How to exclude vehicles from your public transport route in Maps


Apple Maps is still expanding its public transport information worldwide but with more and more locations being added incrementally, there is a growing chance you by now live in the backyard of a city that Maps does relay public transport data to.

Apple has touted the service for its clean integration into Maps and comprehensive breakdown of the local train, tram or ferry schedules, which for most users has very much lived up to the expectations set. It also allows for swift routing on your iPhone at the hands of said public transport means. But did you know you could narrow down the public transport options in order to avoid certain vehicles when en route?

Here comes a small knack that can help you get ahead in many scenarios, such as circumventing rush hour traffic on the streets through the omission of bus lines by way of example. Excluding specific lines from your route is an expedient way to avoid any form of known gridlock before entrusting Apple with captaining you to your travel destination. As every so often, the feature is somewhat tucked away in Maps, so here is how you do it best:

In the example below I am situated in the Big Apple, NYC and aim to get to Brooklyn. Since traffic can be a pain in the backside however and some train lines are suffering major delays, I am planning to choose the water way – with the help of Apple’s lesser-known routing settings.

Think of the places and public transport lines as mere placeholders for your own environment: means of transport and their lines are entirely adjustable to your situation and only serve as a hands-on example for your orientation.

1) Open Maps and locate your travel destination either by typing in the address or holding your finger down on a location displayed in Maps. I’m off to the Brooklyn Bridge Walkway.

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2) Once the location is locked in, hit the blue rectangular reading Directions to ask Apple Maps for the routing options.

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3) Tap the Public Transport icon in the bottom bar and Maps is going to suggest one or multiple routes. These are – to the best of Maps’ knowledge – the fastest public transport options available at this instant. The first recommendation in the scenario below is to walk to a train station in the neighborhood and take the C Line Downtown towards Brooklyn.

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4) Convinced that I know better and the estimated travel time projected by Apple does not live up to the actual time required, I expand the Public Transport card by swiping up the grey handle in the centre of the panel to reveal additional suggestions and a blue link at the bottom of the list called Transport Options.

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5) Clicking Transport Options gets me exactly where I wanted to be. I can now determine precisely which vehicles I do and which I don’t want to board on my journey. In my case example, I want to omit all vehicles coasting through the city and instead cruise down the river.

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6) In order to obtain routing information for the ferry request, I unselect bus, subway & light rail and commuter rail and hit Done.

7) Apple Maps will take the new information into account and re-route. If the updated version is still to your liking (or better than the previous suggestion), just click Go and you are ready to scoot!

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Keep in mind that in some cities, Maps will factor in public transport delays and do a solid job at suggesting the fastest route all things considered. With that said, if you’re  experiencing a case of you just knowing better than the service, or you simply feel adverse to hopping on a train for example, this is a nifty little setting to feed Maps with your trip preferences.