Google has rolled out a new mobile application that it describes as a personalized vacation planner for people too pressed for time to do it on their own. Google Trips is available for immediate download on Android and iOS-based mobile devices and can help users plan daily activities while on vacation, even when they are not connected to the Internet.
The mobile app offers a wide variety of daily plans for 200 popular destinations around the world. Travelers can use Google Trips to build personalized tours of popular attractions and historical sites in each of these cities. They can also use it to find things to do and places to eat and to make dining and other reservations. In addition, the application lets users choose from multiple day plans pre-assembled from the feedback of other travelers.
"Everyone has different interests and time constraints," Stefan Frank, product manager of the new app, said on Google's Official Blog. "No matter how popular an itinerary is, there's no one-size-fits-all solution for the perfect day or the perfect trip."
Google Trips offers a way around this by helping travelers figure out places to visit and things to do based on their specific interest and time constraints, according to Frank.
For instance, a traveler wishing to visit a specific attraction can enter that location in Google Trips to immediately get a map view of all the other attractions and things to do in the area. Users can specify how much time they have available to visit attractions and whether they want a half-day plan or a plan for an entire day.
The application then automatically plans the day for the user starting with their original destination and offering suggestions for other places to visit or things to do in the available time. A "magic wand" feature lets the user add new spots and get a new itinerary with updated information on nearby attractions.
Google Trips offers a single location for users to keep track of their flight, hotel and other reservations, organized by individual trips. The application is designed to work without the Internet so users can plan their itineraries and stay on top of their schedules even when they are offline, according to Google. Users simply have to download and save each trip to have it available even when offline
The application, according to Google, is designed to help alleviate the stress that travelers often encounter when planning a vacation or a getaway. In his blog post, Frank pointed to a recent survey by GoodThink in which 74 percent of the respondents pointed to trip planning as the most stressful aspect of a vacation. Respondents cited factors like travel uncertainty, figuring out what things to do on a trip, unfamiliarity with the location and transportation as being major contributors to stress while vacationing.
Figuring out how to squeeze everything that you want to do in a vacation within the available time can turn an enjoyable experience into a lot of work, Frank said. "We wanted to reduce the hassle and help travelers enjoy their hard-earned vacations," he said.