Best scratch map

Maps & Globes

A family works on a scratch map together.

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Which scratch map is best?

Scratch maps are a great way to beautifully track your travels and to turn them into a wonderfully aesthetic piece of wall decor that you can proudly display in your home. Whether you’re a world traveler heading off on a road trip across the United States or even visiting another country, there’s a scratch map for you. 

From world maps to regional maps, scratch maps are a great way to document your journeys.  The original Luckies of London scratch map, a top pick, has a vintage aesthetic before scratching and lovely colors to reveal underneath.

What to know before you buy a scratch map

Types of maps

There are two main projections, or ways of portraying the world, when it comes to maps. The Mercator Projection is the style of map with which most people probably are familiar. The benefit of this style of map is that it fills a rectangular space, like frames or sections of your wall, quite nicely. The downside of this map projection is that some areas of the world can look distorted, either appearing much larger or much smaller than they actually are.

The Robinson Projection, on the other hand, shows the world with more realistic proportions. However, the Robinson Projection might not be your cup of tea when it comes to aesthetics due to its rounded edges.

When choosing a scratch map, the type of map projection won’t make much of a difference to the functionality of the map. Buy whichever is most suited to your personal taste. If you’re interested in comparing several different scratch maps, check out the full BestReviews scratch map buying guide.

World, region and country scratch maps 

Scratch maps come in a variety of shapes and forms. Some scratch maps show the entire world, while others only focus on a specific region of the world, such as specific continents or even provinces and states.

Are all scratch maps made the same?

Just as scratch maps come in a variety of different aesthetics and with different focuses, some scratch maps come in completely different formats. For example, the Travelogue travel journal comes with several loose-leaf scratch maps that each showcase a different region.

Travelogue travel journal

Some scratch maps aren’t even maps, such as this USA National Parks scratch off map.

USA National Parks scratch off map

What to look for in a quality scratch map

Aesthetics

From watercolor to neon, scratch maps come in just about every color palette under the sun. When purchasing your scratch map, choose one that fits your personal aesthetic and your home’s decor both before and after the map has been scratched.

Features

Not all maps are made equally. If you are someone who values having a very detailed and accurate map, you may want to opt for one that has as many features as possible. This can range from a map that’s to-scale to even just showing latitude and longitude lines.

Some scratch maps don’t go into much detail, even when it comes to larger countries. For example, the Luckies of London scratch map divides some countries, such as Canada and Australia, into provinces, but it doesn’t divide other large countries, such as Brazil, into provinces.

Material

Most scratch maps are made of paper with a foil coating. Some, however, are built attached to a cork or plastic backing. Scratch maps built onto a piece of hardware usually are easier to hang and more durable than their paper counterparts.

How much you can expect to spend on a scratch map

Budget-friendly scratch maps run $20-$40 while more premium or larger scratch maps can reach up to $100.

Scratch map FAQ

What should you use to scratch off your map?

A. Much like a lottery ticket, you can use a coin to scratch away the foil. If this is too tedious for you, try using a simple eraser.

Is every country displayed on the world map? 

A. This depends on the map. Some of the world’s smaller countries may not be fully rendered on the map. If you want to mark off your adventures to small island countries in particular, be sure to verify that they are indeed on the map before purchasing.

What’s the best scratch map to buy?

Top scratch map

Luckies of London Original Scratch Map 

Luckies of London Original Scratch Map

What you need to know: The one and only original Luckies of London scratch map is beautifully designed and has stood the test of time.

What you’ll love: You’ll undoubtedly be impressed by the colorful display that’s waiting beneath the foil.

What you should consider: This can be scratched easily, so be careful to avoid any accidents.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top scratch map for the money

InnovativeMap Scratch Off World Map

InnovativeMap Scratch Off World Map

What you need to know: This dynamic map duo is sure to please with its refined aesthetics.

What you’ll love: This bundle comes with both a world map and an enlarged, detailed map of the United States. It’s perfect for those who want to track which states they’ve been to.

What you should consider: This can be scratched easily, and some users complained the map was scratched when they received it.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Scratch The World Travel Map

Scratch the World Travel Map

What you need to know: This scratch map has great attention to detail and is perfect for those who love the look of a more traditional map.

What you’ll love: The map is beautiful when displayed in a frame, thanks to its larger size. Most large countries are divided into their correct provinces, regions or states.

What you should consider: The colors under the foil are not as bright as the colors you may see on other scratch maps.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

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Addison Hoggard writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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