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How to Drop a Pin in Google Maps

We show you how to drop a Google Maps pin on the web or the mobile app and how you can use this for collecting locations, sharing, navigating and more.

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Renowned as one of the most helpful applications, Google Maps allows users to mark locations by “dropping a pin,” a patented inverted-drop-shaped icon that labels locations on the map. This feature is especially useful for saving addresses, marking locations without addresses, or correcting incorrect addresses. A dropped pin in Google Maps serves as a digital breadcrumb trail, guiding users through various locations and enhancing their overall mapping experience.

The functionality of dropped pins extends beyond just marking locations. They can be used for a variety of purposes, such as planning meet-ups, sharing exact coordinates with friends and family, and creating personalized maps. Whether you’re an Android, iOS, or a desktop user, knowing how to drop a pin on Google Maps opens up a world of possibilities. From sharing your favorite spots to navigating unfamiliar territories, the use of dropped pins transforms navigation into a personalized and efficient experience, making Google Maps an indispensable tool.

How to Drop a Pin on Google Maps Mobile

Marking a specific location on the Google Maps mobile app is ideal when you’re on the go and need to save or share a precise location.

  1. Find the Location and Drop the Pin
     
    Once you have found the desired location, press and hold on the area of the map where you want the pin to be dropped. A pin should appear at that location. After dropping the pin, a bar at the bottom of the screen will display details about the pinned location. You can tap on this bar to get more information, such as the address, coordinates, or nearby places.
     
    Android - Google Maps App - Drop Pin
  2. Navigate from or to the dropped pin
     
    Tap “Directions” to switch to Google Maps navigation mode.
     
    Android - Google Maps App - Drop Pin - Directions
  3. Review the suggested route
     
    Google Maps will use the pinned location as the destination per default. You can click the double arrow next to the destination field to flip the route around and use it as the starting point.
     
    Android - Google Maps App - Drop Pin - Directions

How to Drop a Pin on Google Maps Web / Desktop

This method shows how to pinpoint a location on Google Maps when using a desktop, useful for detailed planning on a larger screen.

  1. Find the Location and Drop the Pin
     
    Use the search bar to find a specific address or landmark. Alternatively, you can manually navigate around the map by clicking and dragging the map to your desired location.
     
    Left-click on the exact spot where you want to place the pin. A small grey pin icon will appear, and a box at the bottom or side of the screen will show details about the location.
     
    Click on the box that appears to see more details about the location, edit the details, or get directions from or to that point.
     
    Windows 11 - Google Maps - Drop Pin - Click On Info
  2. Clicking on the on the box with the pin location will show more options
     
    Windows 11 - Google Maps - Drop Pin - Click On Info - Result

How to Use a Dropped Pin for Directions on Google Maps Mobile

Navigating to or from a dropped pin using Google Maps on your mobile device is easy with the following simple steps.

  1. Drop a pin and tap “Directions” to start navigating
     
    Android - Google Maps App - Drop Pin - Directions
  2. Tap on “Choose starting point”
     
    Android - Google Maps App - Drop Pin - Directions - Choose Starting Point
  3. Select what to use as the starting point
     
    You can either type in an address or landmark, use “Your location” or tap “Choose on map” to drop a pin for the starting point as well.
     
    Android - Google Maps App - Drop Pin - Directions - Choose Starting Point - On Map
  4. Press and hold on the map if you drop a pin as starting point
     
    Android - Google Maps App - Drop Pin - Directions - Choose Starting Point - On Map - Accept
  5. Review the suggested route
     
    Google Maps will use the pinned location as the destination per default. You can click the double arrow next to the destination field to flip the route around and use it as the starting point.
     
    Android - Google Maps App - Drop Pin - Directions - Choose Starting Point - On Map - Result

How to Use a Dropped Pin for Directions on Google Maps Web / Desktop

Getting directions to or from a dropped pin on the desktop version of Google Maps works similar to the mobile app.

  1. Option 1: Drop a Pin and click on the navigation button
     
    Click on the map to drop a pin at your desired location. A grey pin icon will appear, and details about the location with the navigation button will show up.
     
