If you’re a Snapchat user, you may have noticed the Snapchat Map, also known as the Snap Map. However, you may not have used it yet, and be wondering what it is and how it works.
Fortunately, the Snap Map is fairly simple and straightforward to use. And in this article we show you how to use the Snapchat Map and make the most of this fun Snapchat feature.
What Is the Snapchat Map?
The Snapchat Map is a visual representation of users uploading content to the “Our Stories” section of Snapchat. Our Stories is one shared Story that everyone on Snapchat can use collectively. If the word “Story” is drawing a blank for you, you should read up on how to use Snapchat to get an idea on how Stories work.
Snapchat Map collates all of the Snaps posted within Our Stories. It then notes the location they were recorded and pins the Story onto a map. The result is a world map with Stories dotted around it. Users can click on these Story hubs to see videos and pictures taken in that area.
How to Open the Snapchat Map
If you want to see what your fellow Snapchat users are doing in your local area, you can view the Snapchat Map either via the app or the map’s webpage.
How to Open the Snap Map on the Snapchat App
First, make sure you’re in camera mode within Snapchat. You’ll know you’re in it if you’re currently looking at a feed from one of your phone’s cameras. If you’re not in camera mode, tap the circle at the bottom of the screen to activate it.
Once you’re in camera mode, swipe your finger down the screen. The Snapchat Map will slide down and ask you for your location details. This information is needed to use the Snapchat Map, so tap Allow if you don’t mind sharing your location.
Once accepted, you’ll see a world map with yourself pinned at your current location. You can press the GPS crosshair icon at the bottom right to zoom in on your local area.
How to Open the Snapchat Map in Your Browser
If you don’t have the app on-hand, you can load the Snapchat Map by visiting https://map.snapchat.com/ in a web browser. It will ask you for your location, but you can deny this permission and use the search on the left-hand side to find Stories in your local area without being tracked.
How to Use the Snapchat Map
When you open the Snapchat Map, you’ll notice that heatmaps will appear in specific locations. These heatmaps represent how many Snaps are in that area. The more intense the “heat,” the more Snaps there are. A specifically hot area may be the result of multiple people at a gathering, or one person posting a lot of content.
To view these Stories, tap or click on a heatmap. Snapchat will then automatically begin playing all the Stories posted within that location. You can see the next or previous Snaps by tapping or clicking on the right or left sides of the feed respectively.
Due to how the Snapchat Map handles Stories, you can refine how much content you see by zooming in or out. If you want to see all the Stories in your local area, zoom in close and tap the individual heatmaps dotted around. Likewise, if you’d like to see what an entire city is up to, zoom out to a citywide view and tap the single heatmap surrounding it.
How to Add Your Snaps to the Snapchat Map
If your local area is a little sparse in content, you can add your own to the map. To do this, either make a new Snap or tap an already-existing Snap in your album. Then, tap the arrow at the bottom right to send the snap.
A menu will ask where you want to send it. Here, select Our Story, then tap the arrow at the bottom right. Your Story and its location is now visible to the world.
How to Find Friends on the Snapchat Map in the App
If you have friends who are posting on Our Stories, you can see what they’re doing by tapping the magnifying glass at the top left, then selecting your friend in the list that appears. You can also tap on their location on the map to open up a chat.
How to Close the Snapchat Map on the App
Once you’re done looking at the Snapchat Map within the app, you can return to the main screen by either tapping the circle at the bottom of the map, or by pressing the back button on your phone. Either one will take you back to camera mode, where you can resume using the Snapchat app as usual.
How to Change Your Location Privacy Settings
If you’ve browsed the Snapchat Map and decided you don’t want the map to broadcast your location to your friends, you can change the permissions within the app. Tap on the cog in the top right to open the settings, which includes four privacy options for you to use.
These options are:
- Ghost Mode, which prevents anyone but yourself from seeing your location.
- My Friends, which allows all your friends on Snapchat to see where you are.
- My Friends, Except…, which allows you to pick specific friends not to see your location.
- Only These Friends…, which allows you to pick specific friends to see your location.
If you want Snapchat to stop reading your location altogether, you have to deny the location permission within your phone’s settings. If you don’t know how to do this, it’s a good idea to learn how to check important smartphone app permissions.
Getting the Most Out of Snapchat
The Snap Map is a fun way to connect with your local scene. And now that you know how to use the Snapchat Map you can view what’s going on in your block, or load a feed of everyone within your city or town, all with a single press. Likewise, you can add your own Stories to let everyone know what’s happening in your area.
If you want to become a Snapchat power user, why not work on your Snapchat score? If you’re confused by it, be sure to read up on how the Snapchat score works and how to get your points up.