New Google Features Plus Tips for Holiday Travel
If you are considering travel during the pandemic, this holiday season and beyond, you are probably doing Google searches a bit differently. Safety is high on most people’s priority list when traveling. So being able to see what features and precautions each property takes during the pandemic, is very useful information.
Google is offering just that, with health and safety information for hotels and vacation rentals. Beginning this week, when you search for a place to stay on google.com/travel and view a specific property, you may see a tip when additional health and safety precautions, like enhanced cleaning or no contact check-in, are in effect. This builds on the additional features we rolled out earlier this year in response to the pandemic, including the “Free Cancellation” Filter, which allows users to find hotels and vacation rentals with refundable rates on google.com/travel, as well as the ability to see the percentage of open hotels with availability and flights operating at the city or county level based on Google Flights and Hotels data from the previous week.
Stay Up to Date with Latest Travel Info
When you search on Google for information about hotels, flights or things to do, check to see if there’s a COVID-19 travel advisory or restriction for your destination. If there are no restrictions, you can see indicators for travel reopening, like the percentage of flights operating or hotels with availability, directly in your Search results. On google.com/travel you can also see trends for flight and hotel availability over the past six months, as well as links to local resources, like the number of COVID-19 cases in the area.
If you’re planning to visit a new city, you can use the COVID layer in Google Maps to quickly get information about COVID-19 cases in the area—so you can make more informed decisions about where to go and what to do.
Once you’re headed out on your trip, you can use Google Maps to see helpful safety alerts along the way. If you’re driving, you will get notifications about COVID-19 checkpoints and restrictions along your route, like when crossing national borders. If you plan to take public transportation, you’ll see alerts from local transit agencies, so you can quickly know if government mandates impact transit services or require you to wear a mask while riding the bus, subway, or train.