O’leary has apparently spilled the news that Google is working on an airfare comparison site to the Sunday Independent. With a bigger mouth than anyone at Google, he described Mountain View’s intentions to build a price shopping engine for airline tickets similar to the services the likes of Skyscanner provide.
Google, as always, has the upper hand on those comparison sites as it can act independently from the airlines it will list. Existing sites often enter into marketing agreements with airline partners in order to increase revenue. Google will only seek the data and use its standard ads on the basis that they are Google and they are basically king of the internet.
So O’Leary and Ryanair are in, sharing its ticket pricing with Google willingly. It’s unclear as to how this will actually work, whether it will display prices to a user who Googles for a certain price or airline or whether this will be built into Google now which is built into all Android devices providing up to date information on travel, weather and anything you tell it you want.
I’m sure we will find out soon… What do you think? How will this affect airlines? Will higher levels of transparency when it comes to prices help or hinder? This could start the passenger experience off smoothly for the customer. Let me know your thoughts.