Expedia.com has introduced three features designed to streamline its use and drive demand to airlines and hotels.
Flight Recommendations, Scratchpad and Itinerary Sharing are set to bring increased demand from the US to Expedia’s hotel partners in the UK while helping customers through the travel planning process.
More than three billion flight searches performed on Expedia.com are analysed by the Flight Recommendations tool to provide answers to real-time customer search queries suggesting alternative airports, dates or time of travel.
Tapping into so-called big data, Expedia.com can make recommendations on alternative dates or airports that may be more convenient or cost-effective for travellers.
These options and fares reflect patterns that other users have booked recently, and are presented to the customer in a box above the standard search results.
Flight Recommendations is available for desktop customers in the US with global expansion expected this year.
Customers who are signed in to their Expedia.com account will also find the Scratchpad feature which stores and organises search queries for easy retrieval.
Expedia.com found that customers will search for a flight online an average of 48 times before booking a trip. Scratchpad ensures that whenever they return, they have access to previous searches.
Clicking on the Scratchpad button on the website homepage expands the search history and refreshes the data, showing the latest prices and inventory.
For travellers signed in to the Expedia.com mobile app, Scratchpad will remember those searches and save them for viewing on desktop.
Itinerary Sharing allows users to share their live itineraries with their co-workers, friends and family. Friends can have access to the same notifications as the traveller, making it easier to track flight departures, arrivals, and delays.
An updated Expedia.com app is also available for download at the Google Play Store and Apple App Store.
Expedia senior director of market management for Northern Europe, Isabelle Pinson, said: “This innovation enables our hotel and air partners to be visible to many customer segments in the way that they want to shop.
“Both Scratchpad and Flight Recommendations, currently available on our Expedia US point of sale, help travellers coming to the UK from the US save time and money.
“With the US being one of our key international markets we’re excited about these features and look forward to them rolling out more broadly in due course. Our focus with technology continues to be delivering a superior consumer travel experience that results in increased demand for our partners.”