Google Maps now lets you see how difficult it will be to find parking

Sick of circling crowded parking lots, stalking every person who walks by in the hopes they're walking to their car so you can swoop into their space?

Google Maps feels your pain and is today rolling out a feature for the app on Android designed to ease it, if only a bit.

Just as it was first spotted over a week ago, Google Maps has introduced a parking difficulty reading for 25 metropolitan areas in the US. An icon will indicate whether parking is limited, medium or easy where you're headed, helping you factor in finding a spot into your planning. 

Spotting the icon is easy once you're viewing the directions to your destination. Just direct your gaze to the bottom of the screen and look for a little letter in a colored circle. 

Google says areas like San Francisco, Chicago, Detroit, Los Angeles, New York City, San Diego and Washington D.C. have the icon "for now", suggesting it could be headed elsewhere before long. 

We can speak from personal experience finding a parking space in San Francisco is a literal nightmare, so if this helps us factor extra time into our trip (or know when the perfect moment to leave in order to snag a spot might be), we're all for it.

Michelle Fitzsimmons

Michelle was previously a news editor at TechRadar, leading consumer tech news and reviews. Michelle is now a Content Strategist at Facebook.  A versatile, highly effective content writer and skilled editor with a keen eye for detail, Michelle is a collaborative problem solver and covered everything from smartwatches and microprocessors to VR and self-driving cars.