The new Google Flights is now the best Google Flights…
Google has a knack for making things that work really well. After acquiring some of the most powerful airline software, the company built Google Flights, which instantly became the best way to search and book flights. There were some brilliant features which instantly made it more user friendly and deal savvy than others. But then they went and tried to make it pretty. It was so disappointing, we wrote about how to quickly “run away” and go back to the old version. It now appears that the old version is fading away, but that’s finally ok – because the new one is mint.
The old Google Flights made tracking prices really easy, but keeping up with your tracked prices was a bit of a fidget. The new Google Flights puts your tracked prices right there in front of you when you navigate to the website. In addition you’ll instantly find popular destinations, a flexible map explorer, helpful insights to unlock better deals and a filter for carry on baggage needs. Plus, you’ll find all the same good ole’ functionality of the original version – like searching from up to five departure places to up to five destinations at once. More on that…
We’ve said it once – we’ll say it again. Without a doubt the best way to save on plane tickets is to set free price trackers. If a flash sale comes online, you’ll know in time and these days thats crucial because the best deals only last mere hours! The new Google Flights once again allows you to track an unlimited amount of flights with ease. In fact, prices you’re already tracking now pop up on the home page which makes it far easier to keep track! Simply search for a flight and you’ll see the new track prices button directly under the best search results. Use it – and use it often, even if just to learn how prices work. You’ll even get helpful emails with any changes.
Travel booking is not always a surgical transaction where you know exactly what you want or where you’re going on exact dates. Sometimes you just want to dream a little bit, gain an idea of what your options are or see if you’d be better off going in another month. The improved “Explore Destinations” tool on the homepage is your one stop shop. Simply click “Explore Destinations” and you’ll find yourself immersed in prices and options all over the world without having to enter any search details or destinations. You’ll instantly see options and prices to countless great places and can play with dates to see how prices change.
Airlines have made it much harder than it should be to tell what’s included with your ticket and more importantly, what’s not. Some “basic economy” tickets restrict passengers from bringing full sized carry on bags or anything larger than a small backpack and now Google Flights has a filter to help passengers avoid these prohibitive and borderline deceptive prices – if they need a bag or overhead bin space. You can now instantly filter out the “jaw dropping” prices you might not actually be able to use and you’ll also see other restrictions, like boarding last.
Who needs travel bloggers? Google is using machine learning and artificial intelligence to make helpful hints, assumptions and tips about your airfare needs. Google Flights will now tip you off if a nearby airport, or similar date is cheaper via the “Flight Insights” panel. It also now shows you price graphs for similar trips to give you a feel of what they usually cost. Perhaps most exciting to aspirational travelers, “Flight Insights” now even tells you if you might be better off in premium economy, business or first with a price quote. First class can be just $20 more than economy on short flights, but the perks are worth far more.