Places are searchable destinations in the Waze map, just like the "Points of Interest" found in certain popular GPS devices. They can be added from the client, but also in the Waze Map Editor (WME). Here you'll find the instructions on how to create a Place in WME. A Place can be a 'Point' or an 'Area'. Above a given size, Area Places become visible in the client. A Point Place is never visible, but both types can be searched and navigated to. There is also a third kind of Place called "Residential”, which are private addresses. These are always Point Places.
- 1 Point Places
- 2 Area Places
- 3 Residential or Private Places
- 4 Combined Places
- 5 When to use Area or Point in the BeNeLux
- 6 Places details
- 7 Lock Levels
- 8 Categories
Point Places don't show on the Wazers device. They can be used to help Wazers find locations, especially when they are not or wrongly listed in other destination search engines. As they are searchable from the app, accurate positioning of a point location and providing a full address (including street number) are both utterly important.
In WME, a Point appears as a small circle:
The Waze routing server will navigate the Wazer onto the segment which is physically closest to where the Point is placed. The Point Marker is the stop point. Typically, if the Place is inside a building, the marker should be located at or near the location's main entrance door. Try to imagine where you would stop to drop someone off for this location.
Area Places appear in the Waze app. Too many of them can clutter the map, creating large gray zones that do not help Wazers orient themselves. Therefore, it is important to use Area Places only when they are distinctive and significant enough to orient drivers.
Area Places should have a minimum area size of 500 m2 (e.g., 10m x 50m) to be visible in the client's display. Most of the other places are Point Places, except for Gas Stations, and Parking Lots, which are always areas, and receive special handling. See also the paragraph on how to determine Area or Point.
Generally, an Area Place only covers what a Wazer sees when driving to the actual location. It follows that the Area outline covers the building of the place, but never the whole property. However, an Area Place doesn't have to be as detailed as the building is, actually, it's better to keep the shape roughly. Natural features such as forests, parks, and lakes are drawn to the visible contours.
The different types of Area Places show in different colors in the app, as well as in WME. The colors vary slightly, depending on your display. Generally, Natural features show green (e.g., Park) or blue (e.g., River).
Each Area Place has a “Point Marker“ , which by default is centered. This point can be moved to where you should arrive, or where to park, even a short distance outside of the marked area, indicated by the black outline (see picture). Again, try to imagine where you would stop to drop someone off for this location.
Residential or Private Places
When arriving, Waze proposes to take a picture of your destination. In this way, many private Places are uploaded to WME. For these private Places, the category “residential” is used. Private Places will not be searchable, and the identity of whoever created them or attached pictures, will not be exposed. Private Places only contain photos and an exact address, without all the other properties of a Place. The pictures will only show to people driving explicitly to that address. Waze editors will be using the pictures and exact locations to improve the house numbers database.
Public Places can be turned into private Places, but private Places cannot be turned into public Places. Use the link located under the buttons for Point or Area in the menu, to convert Places mistakenly labeled as public into private.
Point Places within an Area Place are allowed and mostly used for shops in a shopping mall, faculties within a University campus, etc.. Avoid Areas within Areas, as this may become confusing on the client's display.
When to use Area or Point in the BeNeLux
The area size covered by the visible contours is primarily used to determine whether to use a Point or Area type of Place. Recent testing shows that Area Places should be at least 500 m2 (that is, 50 meters in one dimension and 10 meters in the other) to show up in the app. Tests are still being run to find out the minimum size. Until these tests result in different findings, Area Places should have a minimum area size of 500 m2. Anyway, it doesn't make sense to create smaller areas, for they will not be visible in the client's display.
All places are thus generally drawn as a Point Place, except when they are large and distinctive enough to help in the orientation during driving, which will often be the case with an Event Center, Factory, Hospital, Office, Camping, Shopping malls, Museums (e.g.,Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam), Monuments (e.g., Mardasson, Bastogne), Schools, Tourist Site, Attraction, Sports Court or Stadium. They are mapped as areas at the building outline and usually don't cover streets. Keep in mind the minimum area size for the decision to draw an Area instead of a Point. Every other destination, that is not a Parking Lot or a Gas Station, should be Points.
The table of categories at the bottom of this page also gives a guideline to choose between point and area places, according to their category, sub-category and probable area size.
