Snap Map was introduced in 2017 and allowed Snapchat users to share their physical location in real-time with not only their friends but also, depending on their privacy settings, all other Snapchat users. They also had access to all publicly shared posts from any city or country they wanted.
Of course, this feature can be useful in an emergency, as it was demonstrated in late 2017 when it was used to document the damage caused by Hurricane Harvey. However, in this digital age, where we all want to “disappear” for a minute or two every now and then, the idea of everyone knowing where you are at any given moment sounds downright creepy.
How to Enable Ghost Mode on the App’s First Launch
The Snap Map feature is available right away after you download and install Snapchat on your iPhone or Android device. You can choose your visibility preferences by pinching them anywhere on the screen. Three options will be available in the app:
Only you will be able to see yourself on your Snap maps, and you will be invisible to your friends and other Snapchat users.
All of your Snapchat friends will be able to see your current location at any time.)
Select Friends… – You can choose which friends have access to your location information. This is especially useful if you want to share your location with a select group of people, such as friends or family, but don’t want random strangers to find you.
If you want to hide your location from your friends and disappear from Snapchat maps, simply select “Ghost Mode” and confirm by selecting “Next.”
How to Use the Camera Screen to Enable Ghost Mode
If you want to activate Ghost Mode after sharing your location for a while, follow the same steps as before. To access the Snapchat map, pinch the camera screen and tap the Settings (cog) icon in the top-right corner.
Simply toggle the switch next to “Ghost Mode” to “on” in the Settings menu, and your friends won’t be able to see your current location on their Snap maps.
No one will know where you were when you turned on Ghost Mode because your last shared/known location will also be hidden. To return to share your location, simply return to the Settings menu and toggle the switch next to Ghost Mode to “off.”
How to Enable Ghost Mode in Snapchat’s Settings
If you’re afraid of accidentally changing important settings because you’re too clumsy to pinch the camera screen (you’d be surprised how many smartphone users feel this way), you can turn on Ghost Mode directly from the Snapchat Settings menu.
Here’s what you should do:
- Open Snapchat.
- Tap on your Bitmoji in the top-left corner of the screen. If you haven’t yet configured one, tap on the recognizable Snapchat icon in that same place. Fun fact: this icon is named Ghostface Chillah as a tribute to Wu-Tang Clan’s Ghostface Killah.
- Tap on the Settings icon.
- In the Settings menu, under “Who Can…”, tap on “See My Location”.
- In the My Location menu, toggle the switch next to “Ghost Mode” to “on”.
To turn off Ghost Mode and resume sharing your location with your friends, simply repeat steps 1-4 and then toggle the switch to “off” in step 5.
When you turn off Ghost Mode, who can see your location?
The location sharing settings will be the same as they were before you turned on Ghost Mode when you decide to turn it off and make your location visible again. As a result, if you previously selected “My Friends,” it will be automatically selected again.
It’s important to note that if you only made your location visible to a few friends, Snapchat will remember who they are. You won’t have to recreate the list from scratch if you make yourself visible again.