Black Friday is coming up. But as much as we love a good deal, our aversion to long lines and manic crowds often prevents us from heading out and taking advantage of the day. Well, maybe this year will be different. Google just released a new feature on Google Maps that will let you know how crowded spots are at that very moment — meaning there might be a slow hour we can sneak into a shop and scoop up great deals without having to fight the crowds.
If you’re unfamiliar, Google Maps has always had a “popular times” feature that shows at what times restaurants, bars and shops are usually most busy. But the new feature will use live data from Google customers to tell you if the location you’re interested in is unusually busy or quiet for that time of day. It uses the same technology that Google Maps has out on the road to predict traffic.
Speaking of traffic, Google has also analyzed data to help you travel with as little crowding as possible. At the five busiest airports around the country, Google recommends getting there before 3pm to avoid long waits at security. For those driving back for the holidays, you already missed the best day for traffic (it was Sunday). Wednesday p.m. is going to be the absolute worst time on the roads. But when you’re driving back, it’s best to hit the roads Friday a.m. If you wait until Saturday p.m., there will be a considerable amount of traffic.
Thanks, Google, for giving us the true spirit of the holiday season: Getting in and out as quickly as possible.
Are you heading out on Black Friday? Let us know @BritandCo!
(h/t The Guardian; photo via Getty)