Will the Hopper App Kill Google for Travelers?

There are literally hundreds of Apps in the Android and Appstore for the travel industry. With the travel industry slowly moving towards seamless integration the trend of mobile-assisted traveloyages (hey, I have just invented a new word here!)

Apps are defining the way people are looking at future holidaying. Travelers now have the option of visiting a destination or a location before physically visiting it. When we were planning to travel to US in 2013, we had checked up the city, favorite touristy destinations much ahead through websites and blogs. Our planning was not only limited to Virtual Tourist or Lonely Planet but also the immense portability that Google Maps brings to you with its street maps and 3D imagery.

The world of travel has already moved ahead with all travel-assisting sites offering mobile Apps such as “Booking.com”, and Hotels.com for accommodation deals, as well as all major airlines releasing their mobile booking Apps. Car Rental companies were not left behind with their huge stock of automotives up for grabs through their mobile Apps. Travel forums in Lonely Planet and Travbuddy were active with tens of thousands of inquisitive travel lovers asking, researching and debating probable travel options within the community.

We can now not only book hotel and boarding accommodations and air tickets or rental cars, we stay connected at each and every moment of our vacations through apps such as Facebook and Twitter to share our photos and experiences every step of the way. Mobile apps to search for local information are available now to every globally connected user through their mobile phones and tablet PCs. ‘Everything at your fingertips’, as the adage goes.

This year, 2015, for the first time we have a Travel App making its way to the list of “Best 25 Apps” which has been released by Apple. The App is up at the 7th position in a list which also includes the such bigwigs as Timeline, HBO and Instagram. You can find it in both Apples iStore and Android Playstore. With more than 100 thousand downloads in the last 2 months, it sure is catching up!

What does Hopper do?

With a team of ex-employees of Expedia and TripAdvisor working at it for the last 6 years, the alpha launch happened last summer with invited users. This year, anyone can join in and create free accounts, check out future flight prices, book them, and also browse for travel tips and advise.

Once you log in After a couple of welcome and tips screen, over the mobile app once you start searching for a location things get pretty interesting. It provides a current low price, predicts the future prices with date ranges, along with details of flights. It also gives you the differential pricing based on dates. It shows you price expectations based on weekdays marking them with different coloured bands to differentiate between the greens and the reds. One can sort the prices based on prices, departure and arrival time, stops and flight durations.

Download Hopper if you plan to travel in the coming months. You can put a watch on the trip with subsequent reporting. You will surely not be disappointed.

The question, as the founders demand, is that “Will Hopper App kill Google for Travelers”? The answer may not be an easy one. As much as what we can see, the answer is surely ‘No’. But with years of research and development of mathematical algorithm and econometric probability theory, I have a feeling that we may have a lot of changes and new features to see in the coming months. What we see may only be the tip of the iceberg.



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