Google Launches Flight Search Tool

Washington Post: Google announced the launch of its new flight search tool, challenging sites such as Kayak and Orbitz.

The company acquired travel-search software maker ITA in April, following a Justice Department probe into how the merger would affect competition with other travel sites. This latest product seems to be a direct result of that acquisition.

Using Google Flight Search is easy — the service lets you search for flights based not only on date and destination, but also by price and duration of flight. Plus, an option to look at Google Flight Search should show up on the left side of any search results page for queries such as “flights from DC to San Francisco.”

Once you get your results, the service also makes it easy to see how changing travel dates will affect a ticket’s price.

The new tool lists the prices of flights to cities across the country based on your departure locale, giving you a quick glance at your options if you’re planning a trip but don’t yet have a destination in mind.

The company said it plans to add more functionality to its results in the future — right now, it only highlights flights to a limited number of cities and only displays economy-class prices.

In a blog post announcing the product, Google said its results are “not influenced by any paid relationships.” Flight results come directly from airlines, which means the service still differs from sites such as Kayak, which aggregate prices from other travel sites as well.



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