How do I turn on voice directions in MapQuest?

MapQuest is an online mapping service that provides driving directions and maps. It was one of the first and most popular online mapping services when it launched in 1996. At its peak popularity in the early 2000s, MapQuest had over 40 million active monthly users.

One of the key features MapQuest offers is voice-guided directions. This allows users to hear turn-by-turn navigation prompts and instructions when using the MapQuest app or website. The voice guidance speaks street names, direction changes, and other notifications to guide you to your destination.

Using voice directions can make navigating easier and safer. Drivers don’t have to take their eyes off the road as often to view visual map directions. The audio cues allow drivers to focus on driving while still receiving navigation guidance. Voice directions are especially helpful in unfamiliar areas or when driving at night.

Enable Voice Directions

To access the settings for voice directions in MapQuest, open the MapQuest app on your iPhone or Android and tap the menu icon in the top left corner. Then select “Settings”.

In the Settings menu, scroll down and find the “Voice Directions” option. Tap on this to open the voice directions settings.

Here you will see a toggle switch for “Voice Directions”. Make sure this toggle is switched to the on position to enable voice directions.

Once voice directions are enabled, MapQuest will provide turn-by-turn voice guidance during navigation. You can adjust the volume in the Settings menu as well.

Select Voice

MapQuest offers a variety of voice options for turn-by-turn directions. On Android devices, you can choose between the default Google text-to-speech voice or download additional voice packs from the Google Play Store for a more natural listening experience. Some of the most popular options include American English voices like Susan and Ryan as well as foreign language voice packs.

To select your preferred voice on Android:

  1. Go to your device’s Settings.
  2. Tap Language & Input.
  3. Tap Text-to-speech options.
  4. Enable the Google Text-to-speech engine if it is not already enabled.
  5. Tap on the settings icon next to Google Text-to-speech Engine.
  6. Select the voice you want to use.

This will set the default text-to-speech voice used for turn-by-turn directions in MapQuest. Keep in mind you may need to download additional voice data packs from the Play Store for access to more natural voice options.

Volume Controls

MapQuest allows you to easily adjust the volume of voice directions or mute them entirely if needed. On iOS devices, you can adjust volume by tapping the “Get Directions” button, entering your destination, tapping “Drive”, and then tapping “Audio” at the bottom right of the screen (1). From there you can drag the volume slider left or right to decrease or increase volume. To mute, simply drag the volume all the way to the left.

On Android devices, tap “Audio” at the bottom right of the screen while navigating and adjust the volume slider as needed (2). Drag left to decrease volume or right to increase. Tap the mute icon to disable voice directions entirely.

Adjusting these settings allows you to customize the audio level based on your environment. For example, you may want the voice quieter if passengers are sleeping or louder if driving on the highway. MapQuest makes it easy to control the volume or mute as preferred.

Voice Prompts

While navigating with MapQuest, voice prompts give audio directions to guide you along the route. Some examples of voice prompts you may hear include:

  • “Turn left in 500 feet onto Main Street.”
  • “Your destination is on the right.”
  • “Recalculating route.”

To minimize voice prompts, you can adjust the settings in the MapQuest app. On iOS, go to Settings > Navigation > Verbal Alerts and turn off any alerts you don’t need ( On Android, go to Settings > Guidance and turn off any options under “Voice prompts” that you want to disable ( This allows you to customize the experience and only hear the voice prompts that are most useful to you.

Alternative Options

If you prefer not to use MapQuest for voice directions, there are some alternatives worth considering: notes that most smartphones come with built-in GPS and mapping apps that provide turn-by-turn voice directions, like Google Maps for Android phones and Apple Maps for iPhones. Using your phone’s preinstalled apps can provide voice guided directions without needing to download a separate app like MapQuest.

There are also third-party mapping and navigation apps available that offer voice directions as an alternative to MapQuest, according to Some popular options include Waze, Here WeGo, OsmAnd, and Roadtrippers – all providing turn-by-turn voice navigation and real-time traffic updates. These apps can be downloaded onto your smartphone as an alternative to using MapQuest for voice guided driving directions.


If you are having issues with voice directions in MapQuest, there are some troubleshooting steps you can try:

Common problems include the voice not speaking at all or the voice volume being too low. To fix no voice issues on Android, you can try closing the MapQuest app completely and reopening it ( On iOS, double tap the home button to fully close the MapQuest app and then restart it (

To fix low volume problems, first make sure your device’s overall volume is turned up and not muted. You can also try increasing the MapQuest voice volume in the app settings. If the voice still seems quiet, check your device’s accessibility settings to ensure MapQuest has permission to play audio.

As a last resort, you can reset the MapQuest voice settings. On Android, go to App Settings > Navigation > Voice Navigation and select “Reset to Default”. On iOS, delete and reinstall the MapQuest app to fully reset it.

Tips for Using MapQuest Voice Directions

Here are some tips for getting the most out of MapQuest’s voice direction feature:

To optimize the voice directions experience, make sure to adjust the voice type and speed in the app’s settings (see MapQuest Voice Settings). Try out a few different options to find your preferred voice and pace. It can be helpful to slow down the speech rate when first getting accustomed to voice prompts.

Also be sure to adjust the voice guidance volume in the app settings. Choose a volume loud enough to hear clearly over any background noise in the car. But avoid maxing out the volume, as you may still need to be able to hear horns or sirens.

To reduce distractions, limit use of your device while driving with voice guidance on. Voice prompts allow you to keep your eyes on the road. Only glance down briefly when you need to confirm directions.

Before starting your trip, take a moment to enter the complete route and enable voice prompts. This allows the directions to load fully into the app so you won’t need to fumble with the device mid-route.

For walking directions, consider using a bluetooth earpiece to hear prompts hands-free. This allows you to keep your phone stowed while navigating by foot.

Voice guidance works well in many situations, but have a backup plan if needed. Low cellular service areas or loud ambient noise may interfere. Know your route basics in case prompts cut out.


Voice directions can provide important accessibility benefits for visually impaired users. As an assistive technology, voice directions allow users with visual disabilities to navigate safely and independently using audible prompts. According to research from the Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI), speech interfaces are crucial for enabling equitable access to mobile apps and devices. Voice directions read aloud turn-by-turn instructions, street names, and points of interest so visually impaired users can get to their destination without looking at a screen.

In addition to benefiting those with complete blindness, voice directions can also aid those with limited vision who may have difficulty reading small text on a map or phone screen. By providing information through clear audible speech, voice directions allow users to focus their visual attention on their surroundings rather than trying to interpret visual map data. As an inclusive technology, voice directions fulfill the promise of independence and confidence for the visually impaired.


To recap, turning on voice directions in MapQuest is straightforward. You simply need to go into the app settings and enable “Voice Directions”. This will allow MapQuest to provide turn-by-turn voice guidance during navigation.

Having voice directions enabled has many benefits for users. It allows you to keep your eyes on the road while driving, as you can listen to the directions instead of having to constantly look down at your phone. The voice guidance is also helpful for walking directions when you don’t want to keep staring at your phone. Overall, voice directions make navigation safer and easier.

With voice enabled in MapQuest, you can have peace of mind that you’ll be expertly guided to your destination. The voice will alert you to upcoming turns and give you plenty of time to maneuver. Give it a try next time you need directions!

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