Like many other businesses this year, Google-owned Waze is suffering as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Due to declining ad revenues, Waze is laying off a portion of its staff and closing some offices.

Out of the company’s 555 employees, The Verge reports that 30 will be let go. Along with letting go of some of its staff, Waze is also shutting down some offices in Asia-Pacific and Latin American regions in an effort to “refocus” on other markets such as the US, UK, Mexico, Canada, and others. The closed offices include Malaysia, Singapore, Colombia, Chile, and Argentina. The employees let go will be able to search for opportunities within Google. They’ll also retain severance and bonuses through early 2021.

In his email, Waze’s CEO explains that these actions are due in part to the COVID-19 pandemic. Part of Waze’s revenue comes from advertising and, as a result of shelter-in-place orders around the world, fewer people are on the roads. In fact, Waze reported a 60% drop in miles driven back in March. Apparently, those numbers dropped even lower when things hit their worst, but in the time since, driving levels have returned to pre-COVID levels.

Letting Wazers go is an extremely painful process for all of us. I want to make it clear that these reductions are being made due to the constraints created by the pandemic and to support investments in our focus areas, and not because of anyone’s actions or performance.

More on Waze:

FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links. More.

Check out 9to5Google on YouTube for more news:

You’re reading 9to5Google — experts who break news about Google and its surrounding ecosystem, day after day. Be sure to check out our homepage for all the latest news, and follow 9to5Google on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to stay in the loop. Don’t know where to start? Check out our exclusive stories, reviews, how-tos, and subscribe to our YouTube channel

About the Author

Ben Schoon

Ben is a writer and video producer for 9to5Google.

Find him on Twitter @NexusBen. Send tips to or encrypted to