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What’s the Best Way to Plan a Route With Multiple Stops in 2024

Exploring various methods for planning delivery routes with multiple stops, including the inefficiency of manual methods like pen and paper or Microsoft Excel.

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Is it difficult for your delivery service to make deliveries to multiple stops on time? Poor route planning, ineffective tools or processes, or real-time constraints like as traffic could all be contributing factors. So how do you plan multi-stop itineraries effectively?

In this blog post, we’ll look at various methods for constructing delivery routes. While some companies utilize whiteboards or maps to plan their routes, others employ multi-stop route planning software. The difficulties and their solutions change depending on the global logistics market’s logistical trends. The option you choose is determined by your requirements and financial constraints.

Continue onward to learn the best way to plan a route with multiple stops.

Table of Contents

  • What is the difference between a route and a routing?
  • What is the Vehicle Routing Problem (VRP)?
  • Tips and Tricks for Planning a Route with Multiple Stops
  • The Best Way to Plan a Multi-Stop Route
  • Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
  • Create Multiple Routes with Multiple Stops for Multiple Drivers at Once

What is the difference between a route and a routing?

A route is a path or plan that has a beginning and an end point. It’s the method you use to get from one place to another. While routing is the process of designing a cost-effective path for moving from one site to another in terms of supply chain and logistics.

A route might either have a single destination or multiple stops. Between the starting point and the ending point of a multi-stop route, there are several destinations.

What is the Vehicle Routing Problem (VRP)?

The Vehicle Routing Problem, in terms of logistics and supply chain, is the difficulty of determining the most cost-effective routes. Solving a routing problem entails determining the best route from one site to a group of geographically dispersed destinations. The Travelling Salesman Problem is another name for the Vehicle Routing Problem. VRP is a combinatorial optimization problem that has been studied and calculated extensively.

Tips and Tricks for Planning a Route with Multiple Stops

The vehicle routing problem and multi-stop route planning can be solved in a variety of ways.

Pencil and Paper

For many years, drivers have used pen and paper to plan their routes. However, utilizing a manual method such as pen and paper to list, assess, assess choices, and develop best routes might take a long time. Because it lacks an in-built navigation system, this device is ineffective for a delivery crew and delivery drivers.

Microsoft Excel

For years, businesses and individuals have relied on Microsoft Excel to handle a variety of challenges. Excel is a cost-effective alternative to pen and paper, but it cannot provide navigation or instructions.

Road Maps

Physical versions of maps that provide navigation through a specific area are known as road maps. Road maps are useful since they include a genuine zip code for each place, making it easy to find addresses. They are unquestionably superior to pen and paper as a manual system. A motorist, on the other hand, cannot receive real-time traffic updates or voice-guided guidance. Multiple stops must be manually adjusted.

Free Route Planning App

Free apps for route planners are a terrific method to automate a time-consuming activity. These free route planner apps can not only build an accurate route plan, but they can also optimize routes based on your needs, provide real-time traffic statistics, collect evidence of delivery, and provide voice-guided turn-by-turn directions. Google Maps, Mapquest, and Waze are all free route planner tools that can help you plan your journey. Generally, however, there is a limit to the number of stops you can route. Some enterprise-grade route planners like EasyRoutes also offer free plans.

Enterprise-Grade Software

While route planning apps are appropriate for small businesses, enterprise-grade software is more useful in larger businesses that require a fleet management system. These are far more advanced than a Google Maps app. While enterprise-grade software is more expensive, it has a number of advantages, including the ability to manage larger fleets, data collection and storage, time savings, and the ability to provide reliable performance reports.

The Best Way to Plan a Route with Multiple Stops

The best way to plan a cost-effective multi-stop route is to utilize route planning software like EasyRoutes.

EasyRoutes is a route planning and optimization software tool that assists people and businesses who provide delivery services in creating optimized delivery routes in seconds. You can then take those routes and share them with your drivers or deliver them yourself.

EasyRoutes takes a “human-centric” approach to design that makes things extremely easy to use. It’s packed full of useful functionality from creating multiple-routes at once, to inventories and packing lists, to customer notifications.

Click here to learn more about route planning software and the advantages it provides.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is there a way to map out multiple locations?

Yes, you can map out multiple locations on a route with delivery route planner apps like EasyRoutes and Mapquest. With these route planning apps, there is no limit on the number of addresses.

Can Google Maps Plan a route with multiple stops?

Yes, Google Maps can plan a route with multiple stops. But you can only add up to 9 stops, excluding the starting point of the route.

How to plan the shortest route for multiple destinations in Google Maps?

Once you enter each stop of the route, try to change the route order and rearrange addresses to achieve an optimal and shortest possible route. The algorithm will start route optimization and offer the most efficient directions to reach your destination.

Create Multiple Routes with Multiple Stops for Multiple Drivers at Once with EasyRoutes

To catch up with a business’s constantly growing needs, you need to implement specific tools or solutions. In this case, a route planning software solution like EasyRoutes is the best way to plan and optimize routes with multiple destinations. You not only get route optimization and accurate directions to the addresses, but it also improves the overall productivity of the delivery process.

About Roundtrip

Roundtrip's mission is to equip every business with the software tools they need to deliver products to their customers in a delightful way. Thousands of Shopify merchants worldwide choose EasyRoutes to power their local deliveries across dozens of product categories, from meal kits and groceries to coffee, cupcakes, kibble, and so much more. Our easy-to-use route planning and delivery optimization app is certified Built for Shopify, a two-time Shopify staff pick, and the top rated local delivery app on the Shopify App Store.

"Firstly, the fuel savings are remarkable. With intelligent route optimization, our drivers take streamlined paths, cutting down fuel usage and vehicle wear. The time-saving aspect is a game-changer. What used to be a tedious task is now a breeze. Creating and managing routes takes mere minutes, freeing up invaluable time for our core business. Additionally, the real-time monitoring feature is a winner. It instills accountability and transparency, and knowing the status of each delivery has significantly boosted our customer satisfaction."
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