Google API Keys

In July of 2018, Google dramatically reduced the number of Google Maps "transactions" you're allowed to make per month. Unfortunately, this means that the general public can no longer access some of Google's services using GPS Visualizer's credentials.

However, you have two options to keep taking advantage of GPS Visualizer's Google-based utilities:

Option 1: Get your own API Key

You can create your own Google Maps Platform API key:

  • Go to https://cloud.google.com/maps-platform/. Sign in if you are not already logged into a Google account.
  • Click "Get Started." When you are prompted to select a product, select "Routes" (and, optionally, "Maps").
  • Enter a "Project" name and agree to Google's Terms & Conditions.
  • Go to https://console.developers.google.com/apis/credentials. At the top of the screen, select your project.
  • Click "Create Credentials" and select "API Key." If you are only going to use the key to make maps or GPX files with GPS Visualizer, it can be an "unrestricted key."
  • In the sidebar, click "APIs" and follow the instructions to enable the "Directions API."

Note: once you've entered your key into a GPS Visualizer input form, it will be saved in a "cookie," so you won't have to enter it again unless you switch to a different browser.

About "billing"

If you want to keep using your API key beyond the limited free trial, you may need to "enable billing" by entering a credit card and verifying that you're a real person, but individual users will almost NEVER exceed the free quota, so you won't actually be billed.

Option 2: Use "My Maps"

You can create a driving/walking/biking route in Google's My Maps feature, and GPS Visualizer will still be able to read it, as long as "sharing" has been enabled.

  • Go to https://www.google.com/maps/d/. Sign in if you are not already logged into a Google account.
  • Click on "Create a new map."
  • In the map-drawing interface's toolbar, click on the "add directions" button ().
  • Enter your beginning and ending points. You can also add additional destinations, or drag the route to a different road, just like in the normal Google Maps interface.
  • Click "Share" in the sidebar (). Name your map.
  • Under "Who has access," click "Change..." and then select "On - anyone with the link."