You’re using Google Maps wrong! The ingenious trick saves time and data while using the app abroad

You’re using Google Maps wrong!  The ingenious trick saves time and data while using the app abroad


Even if “Location History” is turned off, Google often stores your exact location.

Here’s how to delete those markers and some best practices to keep your location as private as possible.

But there is no panacea, because simply connecting to the Internet on any device assigns an IP address that can be geo-mapped.

Smartphones also connect to cell towers, so your carrier always knows your general location.

Block tracking on any device

Start your browser and go to You must be signed in to Google.

In the top left drop-down menu, go to “Activity Controls”. Turn off “Internet and app activity” and “Location history” as well.

This may prevent accurate bookmarks from being stored in your Google Account.

Google warns you that some of its services may not work as well if these settings are turned off.

In particular, neither the Google Assistant, a digital concierge service, nor the Google Home smart speaker will be particularly useful.

on iOS

If you’re using Google Maps, set your location to “In Use”. This prevents the app from accessing your location when it’s not active.

Go to Settings Privacy Location Services and select Google Maps from there to set it up.

In the Safari web browser, consider using a search engine other than Google.

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Under Settings Safari search engine you can find other options such as Bing or DuckDuckGo.

You can turn off location tracking while browsing in Settings Privacy Location Services Safari Sites and set it to “Never”.

This still does not prevent advertisers from finding your approximate location based on any website’s IP address.

You can turn off Location Services almost completely on the device in the Settings Privacy Location Services menu item.

Google Maps and Apple Maps will still work, but they won’t know where you are on the map and won’t be able to give you directions.

Emergency services will still be able to find you if needed.

on Android

Under the main settings icon, click on “Security and location”. Scroll down to the “Privacy” heading. Tap on “Location”. You can turn it off on the whole device.

Use “Application-level permissions” to block access to different applications.

Unlike the iPhone, there is no “In Use” setting.

If you leave it on, you can’t turn off Google Play services that transmit your location to other apps.

Sign in as a “guest” on your Android device by swiping down from the top, tapping the down arrow, then tapping the trunk icon again.

Be careful which services you sign into, such as Chrome. You can even change search engines in Chrome.

Delete previous location tracking on any device

On, look for any post with a space pin icon next to the word “details”.

When you click it, a window pops up with a link that sometimes says “From your current location.”

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When you click it, Google Maps will open and show you where you’ve been.

You can delete it from this pop-up window by clicking the navigation icon with three stacked dots and then clicking the “Delete” button.

Some items will be grouped in unexpected places, such as topic names,, Search, or Maps.

They must be deleted in batches. You can wholesale delete all items by date range or service, but you end up taking more than just placeholders.

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