The foursquare Platform

Core API

Our API lets you do all the things you could do on our mobile application and website. Your users can check in, view their history, see where their friends are, create tips and lists, search for and learn more about venues, and access specials and recommendations.

Real-time API

Our venue push API notifies venue managers when users check in to their venues, and our user push API notifies developers when their users check in anywhere.

Venues Platform

Just need a database of places? The Venues Platform allows developers to search for places and access a wealth of information about them, including addresses, popularity, tips, and photos. It's available free and without any user authentication, as long as applications include adequate attribution.

Merchant Platform

The Merchant Platform allows developers to write applications that help registered venue owners manage their foursquare presence and specials.

Quick start


Check users in from your app

  1. Have a user authorize your app.
  2. Pull up a list of nearby venues by calling venue search.
  3. Let your user select the venue that they’re at from the list.
  4. Call the check in endpoint with the selected venue ID to check them in.

Get recommendations

Show foursquare place recommendations

  • Optionally, have a user authorize your app.
  • Use HTML5 geolocation, a smartphone location API, or a geocoding provider to get a latitude and longitude to search near.
  • Call our venues explore endpoint to get a list of recommendations.
  • You can also specify (or ask your users to specify) specific types of venues to return (ie. “diner” or “salon”).

View check-in history

View a user's check-in history

  1. Have a user authorize your app.
  2. Call the check-ins endpoint.
  3. Use the data to make recommendations and visualizations!

Manage venues

Help merchants manage their venues

Check out our merchant API. You can:

See who's at this venue

See who's at this venue

  • If you're working with the venue manager, use the real-time API.
  • Or use here now.
  • In either case, be sure to comply with our policies!

See what's trending

See what's trending

Just use the trending endpoint.

Use our database of places

Access foursquare's venues database

Just search for venues near a point and then get details about any of the results.

Get instant user updates

Get instant user updates

Our real-time user-push API notifies you the instant a user checks in somewhere.

Want to do something not listed here?

No worries. These are just a sampling of our platform's most common use-cases

  • New? Check out our tutorial and getting started guide to learn more about the capabilities of our API.
  • All set up already? Hop on over to our endpoints.
  • Still can't find an answer? Ask it in our developers' forum, home to over 2,000 foursquare devs.