Any Place - Point or Area - should contain as much information as possible.
The General tab for a Place is where you complete all of the basic information: categories, name, description, gas brand, residential/public, hours of operation, country, state, city, street and house number.
Places need at least one category to be assigned, but may belong to several others. Always choose the main category first. For example, a Gas Station may also be “Convenience Store”, “Car Wash”, or “Charging Station”. For a more detailed explanation of categories, see the next paragraph Categories. If possible, provide name and address. The naming of a Place should be done in the formal language of the location where the place is situated. Use the official name of the Place. In bi-lingual areas, use the alternate name. The address is especially useful to guide Wazers to the Place. Add other important information, such as brand (service stations) and opening times. Beware not to use the Description field for notes to other editors. This field is visible in the Waze app, and should only contain details pertinent to the Place itself.
In the picture below you see an example from the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam.
More Info tab
You can provide the website address and phone number in the “More Info” tab, where you can also select optional services, like Wifi, Toilets, Terrace or Parking for customers (not to be drawn separately!). Information in this tab are shown in the search results. From there you can click the website address or telephone number and activate your browser or phone function. Therefore, they should be in a usable format:
The website address is best written as www.adress.extension, like www.casca.nl. Leave out http:// or https://.
Telephone numbers should best be written in international format:
Generally, the number consists of the land code, followed by the area code (without 0), and than the subscribers number, all without dashes, slashes, and the like.
+32 AA BB BB BB, or +32 A BBB BB BB for landlines,
+32 4AA BB BB BB or +32 4AA BBB BBB for mobile numbers
+31 AA BBBBBBBB, or +31 AAA BBBBBBB for landlines,
+31 6 CBBBBBBB for mobile numbers
+352 local number (varies in amount of numbers and areas)
Any photos which drivers have added to a Place will appear in the "Photos" tab. In WME, we can only view and delete photos. Photos can only be uploaded via the Waze app.
Make a well thought-out decision about discarding a photo. Once a photo is deleted, it cannot be recovered. Delete only if the photo really is unclear, not helpful and/or inappropriate.
Please consider that places that are fundamental to the functioning of Waze, such as Parking Lots, should be locked at least to Level 2 (or higher, see table below), to prevent loss of data due to automatic acceptance of submissions.
The categories used in Waze are not always directly applicable to the BeNeLux, for they are global categories. At this time, it is not possible to adapt these categories to local customs. Waze has several major categories, which includes quite a number of subcategories.
If you choose a main category within WME, you automatically get to see the sub-categories to choose from. It is also possible to directly type in a category. If you cannot find an applicable sub-category, just use the main category.
Categories that require special handling are described briefly in this section. A complete list can be found in the table below. It also lists the keywords that can be used in the app to search for the category.
This main category contain Gas Stations, Parking Lot, Garage / Automotive Shop, Car Wash, and Charging Stations. The most important area places are Gas Stations and Parking Lots.
Gas stations are always drawn as an Area. They should be mapped to the edges of the property (or at least to the drivable area of the gas station). Care should be taken to ensure they don't snap to roads other than the Parking Lot Roads within the area of the location. In larger gas station Areas, a road can be helpful in the navigation on and of the area. This road should be drawn as a Parking Lot Road, without streetname.
There is more information contained in an Gas station Area than can be viewed in WME, such as available fuels and corresponding prices. Per country four fuel types are available, which are shown for all gas stations. Gas stations always get the name in the format <Brand> <Name Gas station>, for example “Shell De Rotonde”. Choose the Brand from the drop down menu. Leave this option blank if the brand is not listed.
If the gas station also includes a shop, you can choose that as a secondary category. If the shop has different opening times, for instance when at night gas taking is still possible via automatic payment, make an extra Point Place for the shop and categorize it as “Convenience Store”.
The international (US) Wiki has an extended description of Gas Stations. If there are differences in the guidelines, remember that the guidelines in the BeNeLux precede when applied to the map in Belgium, the Netherlands, or Luxembourg.
Gas stations in the BeNeLux are locked at level 3 or as high as your own level.
Parking Lot Places are always drawn as an Area. Care should be taken to ensure they don't snap to roads other than the Parking Lot Roads within the area of the location. Three principles govern whether a given lot, structure or garage warrants a Parking-Lot Area Place:
- General Public Use
- All Parking-Lot Area Places must be legally and locally condoned for at least short-term use (paid or not) by the general public. The Waze map must never show a Parking Lot Area Place where a naïve driver could risk towing, ticketing, or violating community norms. There are no exceptions.
