How I master Google Maps with this Alfred workflow

December 22nd 2017

How I master Google Maps with this Alfred workflow

Using Google Maps is part of my daily routine. I'm either looking for some directions, by car, by foot or by bicycle. I'm also watching traffic conditions in certain areas. Or I'm simply searching for a specific store and its opening hours. Maps is much more than maps. And with this workflow you'll put the service to the next level.

In 2011, when I first started using Alfred, I felt proud of myself after creating a custom search engine for Google Maps. I could simply invoke Alfred and type map name-of-the-place and I would automatically generate a query on Google Maps. Little did I know something much more powerful was going to show up.

Stuart C. Ryan has developed a workflow named Advanced Google Maps Search which does so much more. And it is mainly because he added some options for you to set up your home and your work address.

Configure the workflow

To use the full potential of this workflow, you will then have a couple of steps to make at the very beginning.

Invoke Alfred and type mapsethome and then enter your home address. Be as precise as possible. This is basically what you would enter in Google Maps.

Then invoke Alfred a second time and type mapsetwork and then enter your work address. Again be as precise as possible, with street number and postcode.

After those two little steps, you're up and running !

Advance Google Maps Search options

Basic commands

Sure, we do have basic commands, like the one I did 6 years ago. So after starting Alfred you can type maps your-query to search Google Maps for an address. You can also type dir Point-A to Point-B to create a simple itinary. Quite neat!

And for something more complex, well, it's actually quite easy. Say you plan to stop somewhere on your journney to have lunch or for a hotel night, you would simply type dir Point-A to Point-B to Point-C.

Personal commands

Yet, the real power of this workflow lies in personal commands that will take your home and work address into account. Here is the full list below:

  • dirfw your-query Show directions from Work to address
  • dirfh your-query Show directions from Home to address
  • dirtw your-query Show directions from query to Work address
  • dirth your-query Show directions from query to Home address
  • trafficw your-query - Show traffic from Home to Work
  • traffich your query - Show traffic from Work to Home

Download Alfred

Download the Advanced Google Maps Search workflow

I tried to write about the Alfred app itself, but there is so much to say I don't even know where to start. There is no word to describe my love for Alfred. Also whoever has ever written about Alfred simply never has done it justice. If you want more information, I encourage you to have a look at this page. Note that the use of workflows requires a premium licence but it's the smartest thing you can ever buy for your Mac.