Why is the shortest route faster than the fastest route for foot walking?

Hello openrouteservice team,

in our tests we work with these two adresses and we search for a route by foot walking:

  • Friedrich-Engels-Straße 4, 16225 Eberswalde (13.80826445582269 52.83262368968099)
  • Breite Straße 69, 16225 Eberswalde (13.827308174850094 52.8303136123012)

For foot walking and the different preferences we get for these results:

  • recommended/fastest: distance - 1852,1 duration - 1333,5
  • shortest: distance - 1562,5, duration - 1125

Why is the shortest route faster than the fastest route for foot walking?
Which criteria are used to decide what the recommended route is?

Best regards.

Hi @Worker,

thats because it’s rather recommended than fastest and has some priority settings regarding waytypes and

really tries to avoid the Bundesstraße for the foot profile which is a primary road, as you can see by the detour before the goal point.

Also see for what roads are rather avoided:

Best regards

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Unfortunately, it’s still not clear why the fastest route takes longer than the shortest route.

As @amandus already pointed out: the recommended route is actually not the fastest one, but rather the best possible alternative which from the perspective of a pedestrian seems to be the most reasonable one (e.g. prioritizes streets with sidewalks rather ones without, etc…).

Hope this helps. Cheers!

I understand that, but the API allows querying the fastest route and this is slower than the shortest route.

I see your point now! This might be confusing indeed, however, queries with preference = fastest are internally translated into recommended. It is a legacy thing which should have been deprecated already a while ago… I’ve set up an issue for it.

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