Why Google Maps Doesn’t Suggest the Shortest Route and Insists You Take a Detour to Reach Your Destination

Google Maps not only focuses on the distance to your destination but also on making the trip faster and more efficient, even if the route is sometimes longer.

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You may have noticed it: When you type an address in Google Maps, the app at times doesn’t select the shortest route to your destination, but rather says that you to take another that seems longer at first glance.

No, Google Maps hasn’t gone crazy. It has good reasons for suggesting the longest route. By considering several factors and analyzing data, the platform determines the best way to reach your destination faster, even if you have travel longer distances than other routes the app suggests.

Why Google Maps Sometimes Doesn’t Choose the Shortest Route for Your Trips

Google Maps isn’t just a simple map and navigation app. It’s a platform that tracks your travels, the destinations you’ve visited, and the routes and types of transportation you’ve used. In addition, it also analyzes traffic and the times when there are more cars are on major roads and highways.

The app uses all this information to calculate different routes to your destination. However, at times, Google Maps may seem to choose the longest route, which could make it take longer to get where we want to go.

But this isn’t the norm. When Google Maps chooses a route to get you from point A to point B, it considers things like road traffic and speed limits. According to Autoevolution, in some cases, its algorithms can even determine which route is more fuel-efficient.

However, Google Maps sometimes chooses a longer route during times of low traffic, such as at night or early in the morning. In this scenario, your driving habits and preferences may be the reason behind the suggestion. That is, if Google Maps has registered that you usually prefer to use a shortcut or a particular street when traveling through certain parts of the city, it could take this as an indication that you prefer to use that street regardless of the time of day or traffic.

Google Maps wants to get you to your destination as quickly as possible, and in some cases, that means taking a longer route. Based on its data and analysis, the app doesn’t care if it makes you take a longer route if it means you'll get there faster.

To customize your Google Maps routes, access the app on your Android phone and follow these steps:

  • Press on your avatar or profile picture (in the upper right corner).
  • Then go to Settings
  • Click on Navigation settings.
  • This section allows you to configure your preferences, including whether you want Google Maps to avoid tolls or highways.

Image | Eva Rodriguez de Luis for Xataka On

Related | Google Maps vs. Apple Maps: What Features Do They Have and What Are Their Main Differences?

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