For a major part of the public, “Book on Google” remained an unknown tool until this recent announcement. The search platform Google Flights indeed announced these days that it would end its live flight booking tool, only a few months after having removed its hotel booking option last spring. Zoom in on this news, leading the web giant to its original function.
Features that are not unanimously accepted
It’s official! The American firm Google recently declared to Skift their will to end up its “Book on Google” feature, for every flight direct booking. Launched in 2015, along with the direct hotel booking feature, it looks like Google Flights will soon be discontinued. This decision will take effect by the end of the month for almost all the countries covered. In the USA, the deadline is March 30, 2023 in the USA.
Registering too few reservations, the platform will now on offer an automatic redirection towards websites and airline partners. Moreover, some medias talk about a suspected recovery of users datas. But no panic, all flights booked before these deadlines remain valid. Google is for the moment still available, and then will pass the baton to airlines and online travel agencies (OTA).
A desire to benefit everyone
As Google Flights declared, “We originally offered this functionality to give people a simpler way to buy their tickets and to help our partner airlines and OTAs receive more bookings. However, we’ve found over time that people actually want to book directly on partner websites. We always strive to meet user preferences whenever possible.”
We are a technology provider, many people search on our search engine for travel information, and we want to connect them with the players whose business it is.Google spokesman
To do this, the tool aimed to save time by directly pre-filling the user’s personal data. Even bank details if they were already registered. This also benefited companies and OTAs whose website was not responsive enough, and all this for free. A most commendable step was to generate more visibility to tourism professionals, despite a fear of seeing Google Flights turn into an OTA. A point denied several times by Google, presenting today a real relief for the tourism sector.