Your Phone Now Displays Detailed Maps of Airport Terminals—Here’s How

Finding your gate just got WAY easier.


Say goodbye to missed flights and mediocre meals, because your days of navigating enormous and confusing airport terminals are things of the past. And now that you won’t be frantically rushing around, you might want to brush up on how to make the most of your airport layover. Why? Thanks to an update on the Apple Maps app, you’ll soon have the airport’s entire layout at your fingertips.

The new map feature, a part of iOS 11, can display everything from a complete floor plan to a more detailed view of specific retail and gate areas. By selecting your airport terminal on the map, you can find locations of food courts, stores, restaurants, gate numbers, security checkpoints, and lounges. What’s more, tapping on a single restaurant or store will bring up more details about each individual location, including reviews. (Just be sure you don’t make these airport mistakes before your next flight.)

Apple Maps only offered maps of the Philadelphia and San Jose airports at first. However, it now includes Oakland, Miami, Minneapolis-St. Paul, Baltimore-Washington, Portland, Las Vegas, and two Chicago airports, O’Hare and Midway, as well.

Don’t see your hometown airport on the list? Never fear! Going forward, Apple plans to add even more airports to the mix, including LAX and New York’s JFK and LaGuardia airports. And although your only options are U.S. terminals, international airports such as Dubai, Hong Kong, Geneva, London Heathrow, Amsterdam, and Berlin could also be in the app’s future. No word yet on the best airport in the world, though.

If you’re not an Apple Maps user, you won’t be totally left out. Google Maps can also display the locations of restaurants and stores in your terminal. But you won’t see gate numbers and security checkpoints in its layout view like you would in Apple Maps (so you might want to consider re-downloading it!)

Unfortunately, the apps still can’t gauge how long the security line will be—yet. In the meantime, doing this one thing can cut your wait time in half.

[Source: Conde Nast Traveler]

Brooke Nelson
Brooke Nelson is a researcher at PBS FRONTLINE in Boston, Massachusetts, and writes regularly about travel, health, and culture news for Reader’s Digest. Previously she was a staff writer at Reader's Digest. Her articles have also appeared on MSN, Business Insider, and Yahoo Finance, among other sites. She earned a BA in international relations from Hendrix College. Follow her on Twitter @BrookeTNelson.