Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Please read this FAQ to get the answers to some of the questions most frequently asked by Waze map editors, and to learn how to avoid some of the common mistakes editors make. Many more common questions are covered by the other FAQs listed below. This FAQ is maintained by the user community.
- Waze FAQ - Maintained by Waze management team with overview questions
- Forum FAQ - FAQ information on how to best use the forums, as provided by the phpBB forum software package.
- The Glossary explains words and phrases which are often used with special meanings.
- 1 What are those dots on some of the roads?
- 2 What is Waze Map Editor?
- 3 What is Dashboard?
- 4 What are My Drives?
- 5 When do my Drives show up in the Waze Map Editor?
- 6 What happens when I drive on an unknown (unmapped) road?
- 7 I recorded new roads in the client - what now?
- 8 When do my roads show up in the Live Map?
- 9 When do my edits show up in the Waze app?
- 10 What web browser do you recommend for editing roads?
- 11 Why do I get to see traffic reports hundreds of miles away in the client?
- 12 How do I turn off the pop-up reports when not moving?
- 13 What is a locked road?
- 14 On My Dashboard all my points are gone, and the date of the last update is very old. What's wrong?
- 15 How are points calculated?
- 16 Some of my points are missing
- 17 How does Waze determine my home state or country?
- 18 How can I delete my account and all info from Waze?
- 19 How can I change my username?
- 20 When are weekly points calculated?
- 21 Do I get points/credit for driving without navigation mode on?
- 22 Why isn't the location of other Wazers in the app accurate?
- 23 Does Waze support time-based turn restrictions where turns are allowed or restricted during certain times of day?
- 24 What do I do when Waze has my destination or address at the wrong location?
- 25 Can I add a road hazard or accident to the map from home or the office?
- 26 Can I search for an intersection of streets and not by address?
- 27 Why does Waze sometimes fail to connect to routing servers or displays no network connection available?
- 28 Can I navigate to latitude and longitude or GPS coordinates?
- 29 Why doesn't Waze learn my routes?
- 30 How does Waze work, and do I get points for, driving with no or flaky data network connection?
- 31 Should I map separate turn lanes and exit approaches with long waiting times to help Waze calculate best route?
- 32 Waze is repeatedly losing GPS signal. What can I do about this?
- 33 How do I get support for my Waze question?
What are those dots on some of the roads?
These are roads that haven't been driven over since they first appeared on the waze map, whether they were imported from another mapping source, created in the map editor, or paved from the application. They are more likely than other roads to have mistakes in their shape or junctions, so treat them with caution. When you drive over such roads your Waze car changes to a Pacman-type character and "munches the dots". This earns you points and confirms that the road is really there. Many Wazers call these Pacman-roads.
What is Waze Map Editor?
Waze Map Editor is the official name of the current, web-based map editor. It is often abbreviated WME. You can access WME:
NOTE - Make sure to select WORLD / USA from the top of the menu on the right side.
What is Dashboard?
Dashboard is the name of your personal information console. You can find various information about your Waze account here, including most recent driven routes. You can access it through: http://www.waze.com/dashboard
What are My Drives?
Drives are journeys or routes that you have driven with the Waze client running. While you drive, Waze monitors your journey (recording details like location, time & speed) and transfers this information to the Servers. This data is used to validate the existing mapping (roads, turns, etc.) and to learn average journey times. Other Waze users and Area Managers can also view the anonymous GPS tracks of many users when editing the map in the Waze Map Editor. This helps with map accuracy. See also the Drives Tab.
When do my Drives show up in the Waze Map Editor?
Drives are typically processed and available for viewing in the Waze Map Editor within an hour of completing the drive. For most short drives such as commutes to work and back under 50km or so, you will likely find them in the editor in under 15 minutes. If the servers are bogged down, or if your drive is significantly longer, such as 150km+, drives may take up to a week to appear.
What happens when I drive on an unknown (unmapped) road?
