What you need to know
- Google is making it easier to filter travel searches for the most environmentally friendly options.
- Users in select countries will be able to search for train tickets directly in Search.
- Google plans to extend ticket search to more places and eventually buses.
Google continues to update its products to help users make more environmentally-friendly choices. The latest updates to Search will help expand options for eco-friendly travel as we start looking to book our holiday stays (because it's never too soon to start looking).
Google already makes it easy to search for plane tickets online, and now the company is expanding Search to enable users to find train tickets as well. When searching for trains, a familiar Search module will appear that lets you select the dates and sift through various times and prices. And with just a click, you can jump straight into the associated ticketing agency to purchase said ticket.
For now, the experience is limited to select countries, including Japan and several European countries, such as Germany, Italy, and Spain. However, as talks with rail providers continue, Google plans to expand to additional countries. And in the "near future," Google plans to expand this feature to let users find bus tickets.
In addition to expanding options for travel tickets on Search, Google is also helping users find more eco-friendly travel options when searching for plane tickets and hotel stays. A new "Emissions" option lets you filter out "low emissions" flights, and Search will show you how each flight compares with a small badge. Flights with lower emissions compared to average trips will be highlighted in green.
For hotels, it works similarly. Users can search for stays at Google's Travel site and use the new "Eco-friendly" filter. Using information from organizations such as the U.S. Green Building Council and Global Sustainable Tourism Council, Google will list eco-certified hotels to ensure that your entire trip is as green as possible.
These are just some of the latest ways that Google has improved its products for greener travel. For those who prefer to drive, Google recently expanded its eco-friendly routing, allowing users to find the most efficient routes based on the engine type. This can be particularly useful for EV owners to help them use the least amount of battery power to reach their destination.
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Derrek is a long-time Nokia and LG fanboy who loves astronomy, videography, and sci-fi movies. When he's not working, he's most likely working out or smoldering at the camera.