THE SOURCE FOR TECH BUYING ADVICE
Here’s how to use Google Maps without an internet connection
- Install the Google Maps smartphone app and sign in to your Google account
- Tap on your profile picture > Offline maps > Create a new offline map
- Select the area you want to save offline
- Download your map
Google Maps can be an essential tool for finding your way around a new area, but if you don’t have an internet connection then you could be left out in the cold.
Be it you’re trying to conserve your limited mobile data or you’re traveling abroad and don’t want to pay for the charges there are several reasons you might not have an internet connection – but all is not lost.
You can download an offline version of Google Maps to your smartphone so that you can use it whether you have a connection or not. It’s not the easiest-to-find feature though, so here’s how to download Google Maps and use it offline.
Tools and Requirements
- A smartphone
- Google Maps smartphone app
To start with you’re going to need to download the Google Maps app to your iPhone or Android smartphone. If it isn’t already installed you can find it in the Apple App Store(opens in new tab) or Google Play Store.
Once it’s installed and you’ve signed into your Google account, tap on your profile picture in the top right corner of Google Maps. From here you’ll see a menu option for Offline maps, tap this and you can either see the maps you already have downloaded or can create a new offline map.
- Tap Create a new offline map. Using the same pinch and drag controls you use with regular Google Maps you can move a highlighted rectangle around the globe to select what area you want to save offline.
- Once you’ve found the right spot hit download and your map will download the next time you’re on WiFi.
While the offline version won’t offer all the benefits of Google Maps online (like live traffic updates) it will still be able to guide you using your phone’s GPS – a system that works even if you’re disconnected from the internet.
Another thing to watch out for is that these offline maps will take up a fair amount of your phone’s storage. Try to download only as much as you need or you may find you have to start deleting apps and other data from your phone in order to store your map collection.
If you want to find out about other cool Google Maps tricks we have a guide that’ll teach you about five things you didn’t know Google Maps could do. And when you’re with that, be sure to check out our follow-up that teaches you about five more hidden Google Maps features.