Setting up a route in Google Maps, especially for long trips, is incredibly useful but many users may not know that it lets you find and add gas stops and other waypoints can be added after travel starts. More directly, whether your trip is long or short, the tool lets users easily add locations along the way. Whether that’s to refuel, pick up trip supplies or snacks, lodging, or stop in at a restaurant. Or, for that matter, any other location that might be of interest.
Well, that’s exactly what this how-to guide is for. So whether you haven’t yet explored the feature or wondered whether such a feature exists, to begin with, this walkthrough can help you out.
Here’s how you can add a gas stop to your Google Maps route
As with many of our how-to guides, you may want to start by first updating Google Maps. That will help ensure consistency between our guide and your experience. Although there may still be some differences between the app as it appears on your device and in our guide. Our example images show Google Maps with the Dark Mode theme turned on, for instance. Conversely, this guide is meant to work using the mobile app. So you’ll want to ensure that’s where you’re following along.
You can update your app by visiting the Play Store, tapping your profile image, selecting the “Manage apps & device” option, and then selecting the “Update” option. Then, follow the prompts to install and check for updates.
Once updated, the steps to find and add a gas stop or other location in Google Maps are relatively straightforward, whether you’re already on your route or just getting started.
- If you haven’t already started traveling along a selected route, Open up Google Maps on your Android device
- Select the search bar at the top of the page, labeled “Search here”
- Enter in a location to visit or travel to. As shown in our sample images below, we’ve selected the American Museum of Natural History in New York as our destination
- If the starting location isn’t chosen automatically, enter a new one. Or, conversely, you may choose to select one from the list or start from your current location. Also, in this step, select your method of travel using the icon bar just below the entry fields, if the proper one isn’t already selected
- Google Maps will show you an overview of your route. Near the bottom of the page, select the “Start” button to begin travel. Google Maps will take you back to the primary travel page
- If you’ve started travel or once you’ve arrived back at the primary travel page, swipe up from the bottom. More specifically, swipe up from the card at the bottom of the UI, showcasing how much travel time is left
- Maps will present you with several options on the card, select the third option from the top. Labeled “Search along route”
- Select the “Gas station” button. Google labeled the button as adding a gas pump-shaped icon, making it easier to spot near the top left-hand side of the UI
- Google Maps will once again return to the overview screen, showing the current segment of your route. It will also find and overlay gas stations that are near or directly along your Google Maps route. Select a gas station to add to your route
- Maps will then begin to automatically add the stop to your route. Or, conversely, you may choose to select the add stop button to manually add it. If you’d like to select a different station, for instance, if the one you’ve selected is too busy, select cancel and repeat step 9
- Now, Google Maps will lead you to the newly added stop before continuing along the route to your destination
This also works for other retail-based stops, hotels, and more
In addition to Gas stations, Google Maps can also help you find and add other stops to your route. Namely, it can search for Restaurants, Coffee shops, Grocery Stores, Rest stops, and Hotels. Each of those has a preset icon-laden button to choose from. Placed right alongside the Gas stations button. So, the steps for adding those are nearly identical to those for adding a gas station stop. You’ll simply choose one of those options in step 8 above.
Of course, those also aren’t the only locations that can be added along a route either. So let’s dive into how you might add a different stop.
- Follow steps 1 through 6 as needed, using the above guide
- Select the “Search along route” text entry field
- Perform a search for the location you’d like to stop along the route. We’ve chosen “National Monuments” for our search, which will show nationally-recognized locations within a set distance of our current location on the route. You can also zoom out on the map and tap the refresh button over different areas to find your search results further away along your route. Or, of course, if you know of an exact address to be added to your route, it can also be added here by entering it in the search and then following the prompts to add it
- Once the map loads up prospective search results, tap the result you’d like to add to your trip
- Google Maps will automatically add the location. It will also enact appropriate changes to the travel route for efficiency