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Publish your GTFS feed data

To make your General Transit Feed Specification (GTFS) feed available to Google, we recommend that you publish it on the web. Google will then periodically fetch your Transit data from this web location to ensure that Google Maps has your most up-to-date feed information. You also have the option to upload your feed data manually.

Set up a publishing option

There are a number of locations where you can publish your feed on the web. Choose from the options below. 

  • Agency website: Publish your feed to your own website. To password protect the URL, use HTTP Basic & Digest authentication. NTLM (IIS/Win32) authentication is not supported.

  • Agency FTP server: Host your feed on your FTP server. You may password protect the URL using the standard FTP authentication mechanism.

  • Rented hosting from an FTP provider: Host your feed through rented FTP space. To find a provider, do a Google search for "FTP hosting service". 

  • Google Drive: Publish your feed on Google Drive. Once you save the URL of your feed data zip file to the Transit Partner Dashboard, we will email you to request access permission.

  • Manual upload via Transit Partner Dashboard: As a last resort, use the manual uploading option in the Transit Partner Dashboard.  We don’t recommend this option, as it often leads to stale data for users.

Manual upload process

Manually upload feed (screenshot)

  1. Access the Transit Partner Dashboard
  2. Select your feed
  3. Click Upload Files
  4. Choose the file you want to manually upload
  5. Click Save

Configure feed options in the Transit Partner Dashboard

In the Transit Partner Dashboard, you can specify how and when your feed is transferred. After you've configured these options, Google can start fetching your data.

  1. Access the Transit Partner Dashboard

  2. Click Feed configuration

  3. Complete the onscreen form

  4. Save your feed configuration

For best results, configure your settings so that Google automatically retrieves your feed whenever your data changes. To do this, do the following as part of step 3 in the process above.

  1. Select Download content from my server or web site.

  2. Under Where is your content? enter the complete path to the server where you store your feed.

  3. Click the Single files radio button.

  4. Select Transfer only new or updated file(s).

  5. Check Automatically retrieve data on a schedule.

  6. In the new form that opens, specify a data retrieval schedule. (We recommend retrieving the file daily.)

  7. Enter username and password (if required) to access your Google Transit file.

  8. Click Save.

Next steps

After you've completed these steps, Google can acquire and process your data feed. We create a staging environment where you can preview and make adjustments to your feed before launching it to the public. 

Learn more about using the private preview staging environment.

Immediate data fetch

As long as you've set up your fetch URL, you can start an immediate data fetch at any time. When you do this for the first time and receive confirmation that your feed was successfully processed, contact your Google team to let them know that you're ready for a private preview.

To begin a data fetch:

  1. Access the Transit Partner Dashboard.

  2. Click Feed configuration.

  3. Click Fetch now.

Fetch now button

Learn more about best practices for maintaining your data and feed

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