After battling the regulatory process and competitors trying to block the deal, Google was finally able to get DoJ approval of its ITA Software acquisition earlier this year, and now today, Google has finally announced flight search, based on the technology.
When users search for flight info on Google, they will now see a "Flights" link on the left panel, which leads to Google's new Flight Search feature. The feature can also be accessed directly at google.com/flights.
Google says users will be able to quickly see which travel dates are least expensive by dragging the date selector forward or backward, or look at the bar chart to compare various dates at once. It will also let you look at destinations and filter them by airline, flight time an price.
"Flights are chosen primarily based on cost and total travel time, while covering a variety of departure times and airlines," says engineering director Kourosh Gharachorloo. "We automatically set the filters to focus on options which are reasonable in both price and duration, and you can always adjust the filters to show even more flights."
"The selection of flight results is not influenced by any paid relationships," Gharachorloo adds. "Airlines control how their flights are marketed, so as with other flight search providers, our booking links point to airline websites only. We're working to create additional opportunities for our other partners in the travel industry to participate as well."
That will make the FairSearch coalition happy right?
Google says it will be working hard to improve the number of cities and types of flights it shows. At first, users will only see a limited number of cities and results for round-trip economy-class flights.