US: Expedia Group has introduced a number of new features as part of its Fall Release 2023, including Trip Planner, EG Labs and AI innovations, in a bid to inspire consumers for their next trip and make it easier for them to plan trips with their friends and family.
The new features will cover Expedia Group brands [namely Expedia, Vrbo and Hotels.com] and include:
Expedia Group’s new Trip Planner enables travellers to “dream, collaborate, share, like and book” trips with friends and family in one place, including their accommodations [short-term rentals / hotels etc], flights, activities, car rentals and more by accessing and saving them in a single view.
Users will be able to like and comment with friends and family, as well as share and collaborate on their favourite options and recommendations as a group, eliminating the ned to comb through a raft of emails and texts.
Available on the Expedia, Vrbo and Hotels.com apps, Trip Planner is expected to launch more new features soon.
Dynamic travel guides
Dynamic travel guides are another new innovation for Expedia Group, helping users find the best times and dates to visit a destination based on current hotel prices, weather conditions and crowd predictions.
The guides, available on the Expedia and Hotels.com apps, will also include a neighbourhood section, through which users can converse with an AI chatbot to find their ideal locale for a stay.
Flexible date search for stays
The flexible date search has been designed for users seeking a place to stay around a date, or by trip duration and time of year, rather than having a specific date in mind. Available on the Expedia, Vrbo and Hotels.com apps, it will offer guests better and more diverse options for lodging, as well as the flexibility to adapt the conditions of their trip choices.
“Real-life travel stories from popular influencers”
Available across all three apps, EG Labs is described as an innovation program that focuses on experimentation and testing out new ideas to make planning, booking and taking a trip easier than ever before. Expedia Group will use EG Labs to share cutting-edge, AI-driven innovations with travellers who can test beta products and “help shape the next frontier of travel and tech”.
Project Explorer is available as the first beta project for testing in EG Labs, and its mission is to help users curate their perfect trip with generative AI. Available on Expedia’s iOS app in the United States, users will be able to adapt their interests and budget preferences to learn more about new destinations and decide on a multi-day itinerary of places to visit and stay in.
Quick answers on amenities and properties
Consumers will be able to sift through other travellers’ reviews about the amenities of vacation rentals and hotels and receive relevant AI-generated answers based on property details and guest reviews. The tool will also be available on all three aforementioned Expedia Group apps.
Control over bookings and accounts
Expedia Group’s new features are set to make it easier to manage trips after bookings have been made. These include the option to change flights voluntarily, arrange breakfast upgrades, add to digital wallets and simplify account control by managing one’s profile, benefits, OneKeyCash and communications in one place.