Google: Travel Planning

April 22, 2019

Google wants to become the one stop shop for most information needs which generate advertising revenue. Google can already track flight information, has an incredibly accurate map system, and can track down hotel and tourist sight locations. Google now wants to help people book their travel plans and earn profit from the travel industry. PYMNTS shares the news about Google’s new travel endeavors in the article, “Google Debuts Travel Bookings Feature.” Google’s new endeavor is a travel insight tool.

Google’s new travel insight tool helps people decide where to visit for vacation, including information on trending vacation destinations. Other new features include a Google Flights that allows users to search for travel destinations based on budget. At first glance, Google Flights appears to be another flight search engine like Priceline, Travelocity, Expedia, and Orbitz. Google Flights is more intuitive than a regular travel tool and offers more interaction along with price comparisons:

“Google enables users to explore the world map on Google Flights to see where you can fly on the cheap. If you live in, say, San Francisco and want to spend under $150 on flight, you search by setting a price limit and seeing only the destinations that will be in your price range to fly. For users who have decided on where they want to travel and are starting to search for flights, Google will provide price insight for most trips, which was previously only available for holiday dates. It shows whether the price of the flight is high, typical or cheap compared to what the airline typically charges. Google will also alert you if the price won’t decline more or if it will increase soon.”

And hotels? Why not? Using the new “Deals” feature, users can search and find hotels that offer cheaper rates for a specific hotel or area. Hotel review pages have also expanded with machine learning to include more photos and reviews.

Google Flights is an interesting intuitive tool, especially for the budget traveler. Other travel Web sites offer the same service, but you have to scour to find the deals and conduct numerous searches at once. Google makes it easy for advertisers? For users? Not an issue.

Whitney Grace, April 23, 2019

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