In this day and age, many users online are looking to create maps, routes, and get around. Many applications can give you the best route between two points, and it gets more complicated when we talk about a route with multiple destinations.
The focus of this article will be to cover the top tips for driving directions, multiple stops, and addresses. We will cover a few apps and include many tips and tricks, notably for Google Maps and also for MapQuest, which has recently relaunched its popular app. We hope you find this useful!
Table of Contents
The Basics of Driving Routes
What We are Covering
There are many reasons to find the best driving routes with many stops. In this article, we will not go into the depth of some of the more advanced functionalities of route making. For instance, We are not covering in-depth about route optimization or route planning. We are instead going to speak to more specific tips and tricks about general use cases. If you are so inclined to go more in-depth about route planning, we’ve written an article on that.
To learn more
Who are we Writing For?
There are a variety of users who would require route planning for driving directions with multiple destinations. This list includes delivery drivers, a small business owner, road trips, or anyone with appointments. We’re going to cover some answers to many of the questions from these groups.
Which App is Best for Multiple Addresses?
There are many searches for apps to download on the app store, Play Store, on Windows, or online. Some of these paid apps offer a free trial, yet we are going to talk about two apps that cost no money. Mostly, two apps stand above the rest in this regard. We are talking about Google Maps and MapQuest.
We are going to cover these apps in particular for a few reasons:
- They both offer a choice of web-based (browser), tablet, and Mobile device (phone) apps;
- The fact that of widespread availability;
- Experience and quality of service;
- Available online instructions and support.
Depending on your route and map needs, you may want to choose another product. For example, there is Optimap and RouteXL. We may write other articles and write notes on these in the future. For now, we will look at the industry leaders. Let us know in the feedback if you wanted to hear more about other software that plot routes and maps.
Top Tips to Plan my Route with Driving Directions
In this section, we compiled a list of the best tips and tricks to get you going the best route possible. We took inspiration from Time Magazine’s tips for google maps as well as some other tips.
- Create Goals and Targets: The first step is to identify what your goals are for the route that you want to make. If you are planning a road trip, then you will want to know your final destination. Regardless of the road, you’ll want to know the number of destinations that you want to visit. So the starting point for you as the user is to note what is critical for you in this route, and what you are looking to accomplish.
- Check addresses: It is critical to double-check addresses, and make sure that you have the right ones. Delivery drivers run into this problem very often. It’s always good to double-check the zip code and to use the route planner to help validate the integrity of the information.
- Compare the routes: One other thing that you’ll be able to do with most apps is to compare a route option against another route option. When you look at the map, you can examine where each route is taking you, and you can ofter change the route order so that you can find the best one for you.
- Ensure you have the right route planner: A route planner is essential when planning several routes, or even just one route. They all have a map feature, which is essential.
- For multiple addresses, use MapQuest: Many route navigation apps only allow for a maximum of 2 stops; the advantage of MapQuest is that it allows users to create routes with up to 26. It features an optimize feature, as well. Users can choose the direct distance route or shortest time route. This is the most useful tool when you are hitting many destinations like in delivery and shipping, field services, or small couriers.
- Look into getting a GPS: A GPS device, or a global positioning device, is a tool that can help handle your routes or road trips. In many commercial vehicles, there will be a physical GPS device as well as a route planner app on the smartphone. These devices will guide the vehicle from stop to stop with voice instructions. These can be useful as a backup just in case the other device fails. A good process is one that is failproof!
- Get a map: In case the route planner does not work, or your mobile phone dies. If you’re going on a road trip, it’s useful to have the old school data map or a paper map! Plus, it’s fun! These can be purchased at almost any gas station, and are sometimes available for free (depending on the type). They will show major highways and will help with longer trips. The advantage of a paper map is the security features, as they ensure that you have complete privacy. (in this day and age of data tracking)
- Print out the map and the addresses: Another idea is to have each address of a route written on a spreadsheet (it will be a spreadsheet with many lines with all contact information in the columns like name, phone number, email addresses). Then you can print the map and the addresses from a computer. You will then have a paper copy in your car.
- Review the route ahead of time: We recommend that you pay attention and look ahead to where you will be driving, especially if this is your first time on this route. We suggest looking for any major landmarks, bridges, or major crossroads. You no longer need this for routes and territories you have traveled many times over.
- Get a co-pilot: The ideal is to have a friend or co-worker as a co-pilot or passenger to help. There are many stories in the news of incidents with vehicles that are not paying attention. Having someone there to help greatly reduces the factors leading to accidents.
- Use the Desktop version: For a route planner, often the web or desktop version is much easier to do the inputting (typing in) the addresses. So we suggest you use the “add stop” feature and to create your routes using the web-based route planner. The desktop version will suggest the best routes for you and give you distances on a map. As a user has written, “This is the best way to plan my route!”
- Avoid Tolls, Traffic, and Highways: For some routes, there are highways and tolls that you may want to avoid. For this, you can select it in special features, and select the box for highways, traffic, ferries, and tolls roads.
- Location Sharing: These apps have sharing features, which make it easy to collaborate with team members (in the case of a small business) or with friends (in the case of a road trip). These features create a shareable link that one can send in a text message, in an email, or on social media.
- Privacy and Data Security: Google uses a feature to track movements. This feature is called “location history.” For certain users, the privacy of data is critical. These users have a couple of choices. They can choose a competitor like MapQuest, or they can delete maps history. If you go into the place in the settings in Android or Chrome, you can disable the location history.
- Offline Maps: One of the features of Google Maps is the ability to create maps offline. This feature can be useful if you want to save data usage or if you are traveling to an area that doesn’t have internet or data access.
- Other Features: There are many other features that users are looking for in a route planner such as the search bar, preferences, menu items
You need to find an app that allows you to add multiple locations. Most apps like Waze, MapMe, and others have a limit of 2 stops. Google Maps allows up to 10, and MapQuest allows up to 26 stops. If you wish to have more than 26, then you’ll need to pay purchase a professional route planner.
The question which is “best” is always subjective. It always depends on your needs and preferences. A paid route planner will generally give better results. If you wish to use a free app, then your top two choices are Google Maps and MapQuest. MapQuest can go up to 26 stops, whereas Google Maps is limited to 10. Google Maps does have more features, map styles, and data sets.
We hope this helps to clarify the tips, ways, and steps to improve your driving directions. We hope you will be able to find the best route planner and map tool that is most appropriate for you. If you have other questions that you wish to ask us, as always, we are always here for you and your feedback.