Simply drive on a road that is not on the Waze map. Waze records your drive as usual. When you select one of your drives in the editor, you can find the "new road" section. If it is far enough away from mapped roads, Waze will mark it with a dotted red line. You can draw a new road following the correct part of your drive.
Another way to build new roads is to use the "pave" mode in your mobile app. Use the reports button. In some countries, there will be a large button with a picture of a yellow tractor. In other countries, like the US, choose "map issue" and then "Pave" and follow the instructions. As soon as you get far enough away from a known road, Waze will start recording your movement as new road segments, with junctions (nodes) at your turns. When Waze detects that you are back on a known road, road building mode is automatically paused.
Please turn off road building mode when it is not needed to prevent duplicate roads being recorded in case of GPS errors on your mobile device or errors downloading parts of map due to poor cellular phone coverage.
When you are done, wait until the road turns red on your screen before turning off paving mode to make sure the final segment is saved. If you have accidentally started to record a road in error, you can quickly turn off pave mode before it is saved
Updates of the map are made based on your recording, but you may have to wait 48h or longer before changes show up.
I recorded new roads in the client - what now?
Your newly recorded roads will not appear in Live Map until they have been edited in the Waze Map Editor. WME will show unknown roads in red, however, Live Map will only show small arrows if you zoom right in to indicate that it knows of a street/road with no name. The editing updates will need to be done by either you or the appropriate Area Manager or another user who has also driven close to this road previously.
When the paved road shows up in the Waze Map Editor depends on the drive processing time, which is covered in the When do my Drives show up in the Waze Map Editor? answer above.
Please log into the Waze Map Editor and edit the details of the road you recorded. You must set the road category, its name, city, and directionality. You must also ensure it is properly connected to other roads to allow Waze to use it correctly for routing.
It is planned to implement functionality in the Waze servers to countdown from the road creation so that they disappear from WME unless they have been edited (something like 30 days) to prevent roads incorrectly recorded from remaining on the Live Map.
When do my roads show up in the Live Map?
Generation of the Live Map should take place daily, but the queue of changes is lengthy, so most map edits should appear in the Live Map within 2 days. Clicking a location where a road is located will show the most recently updated data. Updates to the map on the Waze client app happen at the same time. There can be delays in the map update cycle which will be documented on Waze Status.
From the Waze web application you can look at the Live Map tab and at the lower left of the screen below the map you will see the last update of that map information.
Newly recorded roads will not appear in Live Map until they have been edited in the Waze Map Editor. This will need to be done by either you or the appropriate Area Manager.
When do my edits show up in the Waze app?
The normal process, is that on a regular basis, the map tiles update process runs on the servers. When it starts, any edits which are complete by that time will be included in the current map update cycle. The map tile updating process can take several days or even weeks on the World server, and are currently happening approximately daily on the North American server. Depending on when you save the edit, on the North America server, it will appear in 1 or 2 days. More details are covered in the Timeline of updating process.
Once the map update cycle is complete, the tiles are loaded into the client map and the live map. The date that the update process is complete is referred to as the Update Date, though this can be confusing because the edits which made it into that cycle may be days older. The status page is usually updated with the latest map update cycle information, which includes the "with updates through x date" information. The Waze Map Editor provides a link to this site on the left side of the bottom bar.
Tiles displayed in the app are cached, and are only refreshed when one of the following conditions is met:
- You are showing a specific location on the map from the address search.
- You are navigating to or through the tile.
- The tile is over one week old.
- You use the manual option to Refresh map of my area under Settings >> Advanced >> Data Transfer
Note that the Waze app tends to get the updated tiles before the Live Map on the website.
What web browser do you recommend for editing roads?
Waze recommends using the Google Chrome browser.
Support for Microsoft Internet Explorer (IE) is limited and some editing functions may not work properly.
The following browsers are acceptable for use with Waze Map Editor:
Why do I get to see traffic reports hundreds of miles away in the client?
The traffic reports on the client show traffic alerts and user-posted hazards within the Event Radius you have set in the Waze app. This event radius includes your route if you are in navigation mode. Waze only actively shows you the traffic reports within a certain radius of your location (using a pop-up). At this time, the minimum distance from your location or route for alerts is 5mi/km.
