The app will alert you to new restrictions and requirements.
For better or worse, the US is reopening its roads and businesses after nearly three months in pandemic quarantine. Unfortunately, despite the best efforts of medical researchers around the world, we don’t have a vaccine for COVID-19 yet, which means reopening, even in a partial capacity, isn’t entirely safe. Still, safe or not, that ol’ summer wanderlust is starting to set in, and people really, really want to get out of the house. If you absolutely have to travel, then you might want to have Google Maps open to stay up to date.
Google Maps has been compiling data on local responses to the pandemic since it got going, and with the aid of that information, the Google Maps app can now provide accurate, up-to-date information on any new restrictions and requirements. This includes things like testing requirements at state and country borders, whether or not public transit is running, and if it is, if it’s at a reduced capacity.
Speaking of public transit, the app will also now inform you if public transit schedules and capacities have been altered when you first enter an address and travel method. Google Maps has had the capacity to tell you how busy a particular transit line is for years now, but that feature has been slightly modified to let you know when social distancing is or isn’t feasible.
If you put a hospital or medical center in as a destination, the app will ask if you’re planning to get a COVID-19 test. If you are, the app will tell you about eligibility requirements, whether or not you need an appointment, and whether the facility is even administering tests. These new alerts will be available in multiple countries, including the US, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, the UK, and more.
No matter what the country’s attitude is right now, the safest thing you can do is have a stay-at-home vacation. If you need to travel, be it for work or pleasure, then make sure to arm yourself with knowledge.