Google’s travel app Trips is shutting down on August 5th, ceding its territory to apps such as TripIt and RoadTrippers. It’s unfortunate; Trips was a handy app for travelers, offering a quick and easy way to track your travel plans, find your saved places, and explore unfamiliar territory. You could also download your information to the app so that it would be accessible offline, very handy when you are overseas and using a temporary data plan.
Google has created a page describing all the various methods you can use to replace the features of the soon-to-be-gone Trips app. What follows are some of Google’s suggestions, with a bit of extra commentary to help you get at least some of the same functionality:
- You can use Google Maps to find restaurants, entertainment, parks, etc. in the area of your destination. This is a simple process, well-known to most Maps users: simply enter the category into your search field. But while it’s a useful feature, it can often be awkward, especially on a phone, as you zoom in and out of the map while trying to compare each possible destination and figure out their relative distances from where you are.
- If you have the foresight to do your Map-based research before you leave for your destination (preferably on a laptop, where you can get a better overall view), a good idea is to save those possible restaurants, museums, and other destinations so you can find them later. To do this on your laptop, click on the place and then select “Save” on the left-side menu. On your mobile device, when you tap on the place’s location, you’ll bring up its separate Maps page; you can then select “Save.” In either case, you can either star the destination, making it easier to find on the map, or save it to a list.
- A recent addition to the mobile Maps app is the ability to find your trip reservations. Tap on the three-line menu icon, select “Your places” and then tap on “Upcoming” in the top line (you may have to scroll to the left to find it). Google will have pulled info from your Gmail and Calendar apps to create a list of your upcoming events. Once you have the list, you can tap on the three dots on the right side of each entry to go to the source of the info.
- You can also do a general Google search for “My Trips.” On a mobile device, a listing of your personal trip info will appear at the top of your search (along with the assurance that you’re the only one who can see it). Select it, and you’ll get a page tracking your flights, any research you may have done for your impending trip, and local info about your destination.
- Last but not least: at the bottom of that My Trips page, you’ll find a large link to the mobile version of Google’s new Trips page. Trips is a brand-new Google site (which just happens to have the same name as the mobile app) that collects and gives you access to all the info about your saved and / or upcoming trips by using your Google history of calendar entries, along with emailed hotel and plane reservations.
While the mobile version of the Trips site doesn’t have all of the advantages of the soon-to-be-sunsetted Trips app (for example, you can’t use the site offline), it may be your best bet as far as a Google traveling service is concerned, especially once the app goes away this coming August.
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