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Google expands booking features for travelers with price tracking and deals
We are a week and a half away from Christmas, but it’s still not too late to fly away for the holidays — it’ll just cost a pretty penny to do so. If you’re okay with that, Google announced on its blog that it updated its suite of travel applications and services to feature price tracking and deals.
Starting with Google Flights, the search giant is leveraging its machine learning chops to take a look at historical price data to let you when is the best time to book a flight. Once you let Google Flights know where you want to go, you can choose to have it send you tips like “prices won’t drop further” or “prices are less than normal.” That way, you can be better informed as to whether you should book your flight now or wait a bit longer.
Moving right along, Google’s hotel search results offer similar information. Because you’re dealing with hotels, Google lets you know if rates for a specific room are higher or if the surrounding area is busier due to a local event. That way, you can better plan when to make a hotel room reservation, with folks having the option to receive email alerts whenever prices fluctuate.
Finally, the Google Trips app now features a “Discounts” section. As the name implies, the section nets you deals for things like tickets, tours, activities, and attractions. Discounts vary based on where you’re located, and the app also leverages Google’s travel-booking features, so you don’t have to tell it where you’re headed.
Google Trips, which launched last year, peruses your Gmail account to automatically organize your travel reservations into individual trips. That way, you can go into the trips to scope out places to eat and landmarks to visit. It is also available offline, in case you do not have any internet access on your phone.
Overall, the new features sound very familiar to what services like Kayak and Hopper already offer. The main difference is, since many folks are already deeply immersed in Google’s ecosystem, these are just more reasons why they shouldn’t leave that ecosystem.
The flight and hotel price tracking are currently rolling out worldwide, whereas the Discounts tab inside of the Trips app will be available in English, French, Italian, German, Spanish, and Portuguese. You can give the Google Trips app a download below if you’re interested in trying it out.