How do I turn off the pop-up reports when not moving?
There is no setting to just turn off the reports which pop-up when not moving. See answer above on how to minimize the report count.
To turn off these pop-ups, you need to turn off the "Download traffic data" Advanced option.
BE WARNED: This also turns off all speed data which shows the speed of roads around you (colored roads), but does not prevent Waze from rerouting you when the traffic slows down.
What is a locked road?
Some countries support automated traffic locks preventing changes from editors below the lock rank of the segment.
Segments that are locked will affect the turn restrictions for all other segments connected to either end of the locked segment at those junctions. Therefore when changing turn restrictions for another segment you find the turn restriction is not changing, check the other segments at that junction. It is possible another segment is locked at a rank higher than your current editing rank.
On My Dashboard all my points are gone, and the date of the last update is very old. What's wrong?
To make sure you're logged in to the correct server, click on My dashboard, and on the bottom of the page under the "Editing and Community Stats" section choose USA & Canada, or World.
How are points calculated?
|Road reporting1||6||per report|
|Gas/Fuel price reports||8||per report|
|Report comments||3||per comment|
|Editing the map2||3||per edit|
|Place photo||6||per photo|
|Place update||3||per detail added3|
|Solving map update requests||3||per request solved|
|Adding street names||3||per name4|
|Adding house numbers||1||per segment|
|Forum posts||2||per 3 forum posts|
|Road goodies||Face Value||per goodie|
|Activity||Per mile||Per km|
|New road recording (paving)||64||40|
For the latest information on points, please see The Waze Support Get More Points Page
1 Pings, chit-chats, and their comments do not accumulate points.
2 Mass-editing (selecting multiple roads and update them) in the current Waze Map Editor tracks each of the above edits separately, but edits to geometry are all counted as a single edit for each segment. The editor will count these mass edits as one "unsaved change" per mass edit, so the count tracked on the WME screen is not the points you will collect.
3 Adding a category, updating location, adding hours, services, description, phone number, or website.
4 New street names only count if the street has not been named already.
5 With or without navigation.
Some of my points are missing
How does Waze determine my home state or country?
The scoreboard allows you to compete for points against other wazers in your state or country. Waze automatically matches you to the state or country based on where you have earned the most points in the last week.
How can I delete my account and all info from Waze?
You can choose to delete your Waze account, your username (if you have set one up) and your personal information by using the "Delete Account" option which is available under the Settings menu in the application and on the Waze website. If you delete your Waze account all your credits, saved favorite locations, drive history and rank will be gone. Information you have contributed to Waze (like map edits and statistical drive data) will not be removed, but it will not be linked to you.
How can I change my username?
In the Waze App, Open Settings, then choose Account & Login, then select Username.
When are weekly points calculated?
Points are added up from Monday through Sunday. Alerts usually appear on your client on Monday morning.
Yes. All driving when Waze is running, whether in navigation mode or not, is tracked and can give you points. There are reasons why you may not see all your drives or get points for driving. See the flaky network connection question below for more information about those situations.
Why isn't the location of other Wazers in the app accurate?
Other Wazers shown on the map in the app are delayed by between 2-5 minutes. This is both for security concerns, server capacity, and network data capacity. It would be a huge amount of data required to update every Wazer's location every 2 seconds.
Does Waze support time-based turn restrictions where turns are allowed or restricted during certain times of day?
This feature is described in Partial restrictions. Prior to this feature being available, it was recommended that in order to prevent Waze from recommending an illegal turn, if a turn is restricted during any time of day, it is usually better to restrict the turn completely. This is especially true when the restriction is set during commute hours when the traffic is the most busy and confusing.
What do I do when Waze has my destination or address at the wrong location?