    Windows 11 - Google Maps - Drop Pin - Directions
  2. Click on “Choose starting point”
     
    You can either type in an address or landmark or click on the map to drop a pin for the starting point as well.
     
    Windows 11 - Google Maps - Drop Pin - Directions - Starting Point
  3. Option 2: Right click the map to select a spot for navigating from or to
     
    Windows 11 - Google Maps - Drop Pin - Right-click
  4. Select “Directions from here” or “Directions to here”
     
    You can do this in two steps and use the right click to both select a starting point and a destination using pins on the map.
     
    Windows 11 - Google Maps - Drop Pin - Right-click - From or to
  5. Choose type of transport / navigation
     
    Windows 11 - Google Maps - Drop Pin - Directions - Starting Point - Trip Options

How to Save a Pin as a Location on Google Maps Mobile

This method allows you to save a dropped pin as a specific location on your mobile device for easy access later.

  1. Drop a Pin and click on “Save”
     
    Android - Goolgle Maps - Drop Pin - Save
  2. Choose or Create a List

    You can add the location to an existing list (like “Favorites” or “Want to go”) or create a new list to save this location.
     
    Android - Goolgle Maps - Drop Pin - Save - Select List

  3. Click “New list” if you want to create a different category
     
    Android - Goolgle Maps - Drop Pin - Save - New List
  4. Choose a list description and visibility
     

    Private: This setting keeps the list visible only to you. It’s a personal collection of locations that you might want to remember or visit, and no one else can view or access this list unless you choose to share it.

    Shared: A shared list can be viewed by others whom you specifically invite. You can send a link to friends or family, and they can see the list as well as contribute to it. This setting is ideal for collaborative planning, like organizing trips or outings with a group.

    Public: Public lists are visible to anyone. They can be found by other Google Maps users when they search for related places or topics. These lists are often used to share recommendations broadly, like favorite restaurants in a city, and can be a way to contribute to the wider Google Maps community.
     
    Android - Goolgle Maps - Drop Pin - Save - New List - Create

How to Send a Dropped Pin on Google Maps Web / Desktop to Your Phone

With this method you can send a pin dropped on the desktop version of Google Maps directly to your mobile device to continue there. It will show up as a notification which you just need to tap to continue where you left off on the PC.

  1. Drop a Pin and click on the Pin’s Details
     
    Windows 11 - Google Maps - Drop Pin - Location
  2. Click “Send to phone”
     
    Windows 11 - Google Maps - Drop Pin - Location - Send to Phone
  3. Choose the Phone and Sending Method
     
    You can choose to send the location via text, email, or directly to the Google Maps app if you’re signed in with the same Google account on both devices.
     
    Windows 11 - Google Maps - Drop Pin - Location - Send to Phone
  4. If you clicked your phone it will receive a notification from Google Maps
     
    Android - See Notifications
  5. Tap the notification to show the pin location
     
    Android - See Notifications - Location
  6. The location will open using the exact address or coordinates
     
    Android - See Notifications - Location - Result

How to Share a Dropped Pin / Location on Google Maps Mobile

This method shows how to share a dropped pin for a specific location from your mobile device with others which is an easier way than telling them an address or landmark.

  1. Drop a Pin and Tap to Access the Pin’s Details
     
    Android - Google Maps App - Drop Pin - Location
  2. Tap on “Share Place”
     
    Android - Google Maps App - Drop Pin - Location - Share Place
  3. Select the app or contact you want to share the pinned location with
     
    Android - Google Maps App - Drop Pin - Location - Share Place

How to Share a Dropped Pin / Location on Google Maps Web / Desktop

You can also share a dropped pin for a specific location from your PC which is better than just copying and pasting the very long URL from your browser address bar.

  1. Drop the Pin and open the location details
     
    Click on the box that appears to see more details about the location, edit the details, or get directions from or to that point.
     
    Windows 11 - Google Maps - Drop Pin - Click On Info
  2. Click “Share”
     
    Windows 11 - Google Maps - Drop Pin - Directions Icon - Share
  3. Click “Copy Link” to save a Google Maps short URL to your clipboard
     
    You can then paste this short URL for the Google Maps pin location in other apps and services with the hotkey “CTRL + V” or the right-click context menu.
     
