6 Google Maps Alternatives and Why They Matter

Sandy Writtenhouse 05-06-2017

Not a fan of Google Maps? Maybe you need some tips to help you use it more effectively. Or maybe you would prefer a map application that offers different features, is more reliable, or helps you find low prices for local businesses. Perhaps you want to ditch Google entirely.


Whatever the reason, you do have other options. Did you know that you can even use Apple Maps in your browser?

Each of these six Google Maps alternatives brings useful features and helpful information. Get driving directions, view a certain location, or check traffic conditions quickly and easily.

1. MapQuest

MapQuest has been a reliable source for maps and driving directions for many years. It was founded by a division of R. R. Donnelly and Sons in 1967 and was eventually acquired by AOL. Today, MapQuest remains a prominent player in the map industry with its website and mobile apps.

For driving directions, you receive a few route choices with both the directions and the map for your trip. What makes MapQuest stand out with its directions feature is that you can find businesses along your route with a click. Choose from hotels, food, gas, shopping, groceries, and pharmacies where you can stop along the way.

mapquest directions web


If you do not necessarily need driving directions, but want to check out a specific city, that is just as easy. You receive suggestions as you enter the location into the search box. Then, click to find businesses, mark the location as a favorite, or share, save, or print the map.

mapquest places web

You can also check for traffic incidents, look at satellite views, and send a map to your mobile number. Plus, you can even book hotels, flights, rental cars, and vacations with the Priceline integration. For a solid, reliable alternative to Google Maps, MapQuest has some quality features.

Download — MapQuest for Android | iOS (Free)


2. Bing Maps

Bing Maps is another great map application with several handy options. Formerly known as, Microsoft acquired the company in 2002 and incorporated it into MSN Maps and Directions, and Microsoft MapPoint. Now known as Bing Maps, you can enjoy many useful features.

You can receive driving, transit, or walking directions in either miles or kilometers. Enable options to avoid highways and tolls, set up a certain time to begin your trip, and enter additional stops along the route.

As with MapQuest, you get the directions along with a map and can add businesses like hotels, attractions, and shopping along the way.

bing maps directions web


For information on a specific city rather than driving directions, you will receive suggestions as you enter the location into the search box. Along with the map, you will see images when available, facts about the location, and points of interest. Save your favorites, share via email or social media, or print the map.

bing maps places web

Bing Maps also provides traffic information with a legend and map modes for aerial, road, bird’s eye, or street side views. If you want to use Bing Maps on your mobile device, just download the Bing search engine and then tap the Maps option on the main screen.

Download — Bing for Android | iOS (Free)


3. Rand McNally

Who better to know maps than Rand McNally? Well-known for their printed maps and atlases, their first map dates back to an 1872 issue of the Railway Guide. Since then, the company has grasped the changing technology with navigation software s and GPS devices.

If you are visiting the Rand McNally site, you can select Maps & Directions from the top navigation. Then just pop in your starting and ending points to receive both the directions and map. You can add stops along the way, reverse the route, or view round-trip directions.

rand mcnally directions web

You can select the gear icon to edit your trip settings for the route type and items to avoid. Or you can enter a certain location into the search box instead of receiving directions if you like. Then, pick from road atlas or satellite view, zoom in or out, and print or email the map.

rand mcnally places web

The Rand McNally online maps and directions may not offer as many features as comparable sites. However, based on the company’s history, you can certainly trust the results.

4. (

While Here Technologies began 30 years ago, some may be unfamiliar with the company. Along with their automotive and traffic products, they offer positioning services and a mobile application. They are also involved in various industries including transportation, healthcare, and asset management.

To access the online map, visit the site and click from the top navigation. From there, you can get driving directions, traffic information, and business locations. For driving directions, you can choose from additional route types such as public transit, walking, or bicycling.

And, as with other map applications, you will see the directions in written form and plotted on the map. You can then click the In this area arrow on the left to see dining, gas, pharmacy, and hotel locations nearby. directions web

The Traffic option from the menu is very handy for planning your travel. You can view light, moderate, heavy, or stopped traffic areas in list form. Plus, you can see the details of the issue including exact location, current speed, and time delay.

If you choose the Places option from the menu, you check out attractions, tours, theme parks, and other local businesses. Once you select one, you will see the approximate driving time, can get directions, or click to see a QR code you can zap with your mobile device. places web

If you are interested in an online map service that offers a mobile app companion, then take a look at

Download — Here WeGo for Android | iOS (Free)

5. Waze

Waze is another good option if you want an online map plus mobile app service. The company was formed in the mid to late 2000s and the Waze application was eventually acquired by Google. So you may be wondering why it is falling onto a list of Google Maps alternatives.

The reason for this is that Waze is unique in its offerings. More than just maps, traffic, and GPS, Waze provides a community of users who report real-time road incidents along their route.

waze issue web

To use the online map service, head to the Waze website and click Live Map from the top. Once you enter your starting and ending locations, you will see your directions in list form and on the map. For large city travel, you click Check routes for a different time. Select your desired time from the drop-down menu and receive updated route options.

waze directions web

You may not get local business information or extensive features with Waze’s online map. But you will get from point A to point B with the best possible route options. The real draw to Waze is the mobile app which provides live maps, turn-by-turn navigation, community reported alerts, and fuel price assistance. This makes Waze a good Google Maps alternative Waze vs. Google Maps: Which App Will Navigate Home Faster Waze and Google Maps are both solid navigation apps, but which one is the best? Read More . Combine it with these public transit tracker apps to reach your destination on time every time.