If Waze is routing you to the wrong location for your destination, it likely is due to Waze getting the wrong GPS coordinates for the destination. In most parts of the world, Waze relies exclusively on 3rd party content providers for address and POI locations. Waze sends your address or POI search to these 3rd parties, and they then return to Waze GPS coordinates for that destination. Waze then routes to the closest location on the Waze map for the GPS coordinates. For example, if Waze routes to the street behind the location, that is because the GPS coordinates for that location are closer to that street behind the location than the street you actually access the location from.
To solve the errors in external providers' data, you need to update the GPS coordinates with the 3rd party provider who is supplying the bad information to Waze.
- In the US & Canada, address lookups are handled by Google. To confirm the GPS coordinates, look up the address on Google and verify the pin for the location corresponds to the location being used by Waze. If the pin is wrong, you can update its location.
- Instructions on how to report a map issue in Google maps can be found here or instructions on how to update the map manually can be found here. (Note: you will need a Google account)
- For other countries, visit the country specific section of the forum to find out the provider of address coordinates for your area.
- POI lookups (business names) are provided by a variety of providers. Look to see what tab in the search results you are using for the POI to determine which provider you need to contact to fix the GPS coordinates.
Most providers offer a way to submit corrections to their location data.
Sometimes, incorrect locations come from Waze advertisements. Please report such incorrect advertisements to a Waze Champ.
In cases where the pin for the location is accurate but Waze is routing to a nearer (but incorrect) road, the goal is to add or change Waze roads so that the Waze road nearest the pin will lead the routing algorithm to route correctly. This may be done via Parking Lot Roads or unnamed Streets if the public named roads that should be used for proper routing are not sufficient to get nearest the pin location. In some cases it may be due to a target road such as a cul-de-sac ending too close to another road. Usually the cul-de-sac end point should be placed in the middle of the cul-de-sac. Different roads should be separated by 50 feet (16 meters) where possible.
The Waze map editor currently allows for the limited placement and adjustment of addresses on streets, and while it is a good idea to update this address information for accuracy, it is not currently being used by Waze for navigation except in cases where Google fails to return a result.
Can I add a road hazard or accident to the map from home or the office?
Yes, use Feed The Waze
http://feedthe.waze.hu/ - (Int'l Only)
A North America version has been proposed: FeedTheWaze Proposal
The Waze client only allows you to report things such as Police, Accident, Hazard, Camera, etc., based on your current GPS location only.
Can I search for an intersection of streets and not by address?
Yes. In the Navigate search box, enter "A St and B St" and search. You will likely need to switch the search results to Bing or Google to get an accurate search result.
Why does Waze sometimes fail to connect to routing servers or displays no network connection available?
Waze does have problems returning longer routes where the straight line distance is significantly shorter than the actual route over the roads. The common cause of this is having avoid toll roads turned on. You should verify that you have "avoid toll roads" turned off, having this feature turned on can cause Waze to not use known routes which in some areas, maybe the only known route by Waze routing servers and then causes the routing servers issue.
For No Network Connection issue, Verify you have good cellular/network coverage on your mobile device. You will need an active cellular or wifi network connection to connect to Waze servers to calculate a route. A weak signal or slow data speeds (2G speeds) can often cause these types of errors. If the issue is occurring with good cellular/network coverage, try rebooting the device, if that does not resolve the issue try uninstalling Waze, re-download it & install Waze again.
Yes. In the Navigate search box, enter the numeric values of the latitude and longitude separated by a comma. Longitudes East are positive and West are negative, and latitudes North are positive and South are negative.
For example, in the United States, Disney's Epcot Center in Orlando, Florida, is located at these coordinates: "28.37529,-81.54942"
More details are available on Waze Help Center.
Why doesn't Waze learn my routes?
The setting within the Dashboard page, "Auto-learn routes to frequent destinations" is misleading. Waze only learns your favorite destinations but does not learn or store actual routes. It will pop-up with the "Are you going home?" or "going to work?" messages for these frequented destinations.
Waze should always pick what it believes is, mathematically, the fastest or shortest route, depending on your settings. If, in your estimation, it doesn't, that means that there could be an error in the map somewhere along your preferred route, or there is a lack of correct speed/traffic data for that route, or lack or correct speed/traffic data on the route it is trying to send you on. If it isn't too far out of your way, take the suggested route a few times and Waze will collect and start to use that data in its routing decisions.
