Google Maps will soon let users pay for parking and transit.
The search giant published a blog post outlining the new features. Paying for parking will roll out starting February 17th to the Android app. It’s available in over 400 U.S. cities, including Boston, Cincinnati, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, and Washington D.C. Google says the feature will soon come to iOS users.
Paying for transit will roll out to Android users and work with 80 agencies globally in the coming weeks. Unfortunately, Google didn’t share which transit agencies would support the program.
To do so, tap the ‘Pay for parking’ button, which should appear as you get close to your destination. From there, users can enter their meter number, the time they want to park for, and tap ‘Pay.’ Plus, Google says users can easily add time to their meter from Maps.
Paying transit fares in Maps works similarly. Users can plan their transit trip, buy their fare and start riding all from Maps. Google says the feature supports paying ahead of the trip if the transit agency supports the feature but can also warn users if they need to have payment ready when they arrive at the station.
When users get transit directions in Maps, the app will surface an option to pay with the credit or debit cards linked in the users’ Google Pay account. Additionally, Google notes that agencies that use cards — the company mentions San Francisco’s Clipper card specifically, but hopefully the same would apply in, say, Toronto with the Presto card, assuming the service is available here.
Depending on the transit agency, Google notes that users simply have to show the digital ticket on their device or tap their phone on the ticket reader to board.
Both features sound relatively helpful, especially during a pandemic where reducing contact with public surfaces can help prevent spreading COVID-19. Paying for parking or transit fares on your phone is much more convenient as well. Hopefully, both features become available in Canada soon.