Travel technology provider Amadeus has launched a tool it claims will “reinvent” the way people search for travel.
Amadeus Affinity Shopper enables travellers to search on airline websites by their desired travel experience – rather than putting in a specific destination or price bracket.
Lufthansa will be the first airline to trial the new technology before it is rolled out to other airline partners early next year.
Amadeus is also working on travel agent versions which will go into agencies in the first quarter of 2010.
Unveiling the tool in the UK yesterday (Tuesday 17 November), Ian Wheeler, vice president, marketing and distribution, said:
“We think it’s quite a revolution in the way people will search for travel compared to the way they do today.
“We are launching with Lufthansa but the aim is to multi-brand airlines and add future content.”
Amadeus currently has a tool called Extreme Search which allows consumers of packaged travel to search for travel asking open questions such as “where can I go, and what can I do for what I want to spend?”
Affinity Shopper is the first time this technology has been available on airline websites.
One of the key differences between Extreme Search and other search engines is it allows the traveller to make a selection on the same search page, without the need to insert a destination city or a date of travel.
The tool was presented at the PhocusWright Conference in Orlando, USA earlier this week.
Amadeus vice president sales & e-commerce, Denis Lacroix, said:
“Current searching is not in line with the way people think.
“Travellers often do not know what they really want, and even if they do, they will still want to compare options and offers.”
Marcus Casey, Head of e-Commerce & Mobile at Lufthansa, said:
“Affinity Shopper gives our customers further options to use our website as a traveller playground where users can explore and determine their trip based on what they would like to do during their travel.
“Our customers are able to conduct a search for a “beach holiday in Europe based on a budget range”, or even a completely open search for a holiday for less than, for example, $700 per person.”
The tool has been released at the same time as a report by Amadeus called The Amateur-Expert Traveller, which suggests that the rise of the internet means that travellers are more knowledgeable, more adventurous and more open to technological innovation than ever before.