Immediately after the acquisition it was pretty clear that eventually this product will be integrated into the Google search functionality, the search results had already started showing the flight data but now Google has gone a step further and launched a full fledged search functionality (although currently they are only supporting U.S. and plan to expand to its footprint in the future.
Here is my take on the functionality:
- Interface: Google as it is, is known for its simplified interfaces to make things easier for people. Full marks to Google for that. They have integrated many of the ITA search filters and made the look and feel pretty clean.
- Functionality: The integrated the Map feature on the search page itself which makes it easier to graphically look for the city pairs you want to try out, the feature is pretty similar to Kayak Explore but is much more smoother and user friendly. The best thing i liked was that the results were displayed instantaneously which has never been the case with any of the other meta-search engines.
- Filters: The price calendar and the Price-Duration slider filter are cool features which although are a standard on some other search engines too have been done well to fit in with the results. Plus they work pretty real time. The other filters like the airline/alliance, number of stops, timings and duration are pretty much industry standard.