Google Maps is using fast food spots to help you drive

The navigation app appears to be using local landmarks to provide more natural directions.

Kyle Hyatt Former news and features editor
Kyle Hyatt (he/him/his) hails originally from the Pacific Northwest, but has long called Los Angeles home. He's had a lifelong obsession with cars and motorcycles (both old and new).
Kyle Hyatt
Alina Bradford/CNET

When someone gives you directions using fast food restaurants as reference points, you might question what they've been smoking. Now though, Google Maps appears to be doing the same thing. If that means Google Maps is stoned, we're all in trouble.

Twitter users have been reporting that after a recent app update, Google Maps is no longer just using standard directions (like turn left, right, make a U-turn). It's now using landmarks and other points of interest to help make finding your turns just a little easier.

So far, CNET's Scott Stein has confirmed that his phone offered an instruction to turn at a White Castle while driving through the Bronx in New York, but it's unclear what other geographical areas are getting the new instructions.

The landmarks it picks out are not part of any advertising, and it's hard to know how many people will get to see these new directions. As a result, these directions could end at any time.

But if you happen to get a fast food craving after being told to make a left at a burger place, don't be surprised.