Whether you're ready for it or not, a lot of people are planning to travel this summer for the first time in over a year. Even if you're taking a socially distanced vacation, it's essential to keep up with the latest local guidelines and restrictions for wherever you're headed. Google is getting prepared for the summer rush with some new trip-planning tools for its search results.
When looking up travel information, Google now displays COVID-19 alerts alongside available flights and hotels. This new card shows if a region requires quarantining upon arrival or proof of vaccinations. Each location supports email alerts so that you can stay up to date on guidelines. Google also directly links to the source of these restrictions, so you can verify and view more information as required. It's another step taken by the search engine to help provide extra data to potential travelers after adding health and safety info to hotel listings last fall.
On a more positive note, Google is also introducing an "Explore" tab to its dedicated travel site to help plan out your next vacation. Explore has previously been a part of Flights, but the service has been redesigned and expanded to highlight hotels, popular tourist attractions, and even the best time of year to visit. Each listing also shows COVID trends and travel advisories in the area, along with the percentage of operating flights.
Finally, Google hasn't forgotten about that epic road trip you've been planning since last year. When using Maps on a desktop browser, suggested stops like hotels, parks, and campgrounds will appear along your route. While you can't use this feature from a phone, you can send it to the app when you're ready to hit the road.
All of Google's new travel tools are available starting today. If you're fully vaccinated and ready to enjoy a summer trip safely, this is a great way to start planning.