How much is Google killing the travel game lately? If you’ve been living under a rock — so much…

Google’s ‘Area 120’ team is a group of engineers and designers who create travel products for Google and is led by Lax Poojary, the Product Manager behind Google Trips.

Google has been working to change the way we travel — from finding and booking cheap flights to planning our trip once we arrive. Touring Bird is the latest and greatest from Google and it’s awesome.

Traveling to new places is fun and exciting—but for a lot of people, planning what to do once you’re there is not. It often involves hours of research, reading dozens of travel guides and blogs across the web, sifting through reviews, compiling your own lists, comparing prices and offerings, and asking friends and family for recommendations. No one wants to waste precious vacation time on disappointing experiences or miss out on the best ones.

There has been a lot of progress in the travel industry to make the flight and accommodations booking process much better, but there is still a big user need for great tools that aggregate tours and activities across providers.

So, in late 2017, a small team of us within Area 120 (Google’s internal incubator for experimental ideas) set out to build a new tool that addresses this need, helping people find the best tours and activities across multiple providers.

How it Works

Touring Bird provides curated guides, which include free/paid things to do (historical tours, food tours, etc), top sights, and local insider tips.

To ensure our users can browse highly relevant and interesting content, we collaborate with most major travel partners and we also collect curated tips from locals and travel experts.

Sure, there are many sites out there that already provide this service, but the ability to search by your dates of travel and filter by price, time of day, and cancellation policy are what make Touring Bird unique. For example, if I’m traveling to Rome in April, Touring Bird allows me to filter by date to ensure I’m getting the best experience.

On a budget? You can set the maximum price you want to pay for your activities…

Now for the best feature…local insider tips that you probably won’t find anywhere else. Going to Rome and want to do something quirky and off the beaten path? Like perhaps a cup of coffee in a FREAKING ANCIENT RUIN. (click to enlarge photo)

The Bad

Unfortunately, Touring Bird is only available on your computer at this time — no mobile apps. In addition, the only guides available are for the following cities:

  • Amsterdam
  • Barcelona
  • Berlin
  • Boston
  • Chicago
  • Las Vegas
  • London
  • Los Angeles
  • Madrid
  • Miami
  • New Delhi
  • New York
  • Orlando
  • Paris
  • Prague
  • Rome
  • San Diego
  • San Francisco
  • Toronto
  • Washington, DC

Have you used Touring Bird for your trip? Will you? What would you like to see added?

5
Leave a Reply

avatar
3 Comment threads
2 Thread replies
2 Followers
 
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
2 Comment authors
StavrosDom Recent comment authors
  Subscribe  
newest oldest most voted
Notify of
Stavros
Guest
Stavros

Have you done any critical thinking on this or just copied PR?

“Local insider tipps” and “off the beaten path” don’t go together with GOOGLE, the dominant internet company. It’s like saying your secret insider source is the New York Times.

trackback

[…] Google Launches Incredible New Travel Planning Tool ‘Touring Bird’ by The Short Final. […]

trackback

[…] Google Launches Incredible New Travel Planning Tool ‘Touring Bird’ by The Short Final. […]