Planning Your Vacation Itinerary Has Never Been Easier With This Clever Google Maps Hack

Google offers some of the top tools available to travel lovers — and most of them are completely free. Many budget travelers use the Google Flights search engine to find the cheapest flights for any trip, and searching for hotels has never been so easy as it is when you simply type hotels and browse through the options that pop up on Google Maps. You may use Google Sheets to plan out your travel budget and ensure that you stay on track, or easily share a Google Doc with all of your travel arrangements and information with a group of friends and family members.

Due to Google's advanced GPS technology and constant upgrades to photos, the maps allow travelers to take a virtual tour of any city. By selecting the street view and scrolling through real photos, you can even get a feel for a potential neighborhood where you may be considering booking a hotel or Airbnb. There are so many ways to use Google's many functions to plan the perfect vacation, but one clever Google Maps hack takes the cake as the all-time best free trip-planning tool. You can save all of your dream destinations and activities to convenient lists, so that you can pull them up on the go during your vacations. Download the Google Maps app to your device, and get ready for some seriously easy travel planning. 

How to save locations and create lists using Google

To use this easy and convenient Google Maps feature, you'll first want to create a Saved List for the country you want to visit. You'll want to ensure that you're logged into your Google account, so that you can access the list from any device you own that shares the same account. Once you've opened the app, click where it says "Saved" at the very bottom of the screen. It should be the middle option between "Go" and "Contribute." Once you click, a list will pop up of options like "Favorites" and "Want To Go." Click the button that says "New List" at the top of the screen. Title your list and give it a description. You can choose to create a list for the entire country or create individual lists for each city you plan on visiting. Whenever you sit down to work on planning your vacation, you can easily add destinations.

Imagine you're planning a trip to Paris, and the Louvre Museum is at the top of your list. Type "Louvre" into your Google Map search. When it pops up, click "Save" and then select the list you've created for Paris. You can add notes about why you wanted to visit, links, and prices. Once you arrive in Paris, you can pull up your list and see every single spot you've saved on the map. It's super helpful and saves tons of time when you're out sightseeing.

Create the ultimate travel bucket-list as you go

This feature is also a convenient way to bookmark all kinds of places you find interesting for future travel. I love to keep a list on Google of all the destinations I hope to one day visit and add to them every time an activity catches my eye. Next time you're scrolling through Instagram and you see an influencer post pictures of a cute cafe in some faraway land, pause the video, get the name of the cafe, and head to your Google list where you can flag the location. You can also screenshot images and do a reverse Google image search to find out where they're located.

Once you've mastered this travel hack, pre-planning your vacations becomes insanely easy. Keep a list of each country you'd like to visit and simply add pins each time you see something that looks interesting to you, whether it's on Instagram, TikTok, your favorite travel blog, or on television. When you do get around to traveling to any given country, simply pull up your list and then take a peek at the map view. Places with the most flagged locations are areas that you should base yourself during your trip, and then plan day trips to attractions that are a bit further out. This way, you'll be sure not to miss out on any of the places you've found interesting and inspiring, and with very little effort, you've planned the perfect trip.