3 Best Map Apps: Navigation

 

In this guide, I will show you 3 different map apps to make your trip easier and more enjoyable.

Each of them is the best in some aspects. I will explain the details so you can choose the one perfect for you.

First, you will appreciate the differences on the map –it’s easy to tell which is the most accurate.

Next, we will lock at the specifications of each navigation app.  

Compare Details on Different App Maps

 

I will show you three screenshots of the same localization to illustrate the different levels of detail in the 3 different map apps.

Citymapper is the only one of the three that shows you exactly where the entrances to the subways are. It saves you time walking around.

Google Maps tells you that there is a subway nearby but either doesn’t show where is the entrance or gives you the wrong location.

Maps.me has 80% of the entrances right. It misses one entrance and gives the wrong location for another.

Nevertheless, it has a level of detail in other aspects that can blow your mind, as I will show you later.

This was just an example, so let’s see each navigation app in detail.

 

citymapper

Citymapper. Catalunya Square, Barcelona.

Google maps catalunya square

Google Maps. Catalunya Square, Barcelona.

mapsme catalunya square

MapsMe. Catalunya Square, Barcelona.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Citymapper

citymapper best route

 

Available for Android and iPhone.

Citymapper has a limited number of cities. You have the list at the end.

If your city is not on the list go to the next map add.

Keep in mind that the list of cities is growing. I will try to keep it updated.

Main Menu

 

On the main menu, you can directly access any bus, train, or subway line.

For example, you can choose a bus line and see all the bus stops along the line. 

citymapper routeThe Best Route

 

You can also find the best route to go anywhere. You know how it works:

Mark where you are and then where you want to go, or the opposite.

Citymapper gives you some extra details that make it easier for you to find your way around the city easier.

A wheelchair-accessible section is also available for some locations. 

How Citymapper Works

citymapper route esp

 

This app works like a car GPS and warns you when you need to get off the bus/subway.

It has the highest level of detail when guiding you around.

For example, this navigation app tells you the best exit, as you can see on the screenshot.

In some locations, exits can be 200 meters away.

We already walk enough when we are traveling. No need for more!

Find Rental Scooters

 

citymapper rental bikesAnother advantage is that it shows you on the map rental bikes, scooters or cars on the map, which is a popular way to visit a city nowadays.

Here, you have a screenshot of all the rental scooters around in the area.

I miss the option to download the app service directly from Citymapper. 

You will need to download the app from a particular company and then rent the scooter. 

Available Cities

 

List in alphabetical order:

Barcelona, Berlin, Birmingham, Boston, Brussels, Chicago, Mexico City, Copenhagen, DC- Baltimore, Hamburg, Hong Kong, Istanbul, Koln, Lisbon, London, Los Angeles, Lyon, Madrid, Manchester, Melbourne, Milan, Monaco, Montreal, Moscow, New York, Paris, Philadelphia, Randstad, Rome, SF Bay Area, Seattle, Seoul, Singapore, Stockholm, Sydney, Sao Paulo, Tokyo, Toronto, Vancouver, Vienna, and Saint Petersburg.

Click for an updated list.

Maps.Me

Maps.me parc ciutadella

 

Available for Android and iPhone.

Advantages

 

This app automatically shows you points of interest and not as many advertisements as Google Maps.

When you bookmark a place or location it will show you Wikipedia’s description.

You will not need to carry a guide-book around.

Find The Best Route

 

The option to find the best route will be available offline.

maps.me detailsThis is the only app of the three with this feature.

It means that you can download the map and navigate using GPS.

You don’t need the internet.

Accuracy

 

The level of detail is amazing. It’s the best overall.

It even shows you the areas for each animal in the zoo, as you can see on the screenshot.

You don’t even need the zoo’s map.

Download Maps

 

To download maps you have 2 options.

maps.me londonmaps.me download mapsFirst Option: Find on the map the area that you want to download –London for example. 

Zoom in until a button to download the area appears.

Second Option: Access the menu on the lower-left, and search for the city you want to download.

Options

maps.me options

 

If you scroll down you will see different options, two of which are: 

Edit place: you can write notes about a place for personal use.

Add a place to the map: this option is for officially adding a place to the map. It will appear across the map.

When it’s placed where you want you can click “Done” on the right part of the screen.

A list of different options will be available. Moreover, you need to leave some specifications.

This “Add a Place” feature is a big advantage. Maps.Me is open-source meaning that anyone can add info to the map.

Meanwhile, Google works in a more traditional way with paid advertisements and local businesses.

Bookmark Lists With Colors

 

Among other things, you can create your own lists. For example, you can bookmark restaurants, hostels, or places to visit.

You can give each list with a particular color, such as red for restaurants, blue for Hostels, and so on.

This makes it easy to find the specific places you are looking for, as you know what kind of place it is just from the color.

It’s an easy way to find what you want at any moment.

Because of all these details, Maps.me is my favorite choice.

Google Maps 

Google Maps options

 

Available for Android and iPhone.

Probably the most popular map around the world.

It’s a reliable app for using public transportation and going to places on foot.

Nevertheless, it has some inconveniences.

Here, you have a list of countries where it is not allowed.

China, Crimea, Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, Syria, and Vietnam.

These countries believe that Google is not just a search engine, but also the biggest spying tool ever created.

You can use a VPN to avoid the restrictions. However, map accuracy in these countries is not good.

Download Maps

 

How can you use offline maps with Google Maps?

Google maps download mapOnce you have opened Google Maps, click the menu in the top-left.

You will see many options.

Click “Offline Maps” and then “Select your own map”.

An area of a map will be already selected, but you can make it bigger or smaller.

When you are happy with the area, click “Download” and you are done.

If you want to access your downloaded maps follow the same steps. You will have a list of all your maps.

Make sure you download your maps ahead of time for offline access, as you may not have internet access at your destination.

google maps best routeFind The Best Route

 

First, search for the place you want to go to.

Second, click “Directions” and “Choose starting point” from “your location” or “choosing on map”.

You will have one or more options to get there.

Choose your favorite, and the details will be available.

In this case, Google Maps says that the best option would be subway L2.

google maps routeHowever, you may prefer to take bus D50 and enjoy the view of the city meanwhile.

If you click on Cabify –a kind of Uber– it will take you to the app store.

You can download it and order a car to pick you up. It’s better than a taxi.

Note: the option to find the best route will NOT be available offline.

Conclusion

 

Citymapper is great if you visit a city from its list.

Maps.me is the best and the most accurate and gives you more options to get around. It’s my pick.

Google Maps, usually, finds the best route.

 

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