- General Purpose Use
- Drivers who leave cars in a Parking-Lot Area Place should be entitled to walk or take other transportation to any destination of choice, and this should be a common occurrence.
- Distinctive and Significant
- Overuse of Area Places quickly leads to map clutter. A Parking-Lot Area Place must mark a parking facility that would be distinctive and significant to passing drivers.
Parking that does not satisfy these three principles shall not be marked with the Parking-Lot Area Place.
Paid Parking Lots
As long as parking satisfies the three principles of general public, general purpose, and distinctive and significant, it is eligible for a Parking-Lot Area Place regardless of whether it is free or paid. You may add the € symbol after the name of paid parkings, e.g., “Quick Parking Zaventem [€]”.
Parking Lots Names
Use the commonly used name such as “Quick Parking Zaventem”. To be avoided are names such as "Parking de l’Hôpital Saint-Luc" that suggest that the parking is dedicated; if it really is dedicated, it should not be a Parking Lot, and if it isn't, the name should not suggest that it is. Do not use completely generic names such as "Parking" or "Public Parking" for anonymous parking facilities. If a Parking Lot has no specific name, leave the name open or name it as [P]. In case the parking lot has no commonly used name please add the name of the road in the address. This should be the road where the (main) entrance of the parking lot is. This way when you search for a parking in the app you can see the difference between the PL's and it won't fill the map with unnecessary names.
The international (US) Wiki has an extended description of Parking Lots. If there are differences in the rules, remember that the rules in the BeNeLux precede when applied to the map in Belgium, the Netherlands, or Luxembourg.
As Parking Lots are important for Waze routing, the Area Places should be locked to Level 2 at least.
Charging station are Point Places with the following properties:
- Category: Car services > charging station
- Name: Provider maxkW (number of charging points)
- lock: 2, or as high as your own level
- Address: add, if possible provide the housenumber
Professional and public
For public buildings or services such as fire departments, town halls and the like, we set the location of the name after the name, e.g., Stadhuis Antwerpen. For Organisations that have several locations, specify the location after a hyphen, after the general name of the organisation, e.g., UZ leuven - campus Gasthuisberg.
Hospital / Medical Care
The category Hospital / Medical Care currently only apply to Hospitals, First Aid Posts and other places that offer emergency aid. At the moment, no separate category is available for all other medical care. Therefore we use a provisional category like Office, Personal Care, Organization or Association, or any other category that best applies.
Shopping and Services
Rental-car facilities and returns, including at airports, should be marked as a Point with the “Rental Car” Place category. If the return location is a normal Parking Lot, then mark it with the Parking Lot category and the building with the Car Rental category.
ATMs can be found inside and outside of buildings. In Waze we only add those ATMs that are accessible to the general public. Most of the times, we can just add them as a Point Place with the primary category ATM, and the name ATM [%NameOfBank%] *. However, if they are inside a building, like a bank, supermarket, or post office, extra care should be taken:
- When the opening hours are different from the building holding the ATM:
- For example, an ATM in the hall of a bank can be accessible outside the bank's hours.
- Add a separate Point Place inside the building, with ATM as primary category.
- Make sure to add the specific opening hours
- When the opening hours are the same as the building holding the ATM:
- Add the ATM as a secondary category to the building's Place.
- Make sure to add the opening hours to the building's Place.
ATMs that have restricted use (like only accessible for account holders of a specific bank), should not be added. Any other condition, like the need to swipe a card before entering, can be written in the description field if you think it is important information for the Wazer searching for an ATM.
* Note: To avoid WME from automatically merging a separate ATM Point Place as an update to a building’s place, the ATM should be named differently than the building. Therefore, the naming convention is implemented.
Table of Categories
This table shows the categories used for the Waze Places. It shows examples, lock levels and search strings (scroll to the right of the table). Also, there is an indication to the use of a Point or an Area Place. Area Places should have a minimum area size of 500 m2 (e.g., 50m x 10m) to be visible in the client's display. See also the paragraph on how to determine Area or Point.
At the bottom of the table you can choose the language in which you want the categories to show.