'Tis the season for getting lost, getting delayed and navigating through crowded public transit and bumper-to-bumper traffic, all in the name of festive celebration. Are you ready?
Google Maps just rolled out some new features in time for holiday travel, to hopefully make the most tempting time of the year to stay at home a little bit easier to get through.
A new timing feature can help you plan ahead to pick the best times for Thanksgiving travel and when to hit the road when traffic isn't at its peak. For example, if you're driving to Thanksgiving dinner, consider commuting before 1pm or after 4pm, when hungry drivers aren't out en masse. Other time predictions include the best schedules for Black Friday shopping (doorbuster deals not included), when to head to the airport, pick up a pie at the bakery, send packages at the post office and more.
Eager to head to the comfort of your own home? Google suggests a post-dinner departure over the weekend, likely after 7pm.
Additional upcoming features will help you dress and pack for the holidays. Soon, a tappable weather button in Google Maps will show the hourly forecast for the day in that area. A new AI feature called Nowcasting can also help predict if it's raining, snowing or hailing within the next hour.
Hosts can also welcome visitors to town with updates to lists in Google Maps. Now, friends and families can create joint lists of specific places, and interact by adding a heart to must visits or using a thumbs down to indicate disinterest.
You can't pick your family and you can't pick the weather, but you can make a few informed decisions over the holidays with the help of back-pocket tech.