    Windows 11 - Google Maps - Drop Pin - Directions Icon - Share - Copy Link
  4. Alternatively you can click and share to Apps below
     
    Windows 11 - Google Maps - Drop Pin - Directions Icon - Share - Apps

How to add a Label to a dropped Pin on Google Maps Mobile

This method shows how to add custom labels to your dropped pins on the mobile app for better organization.

  1. Drop a pin and tap on “Dropped pin” below
     
    Android - Google Maps App - Drop Pin - Location
  2. Tap on “Label”
     
    Android - Google Maps App - Drop Pin - Location - Label
  3. Enter a label for the location
     
    Google Maps shows existing labels and the suggestions “Home”, “Work”, and “School” below for easy access.
     
    Android - Google Maps App - Drop Pin - Location - Label - Enter
  4. Confirm the label to save it
     
    Android - Google Maps App - Drop Pin - Location - Label - Enter Add
  5. The location details for this dropped pin will then show “Labeled”
     
    You can tap on “Labeled” and remove the label in a similar way.
     
    Android - Google Maps App - Drop Pin - Location - Label - Enter Add - Result

How to add a Label to a dropped Pin on Google Maps Web / Desktop 

This method demonstrates adding labels to dropped pins on the desktop version of Google Maps for easy identification.

  1. Right click on the map to drop a pin and show options
     
    Windows 11 - Google Maps - Drop Pin - Right-click
  2. Select “Add a missing place”
     
    Windows 11 - Google Maps - Drop Pin - Right-click - Add a Missing Place
  3. Add a “Place name” and select or add the label below
     
    Windows 11 - Google Maps - Drop Pin - Right-click - Add a Missing Place - Add Details - Submit

FAQ – Frequently Asked Questions About Dropping Pins in Google Maps

Can I add notes or additional information to a dropped pin?

While Google Maps doesn’t provide a direct feature called “notes” for dropped pins, you can use the labeling feature to add custom text to a pin, which can serve as additional information or a note. After dropping a pin, tap on it, select “Label”, and enter your text. This label will be visible to you whenever you view the pin, and it can include details like the purpose of the visit, important reminders, or any other context you find useful.

How do I view the latitude and longitude of a dropped pin?

After dropping a pin on Google Maps, the latitude and longitude are displayed in the details section at the bottom of the screen. You can tap on the pin to bring up this section. If you need to copy these coordinates, simply tap on them, and most devices will offer the option to copy the text to your clipboard, allowing you to paste the coordinates elsewhere.

Is it possible to change the icon of a dropped pin for easier identification?

Google Maps primarily uses a standard icon for dropped pins and does not allow users to change this icon for individual pins directly within the app. However, for a more personalized mapping experience, you can use Google My Maps, a separate tool by Google, to create custom maps with a variety of icons to choose from for each location you mark.

Can I share a list of dropped pins with others?

Yes, you can share a list of dropped pins by first saving those pins to a list. To share the list, go to “Your Places”, select the list you want to share, and then choose the “Share” option. You can set the list to “Shared” and send the generated link to others, allowing them to view the list. Recipients can also be given the ability to edit the list if you change the sharing settings to allow it.

How can I find a previously dropped pin that wasn’t saved?

If a dropped pin wasn’t saved, it might not be easy to locate it again later, especially if you’ve continued to use Google Maps for other searches or directions. To prevent this, make a habit of saving important pins immediately by tapping on the pin and selecting “Save”, then adding it to a list or labeling it. For recently searched locations or directions, you can check your Google Maps history, which might help you trace your steps back to the unsaved pin.

Can dropped pins be used to calculate area or perimeter?

Google Maps doesn’t directly calculate the area or perimeter around a dropped pin. However, you can use the “Measure Distance” feature to measure straight lines between points. For measuring an area, you can place multiple pins to mark the corners of the area and then use an external tool or application that calculates area based on latitude and longitude points to get an estimate.

How do I sync dropped pins across different devices?

