How to Enable Waze Voice Commands

Waze's hands-free mode can make your drive safer and easier to manage

Waze voice commands app icon

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Many states have enacted laws against using your cellphone while driving; the specifics vary, but most states ban texting completely and many ban holding the device while you talk. But we all know how handy navigation apps, like the popular Google-owned Waze, can be. So how do you use Waze safely as a driver?

You enable voice commands!

"OK Waze!" How do we get started? There are three ways to use voice commands in Waze and we'll show you how to use them all.

Regardless of the method you're going to use, you'll need to grant Waze access to your microphone first.

  • On an iOS device go to Settings > Waze > and toggle Microphone on.
  • On an Android device go to Settings > App & notifications > App permissions > Microphone and grant permission.

You'll also need to grant microphone access in the Waze app through Settings > Sound & Voice > Talk to Waze > "Listen for OK Waze" toggle should be on.

Turning on "OK Waze"

You can also quickly toggle on the "OK Waze" option by clicking on the microphone icon on the map view of the Waze app.

Waze voice command map microphone icon

Now Waze is ready to accept voice commands, keeping your focus on the road. Here are your three options for using Waze voice commands:

Say "OK Waze!"

When Waze is running in the forefront of your device you can get the app's attention with the phrase "OK Waze" and then give a voice command. This is the truly hands-free option, but requires the app to be up and running on your screen.

Tap the Waze Map With Three Fingers

Tapping on the Waze map with three fingers will alert the app to listen for a voice command.

Tap the Microphone

Waze has a red microphone icon to the right side of the "Where to?" search bar. This will allow you to speak a potential destination or give a voice command.

Waze Voice Command Phrases

Any of the above three methods will alert Waze to listen up for direction from you. However, the app will be expecting specific phrases to complete actions at different points in your trip. Most actions have a couple of ways to say them, so you don't have to memorize it all, but you should take note so you know what Waze is expecting in your voice commands. After you've initiated a voice command by one of the methods above, here's what you can say to have Waze help you:

Initiating a Drive

  • Navigate Home = "Home" "Go home" or "Take me home"
  • Navigate to Work = "Work" or "Drive to Work"
  • Navigate to an address = "Take me to (street) (number) (city)" or "Navigate to (street) (number) (city)
  • Navigate to a place = "Take me to (prominent destination)"
  • Navigate to a category = "Gas Station" or "Find me a (gas station, rest stop, etc.)"

During a Drive

  • Ask Waze for your next turn = "What's my next turn?" or "Next turn"
  • Ask Waze for your estimated arrival time = "When will I get there"
  • Ask Waze for alternate routes = "Show me alternate routes"

Reporting

  • General report = "Report" or "I want to report"
  • Report traffic = "Report traffic jam" or "Report heavy traffic" or "Report moderate traffic"
  • Report Police = "Report police"
  • Report crash = "Report accident" or "Report major accident"
  • Report hazard = "Report hazard/flood/construction/pothole/vehicle stopped/animal/missing sign/fog/hail/flood/ice/snow"
  • Report camera = "Report camera"

Adjusting App Settings

  • Sound off/on = "Sound off" or "Mute" or "Sound on"
  • Close app = "Close app"
  • Stop navigation = "Stop navigation"
  • Ask for help/support = "Help"

Knowing the right phrases will make Waze voice commands a breeze, keeping your eyes on the road as you help other drivers by making reports.