Bing Travel to offer “innovative travel answers”

Microsoft Corp. has officially announced the consumer availability of a new search destination for travellers in Bing Travel.

Published: 05 Jun 2009

Microsoft Corp. has officially announced the consumer availability of a new search destination for travellers in Bing Travel.

Bing Travel is part of Bing, Microsoft’s new decision engine and consumer brand.

Bing Travel ( combines many of the airfare and hotel tools from Microsoft’s 2008 acquisition of Farecast with rich news and editorial content from MSN Travel.

Reducing search “time”

According to a recent survey by Bing Travel, 52 percent of potential travellers search three or more sites before booking their airfare. Forty-two percent of travellers spend between one and four weeks weighing their travel options, and 17 percent spend more than one month. Bing Travel aims to dramatically reduce the amount of time consumers spend searching for travel information by presenting comprehensive results in one place, and to help consumers make more informed decisions with tools such as Price Predictor and Rate Indicator.

Some of Bing Travel’s key features include the following:

  • Price Predictor. Bing Travel uses Farecast technology to analyse more than 175 billion airfare observations and predict whether the price of a flight is going up or down. It offers people a recommendation of “Buy Now” or “Wait”, including a confidence level and expected price increase or decrease over the next seven days.
  • Rate Indicator. How does someone know if the rate for a hotel is a deal or not? The Rate Indicator analyses historical rate data from thousands of hotels to determine whether the current price is a good deal, or not a deal at all.
  • Travel Deals. Bing Travel features up-to-the-minute flight and hotel deals for nearly 40 cities around the world.
  • Comparison Flight & Hotel Search.
  • Fare Alerts. Most airfare price drops last less than 48 hours, so people need to be ready to jump when a fare falls.
  • Original travel editorial content.
  • Deals

    The company highlighted that Bing Travel launches at a time when consumers can find significant deals on travel.

    The Fareologists at Bing Travel report that this summer -- June through August -- airfare is down 23 percent over this time last year, and similarly premium domestic U.S. hotel rates are down 16 percent on average, and as much as 33 percent in some cities. A recent survey by Bing Travel revealed that 55 percent of Americans plan to take a summer trip. Of those planning to skip a vacation this summer, 59 percent cited the recession or money woes as their chief reason.

    “We know that a summer vacation isn’t an option for everyone this year, but for those with even a modest travel budget, it will go a long way this year,” said Joel Grus, Bing Travel Fareologist. “We also encourage people to shift how they think about a summer vacation. Anyone who is creative, flexible and a little savvy can find a trip to fit almost any budget.”

    “Most people are still discovering the power and simplicity of meta-search”

    “The days of the simple online flight-booking engine are numbered”

    Read more: Search Engines

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