The reason just driving the expected or preferred route won't work automatically is because Waze could have incorrect speed data on the segments it wants you to take. If Waze thinks another road is 2x as fast as your preferred road, no amount of driving on your preferred road can change the data for the other road. Waze needs accurate data for all neighboring segments and routes in order to always compute the fastest (or shortest, depending on your app setting) route.
How does Waze work, and do I get points for, driving with no or flaky data network connection?
For all aspects of Waze to operate, it was built assuming a data network connection would be present most of the time. If you have an intermittent connection, Waze will try to get data from the servers for traffic alerts and hazards, but may not be able to give you reliable information. Additionally, if Waze doesn't have a connection back to the Waze servers, you will not be able to post hazards. Waze does not cache reports or map issues for sending later.
In regard to points or drive integrity, Waze will collect the data in terms of where you have driven even during network outages. In order for you to get credit for and being able to see in the editor your drive data collected during network outages, Waze must be able to upload your drive at the end of your trip. Waze sends this retained information when you shut it down. The Waze app does not cache your drives after shut down. If the Waze app does not have a connection to the servers when you shut down, any drive data not yet uploaded to the Waze servers will be lost, and any points associated with it will not be credited.
There is still some debate as to whether Waze will try to upload the most recent drive when you start Waze the next time, but this hasn't been conclusively proven.
Should I map separate turn lanes and exit approaches with long waiting times to help Waze calculate best route?
Waze computes the individual durations between any segment to any other segment through a common junction. That enables Waze to determine if the time to turn left at a light is longer than going straight and taking an alternate route to the destination. This is also true for long exit ramps from a freeway or motorway. Waze knows the slow vehicles are turning off the exit ramp and the fast ones are continuing straight. The only exception to this would be if there are unnecessary junctions with two segments before that exit ramp.
Waze is repeatedly losing GPS signal. What can I do about this?
First, verify that other similar apps or GPS utility apps do or do not show similar symptoms. If the problem is only occurring in Waze, try rebooting the device. If that does not resolve the problem, try uninstalling Waze, then re-download it & install Waze again. Other things to consider: Where is your phone when this happens? A windshield mount? On your lap? In a tunnel? Tucked into the console somewhere? To operate properly, the device running Waze needs to have an unobstructed view of the sky.
How do I get support for my Waze question?
Waze is a community driven application. In order to keep the application free to everyone, the community does what it can to be self-sufficient with support needs. For this reason there is a recommended process everyone is asked to use in order to help answer the hundreds of questions that come in every day.
There are three sources of support for Waze:
The Wiki is full of information on the back end Waze Map Editor (WME). Should you look for information about the mobile device application, please refer to the Waze Help Center. In the search box enter your topic of interest. You may be presented with a particular page on your topic, or you might get a list of possible topics. If you don't find what you are looking for try to use alternate words to describe your topic. Ultimately if you do not find what you are looking for try the forums next.
The forums are primarily for community-based support meaning the vast majority of the questions posed there will be answered by fellow Waze users and editors. Many of these Wazers are very experienced and typically know where to find the answer to your question if you cannot find it. Some of the forums are also monitored by Waze staff and will also post announcements on some of the forums for everyone to see.
There are cases where the forum experts will tell you that you need to fill out a support ticket. This is covered under the Waze Help Center section next.
Waze Help Center
Answers to general questions, especially in concern to the Waze app, can be found in the Waze Help Center. Access the Help Center by visiting support.google.com/waze or by clicking support at the top of the Waze website.
Once on the Help Center page, click to see dropdown menus of various topics, or type in a few keywords into the search bar. Topics ranging from Missing Points, log in issues, blank maps, and more can be found in the Help Center. If your question is not covered try alternate terms and/or wording.
Check out the Known issues in this version topic for problems Waze is aware of and currently working on a fix.