Download — Waze for Android | iOS (Free)

6. OpenStreetMap With OsmAnd

OpenStreetMap (OSM) is an interesting online map source. Created in 2004 and inspired by the Wikipedia concept, it is a non-profit, collaborative project. With volunteers worldwide, the editable map collects data from ground surveys, GPS units, and cameras used by those contributors.

You can obtain directions quickly for driving, bicycling, and walking in both list and map views. Then, perform simple actions such as zooming in and out and enabling overlays for troubleshooting the map.

openstreetmap directions web

If you notice an error on a map or believe it is missing something, you can add notes. To do this, zoom into the exact spot on the map and click the Note icon from the right. Type your note in the box and be sure not to use personal information. Other users will then see your note and you can see those added by others as well.

openstreetmap note web

OpenStreetMap may not have the fancy features of other apps, but its concept and ease-of-use are its highlights. And if you want a mobile app that works with the data from the organization, OsmAnd is a good option OsmAnd: Offline Maps & Navigation With OpenStreetMap Data You don't need to buy a GPS or mobile data to get reliable navigation. Offline maps is the magical word. OsmAnd saves you money and helps you navigate to your destination safely. Read More . OsmAnd is available for free on Android and iOS with in-app purchases if you need specific map types such as nautical, Europe, or Central America. It is also among the best free offline GPS apps, alongside Google Maps.

Download — OsmAnd for Android | iOS (Free)

Do You Have a Favorite Google Maps Alternative?

When it comes to online map options it can be tough to find a great source if you do not like Google Maps or if you don’t want Google to track you. However, these options provide reliability and features that are certainly worth your time. Plus, if you become a true fan of one, you might just love it on your mobile device as well.

For more like this, check out our guide to using Android without Google How to Use Android Without Google: Everything You Need to Know Want to use Android without Google? No Google, no problem. Here's a guide to going Google-free on your Android device to regain privacy. Read More or Android apps that make awesome use of your location 7 Nifty Android Apps That Make Great Use of Your Location Your smartphone location is far more useful than just for Google Maps. These Android apps use your location in nifty ways. Read More .

Image Credit: WHYFRAME via

Related topics: Google Maps, Maps, Microsoft Bing, Travel, Waze.

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  1. jelabarre
    November 5, 2018 at 1:27 am

    All of these alternatives have the same failing as Google Maps. NO one seems to comprehend that, if you are using *printed* directions, they need to be readable when you are driving. That means printed in nothing less than 18-point type (better at 20 or 22point). It is quite obvious the people who design these sites don't drive, or have the delusion EVERYONE uses mobile data. None of them are capable of comprehending how things work in the real world.

  2. frans postmes
    August 11, 2018 at 9:59 am

    I use viamichelin a lot. It has a very usefull dsection to calculate highway tolls. The map is much better than google's.

  3. Paul Welch
    June 24, 2018 at 11:36 am

    I have used MapFactor Navigator for many years. The main point is maps are stored on my mobile which means I don't have to rely on a data connection.
    Has all the features I need.

  4. Jeffery Legere
    June 18, 2018 at 12:52 am

    I hate Microsoft most of the time, but their Bing maps, by far, creates the best printable maps. add waypoints at places where you want detailed mini maps to be shown.

  5. foe real
    March 13, 2018 at 3:39 am - best choice when it comes to details in Europe! zoom from 12 to 18 - amazing data!

  6. joeby52
    January 31, 2018 at 12:36 pm

    You imply american navigation and maps. Which of them will work in UK?

  7. Nirmal
    August 19, 2017 at 7:19 am

    I'm in the UK, where, as you all know, we are not even supposed to touch our mobile phones while driving. I rely on my iPhone and Google Maps for my work (have to go to different places every day). The only gripe I have with Google Maps is that it sometimes requires you to touch the phone while suggesting a new route etc..

  8. Ashton
    August 12, 2017 at 10:17 am

    Are we gonna get series of alternatives to google?
    They're scaring the crap out of me recently, reminds me of soviet practices (coming from post soviet union country).

  9. Hans Doove
    June 13, 2017 at 4:52 pm

    I use Maps.Me as an alternative for google maps.

  10. DSA
    June 13, 2017 at 2:53 pm

    +1 for Google Maps and Navigation on your phone. It is one of the few (if only) that will announce all street names! That is gold, imho! ("Turn left on walnut court", instead of "turn left in 200 feet"

  11. Sorin
    June 6, 2017 at 3:45 pm

    Sygic and iGO

    • Fred
      June 13, 2017 at 4:13 pm

      I like Sygic for its offline capability. Great for navigation where cell service is spotty.

  12. Richard Strauss
    June 6, 2017 at 12:44 pm

    Do any show weather enroute

  13. Aung MM
    June 6, 2017 at 10:20 am

    Pocket Earth is my favourite as its maps are compressed but all informations are still available even in offline mode such as Navigation, Lane No. House No. and use less battery.

  14. Frank John
    June 6, 2017 at 1:09 am

    Nothing beats Google Maps.

    • I.M. Pistoff
      June 30, 2018 at 9:06 pm

      I'll beat it - with a blunt object. A once-great product turned to shit.

      • Shayne
        August 16, 2018 at 1:24 pm

        So what is your favorite?

  15. michael
    June 5, 2017 at 10:04 pm

    So far I prefer Google. It is more up to date than any i have tried so far. I just did a check with open maps in my city and the City hall, Police station and main fire station locations are off from 7 to 10 years.