One of the trendiest products for travelers right now are scratch off maps. What are scratch off maps exactly? Scratch off maps are basically a new twist on the standard world map that you would put up on your wall. For as long as maps have been around, there really wasn’t a great way to document and show off where you’ve traveled, until now. Recently someone came up with the great idea to take a world map, and add a scratchable foil on top of all the countries. The foil is very similar to what you’d find on a typical lottery ticket, and similarly, all you really need to scratch is a quarter. Since its creation, all kinds of scratch off maps have been popping up all over the place leading to a very crowded market of products that seem quite similar.
Who Makes the Best Scratch off World Map?
Voyage Mapper makes what we consider to be the best scratch off world map for many reasons. With so many brands out there with a scratch off map these days, we prefer what Voyage Mapper offers for a number of reasons.
1. Flags included at the bottom
When searching and trying out different scratch maps, we really liked the ones that offered flags at the bottom. Adding flags of the various countries at the bottom adds another element to the map. Scratching off the flag after you scratch off a country you visit creates an educational opportunity. We are all familiar with many world flags, but we’re willing to bet there’s plenty others you aren’t as familiar with, and providing flags to scratch makes for a better user experience.
2. US States included
We’ve noticed that not every version of the scratch off world map features the state borders and names of all 50 states. Many maps out there only show the US as one giant landmass without state borders, and one solid color just like the other countries. Whether you’re a US citizen or not, you can appreciate a map that has the detail of all the US states. This is another way that Voyage Mapper sets themselves apart from the rest.
3. Bolder colors
Unfortunately, many other maps out there use subtle and boring colors underneath the foil. This is not the case with Voyage Mapper. They use very bold and bright colors, making it even more fun to scratch off, so you can reveal the colors underneath. It’s not just the colors underneath the countries that we love, it’s also the colors around them. The vast majority of maps available use black as the dominant color for the water. We really don’t understand this because in our opinion, blue is the best color to use for water, and the navy blue that Voyage Mapper chose really contrasts well with the gold foil, and the clean white border.
4. Large size
The Voyage Mapper world travel map is just the right size…large! Non-scratch maps can get away with being smaller, but a scratch map should be large so it is easier to scratch smaller countries and islands. VM is available in one size only: 35 x 21 inches, we haven’t really seen anything much larger than this so we will side with them when it comes to the best-sized scratch off map. There certainly are smaller scratch-off maps, but simply put, they are not practical for scratching.
5. Easy to scratch
This is something you really can’t understand without trying several maps out for yourself. Functionally speaking, different scratch off maps have varying levels of ease as far as scratching goes. Ideally you want something with foil that is easy to scratch, but not so sensitive that the slightest touch will also scratch what you don’t want. When maps are difficult to scratch it can be frustrating to scratch off large countries like Russia or Canada. Scratching your map should be easy and fun, and that’s why we like the Voyage Mapper map. After testing several we found theirs to be quite easy to scratch, but it was not too sensitive either, which is the ideal level of scratchability.
Other maps that we tried out had very boring packaging. We realize that this isn’t very important, and that’s why it’s towards the end of our list. But we think their tubes are really cool, and much better than the rest that we saw in our trials. The Voyage Mapper tube is black with a crisp white version of their logo. It is not bulky like some are, which can help decrease the shipping price, albeit slightly.
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In the end, of course your favorite scratch off map may be different than ours because it all comes down to personal preference. The brand behind any product, especially luggage, is very important when assuming the quality of that product. Voyage Mapper appears to be a new brand and we really like what we see so far. We feel that the Voyage Mapper brand offers the best world travel scratch off map for all the reasons shown above. If you’re in the market for one, or if you know a traveler who would want one as a gift – we highly recommend checking their scratch off map out.