Google Maps glitch leads hundreds of tourists to wrong destination

2017-10-09 14:40 - Unathi Nkanjeni
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Picture: Twitter

Cape Town - Due to it being one of the most recommended navigation apps that gives frequent updates, getting lost while using Google Maps is usually unheard of.

However, following a Google Maps glitch, hundreds of tourists have been led to a quiet suburb in Australia instead of the requested destination, the Blue Mountains.

The Google Maps error, first spotted online by locals in 2015, has since boosted tourism to the small Australian town.

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Following this incident, according to The Telegraph, residents of the town - which is nearly a 30-minute drive from the nearest entrance to the Blue Mountains National Park - have since decided to erect a sign to direct visitors away reading: “Blue Mountains is not here (Google Maps is wrong) - you need to go to KATOOMBA.” 

According to Sydney Morning Herald, local resident Karen McLaughlin says that although she doesn’t begrudge the tourists for turning up mistakenly, there have been some less-than-desirable consequences as a result.

“People following Google Maps to Blue Mountains are usually non-English-speaking tourists, and I don't blame them at all,” she told the publication. “I feel sorry that they've come 35 kilometres out of their way and then have to go back again.”

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While the town now gets a few more visitors than it is used to, McLaughlin says one of the negative consequence of the Google Maps mess-up is that tourists sometimes need to go to the bathroom and have no public facility to use.

McLaughlin says it’s quite common for buses of people to turn into the quiet street and knock on her door, asking to use the toilet.

After numerous complaints and notifications sent to Google, it was only after the tech giant was approached by the media that the error was corrected.

If tourists search for Blue Mountains now, their pin will drop in the middle of the national park.

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