To sync dropped pins across devices, ensure you’re signed into the same Google account on each device. Any pins you’ve saved to your lists or labeled will automatically appear in Google Maps on any device where you’re signed in with that account. This synchronization includes any custom lists you’ve created, labeled locations, and your saved places.

Is there a way to set reminders or alerts for a dropped pin location?

Google Maps itself does not offer a feature to set reminders or alerts based on dropped pin locations. However, you can use third-party reminder or task apps that support location-based reminders. Simply enter the location details of your dropped pin into these apps, and set them to notify you when you’re near the location or at a specific time before your planned visit.

How do I report an issue with a dropped pin’s location accuracy?

If you encounter an issue with the accuracy of a dropped pin’s location, you can report it to Google for correction. Tap on the pin to bring up its details, then look for the “Suggest an edit” option. Here, you can report inaccuracies like the wrong location name, incorrect positioning, or other issues. Google reviews these reports and may update the map to improve accuracy based on user feedback.

Can I create a route that includes multiple dropped pins?

While Google Maps allows you to get directions from one point to another, creating a multi-stop route directly within the app is somewhat limited. You can add stops to your route by selecting “Directions” from one pin, then tapping the three dots in the top right to “Add stop”. For more complex routing with multiple dropped pins, consider using Google My Maps or third-party routing tools that allow for more extensive customization.

How can I see the history of all the pins I’ve dropped?

Google Maps does not maintain a visible history of every pin you’ve dropped unless you’ve explicitly saved them. To view the pins you’ve saved, go to “Your Places” in the Google Maps menu. Here, you can see lists of saved places, labeled locations, and your custom maps. If you frequently drop pins without saving them, consider adopting a practice of saving pins that you may want to revisit.

Can I export dropped pins to another map service or GPS device?

Directly exporting dropped pins from Google Maps to another service or device isn’t a built-in feature. However, you can share individual pin locations and manually input them into other services or GPS devices by using the shared link or noting down the coordinates. For a more seamless experience, consider using Google My Maps, where you can create custom maps and then export them in KML format, which is compatible with many mapping services and GPS devices.

Is it possible to drop a pin based on latitude and longitude coordinates?

Yes, you can drop a pin at a specific location by entering its latitude and longitude coordinates into the Google Maps search bar. Format the entry as “latitude, longitude” (for example, “40.712776, -74.005974”) and press enter. Google Maps will then center the map on these coordinates, where you can drop a pin for further reference or navigation.

How do I customize the name of a list where I’ve saved dropped pins?

To customize the name of a list in Google Maps, navigate to “Your Places” and go to the “Saved” tab. Find the list you want to rename, tap on it, then select the three dots for more options and choose “Edit list”. Here, you can change the name of the list as well as its description and visibility settings. This allows for better organization of your saved pins according to categories, interests, or trips.

Can I add a dropped pin to Google My Maps for more complex map-making?

While you can’t directly transfer a dropped pin from Google Maps to Google My Maps, you can recreate the pin in My Maps. Open Google My Maps, create a new map or edit an existing one, and use the “Add marker” tool to place a pin at the same location. You can then customize this pin further within My Maps, including changing its icon, adding detailed descriptions, and including it in layers for complex map-making projects.

Extra: How to Plan a Route with More than 10 Destinations in Google Maps

Google Maps is a fantastic tool for online navigation and geographical awareness, but it can start to break down once you try to plan a route with more than 10 destinations without using a workaround. In our other guide, we show you how to add more than 10 destinations in Google Maps using Notepad and a handy URL bar trick.
 

Extra: How to Measure Distances on Google Maps

Google Maps can measure distance in an area or as the crow flies to help you with various decisions and sate your curiosity. One good use of the tool is measure distance walked along footpaths, for example, or to determine the size of a property. In our other guide, we show you how to measure distances in Google Maps for Android and the web, either in an area, along a route, or as the crow flies.
 
Google Maps Determine linear distance between two points

Markus Kasanmascheff
Markus Kasanmascheff
Markus is the founder of WinBuzzer and has been playing with Windows and technology for more than 25 years. He is holding a Master´s degree in International Economics and previously worked as Lead Windows Expert for Softonic.com.