and hoping to eventually find a parking space, use Google Maps to point you in the right direction.

1. Enter your location in the Google Maps app.

2. Touch Directions .

3. You will see the icon P until the expected time required to reach this place. Touch P P (for parking). If P is red, this means that parking will be restricted. Blue means that finding a parking lot will be easy or medium challenging

4. Find a parking lot .

5. A list of parking areas will appear. Select one of the options and touch Add Parking . The parking space will be added as the first stop along your route and you can continue on to your next destination.

See how a place looks before you go

Photos can be deceiving, so first check it out on Google Maps before booking a hotel that looks good.

1. Search for a location similar to a hotel in which you can stay in the Google Maps app.

2. In the lower left corner you will notice a small box with a picture of the building. This is a street view of the area, so touch it to see how it looks.

3. You can zoom in and out and check the area by swiping your finger across the screen.

Want more tips from Google Maps? See Avoid Speed ​​Traps: Google Maps on the iPhone finally Gets the Most Controversial Waze Function and Google Maps Navigates You A Million Times Better Now. Get crackin '# .

Originally published earlier this week.

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