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In most cases, to find out a distance or expected travel time between two points, I use Google Maps (using Chrome, desktop PC). To do so, the typical steps are:

  • Type a location (say 'Munich') into the URL-bar in Chrome (which triggers the Google search)
  • On the result page, click on "Maps". This opens the map showing Munich
  • Click on "route planner". Munich becomes the destination.
  • Type the second location, say "Paris"
  • If you need to navigate from Munich to Paris, switch the two locations

Five steps for one route - I wonder if there is a shorter way to achieve the same result:

Is there a syntax to make Google show the route planner right from the search query?

My idea is something like Munich -> Paris (which is, obviously, not a solution).

3

If you're already at Google Maps, typing {starting point} to {destination} is all you need to do. So, for example:

munich, germany to paris, france

If you're trying to do it from the generic Google Search (perhaps from the Chrome Omnibar) the same syntax does it:

munich, germany to paris, france

It'll often give you a number of different options (like ads to buy rail tickets) but should also give you a small map from Google Maps with the distance, time, and basic route.

Personally, since I know I'm looking for directions, I'll just head to Maps first. Then I get exactly what I want without extra clutter.

The key seems to be the to between the two places. from to destination.

For what it's worth, that syntax also works at Bing.

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