Planning A Trip? Google's New Travel Feature Will Help You Save $$ & Time

The last time I tried to plan a trip, I ended up with 25 open tabs on my computer (hotel, airfare, sightseeing locations — the works) and one big headache. Google is hoping to eliminate all that with Destinations on Google.

Destinations on Google, available today through Google search on mobile browsers and on the Google app for iOS and Android, works like a one-stop travel planning app. You can use it at any point in your planning process, but we like the idea of using its suggestions at the very beginning, when you're just deciding where to go and what your itinerary will be.

Within the platform, you can search destinations by date, price, number of travelers, and even interest — whether you're looking for a spot that's known for its beaches (Ibiza), hiking (the Amalfi Coast), or architecture (Amsterdam). If you're on a mobile browser, just type a location followed by the word "destination" or "vacation" to summon its smarts.

You can also click on any of the 201 cities programmed into Destinations to virtually explore a location. You'll see price estimates tailored to the number of travelers and your hotel preferences, advice on the best time of year to visit, top sites to see, and (my favorite feature) suggested itineraries.

These itineraries are broken down by day — if you have only one day in Florence, Italy, you'll know which sites you shouldn't miss — and also theme, with ideas for those who are traveling with kids or looking to explore specialty art museums or the markets in Bangkok.

When you're ready to make your trip a reality, you can use Destinations on Google to find the cheapest day to fly and to book your hotel and airfare.

Essentially, the platform helps you become your own best travel agent: It makes it easier to find the best prices without spending hours sorting through information from 20 different sites. While there are definitely improvements to be made moving forward (we'd like to be able to access the same travel planning experience from our desktop, not just our phone), Destinations on Google is coming at the perfect time to start turning those yoga retreat dreams in India into reality.

And, for those of us who won't be able to take a trip anytime soon, at least we can still go on an African safari via Street View.

Check out the video below for a quick tour of Destinations:
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