Kayak First Class Flight and Hotel Search [rating: 4/5]
Kayak.com has long been a premiere destination for travel services on the Internet. Unlike some sites, Kayak is not a travel service in itself but rather an aggregator of other services on the Internet. Kayak provides the capability to search through other offerings through one, simple interface. The Kayak First Class Flight and Hotel Search application for the iPhone brings the same great web site functionality to one great app. It is a one stop shopping experience if you’re travelling anywhere in the world.
The Kayak application is divided into nine categories: Flights, Hotels, Cars, Trips, Buzz, Airlines, Feedback, Preferences, and Help/FAQ. The core of the application are in the Flights, Hotels, Cars, Trips, and Buzz areas. Searching for a flight, hotel, or car is quick and easy through a very intuitive interface. Searches are fully featured and I easily found items that met my criteria without much fuss or hassle. Travelers, would-be travelers, and those stuck frantically looking for a flight in an airport will appreciate how quickly the interface allows you to hone in on what you’re looking for.
Also included in the application are two of Kayak.com’s more powerful features, Trips and Buzz. The Trips functionality gives the user an interface for centralizing all aspects of the their trip. Itineraries, travel plans, and notes about your trip can be set up through Kayak.com and accessed through the application. Flight delays and statuses can be also be forwarded to your phone through SMS or e-mail. The Buzz functionality provides the user with the best upcoming flight prices between two points and trending for the next 30 days. Useful information for planning a trip.
Additional application areas include the Airlines screen which lists the phone number and web site of all major airlines, the Feedback screen which allows the user to provide Kayak feedback on their application, the Preferences screen which allows you to set application preferences, a help screen in the Help/FAQ screen. If you’re not flying in or to North America, you might want to check out the Preferences screen. Kayak.com is selected as the default Kayak site and all prices are listed in US dollars. On the Preferences screen you can change the Kayak site to one of the many worldwide sites and the currency to one of the major world dollars. Booking through a local site may save you a few dollars and viewing listings in your native currency can certainly save you the hassle of working out exchange values when booking.
All in all, the Kayak First Class Flight and Hotel Search application is a well thought out and useful application. The interface is intuitive, it provides all of the functions I would expect in a travel aggregator and search application, and has a few added extras that differentiate it from other applications. The only major issue I found with the application was in the actual booking of a flight, hotel, or car. The application itself does not provide a booking interface. Instead, the user must navigate the Kayak.com web site in Safari or by calling. I like mobile Safari as well as anyone who uses an iPhone but complex forms can be a bit hard to navigate on the small iPhone screen. It seems to me that if Kayak is going to take the time to create a great app for finding and planning travel they would add booking functionality as well. This would be a welcome addition to an already great app.
The Kayak iPhone application comes in two versions; the Flight and Hotel Search free version and the First Class Flight and Hotel Search. Pay the $1.99 to receive the full version of the application. It is well worth it.
- Intuitive interface
- Powerful searching capabilities
- Trip and Buzz sections are welcome additions
The Not So Good
- Lack of in-app bookings hurts the application experience
Reviewed by: Erin Peterson
Price: $1.99 as of 11 Jan (iTunes Store)
Version reviewed: 2.1.1
Size: 4.1 MB