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 periodically fetches your transit data from this web location to ensure that Google Maps has your most up-to-date feed information. You can also manually upload your feed data. 

How to set up a publishing option

There are several locations where you can publish your feed on the web. Choose from the options below: 

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

To manually upload your feed, follow these steps:

Manually upload feed (screenshot)

  1. Open your Transit partner dashboard.
  2. Next to your feed, click Static feed.
  3. Under Status > Live & Update, click Upload files.
  4. Choose the file you want to manually upload.
  5. Click Process files.

How to edit feed options

In the Transit partner dashboard, you can specify how and when your feed is transferred. After you set these options, Google can fetch your data. To edit your feed options, follow these steps:

  1. Access the Transit partner dashboard.
  2. Click Static feed.
  3. Click Feed configuration.
  4. Complete the on-screen form.
  5. Click Save.

For best results, edit your settings so that Google automatically retrieves your feed whenever your data changes. To set up automatic feed retrieval, follow these steps:

  1. Access the Transit partner dashboard.
  2. Click Static feed.
  3. Click Feed configuration.
  4. Select Download content from my server or website.
  5. Under Where is your content?, enter the complete path to the server where you store your feed.
  6. Select Single files.
  7. Select Transfer only new or updated file(s).
  8. Check Automatically retrieve data on a schedule.
  9. In the new form that opens, specify a data retrieval schedule. We recommend retrieving the file daily.
  10. Enter your username and password (if necessary) to access your Google Transit file.
  11. Click Save.

Next steps

After you complete the above steps, Google can acquire and process your feed. We create a staging environment where you can preview and make adjustments to your feed before launching it to the public. 

Learn how to test your feed data using private preview.

How to set up immediate data fetch

After you 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, follow these steps:

  1. Open your Transit partner dashboard.
  2. Next to your feed, click Static feed.
  3. Click MoreTransfer this feed now.

Fetch now button

Learn more about best practices for maintaining your data and feed

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