Google denies OTA aspirations

Google denies OTA aspirations

DUBLIN — Google says it’s not looking to become an online travel agency, even as mobile searches in the company’s travel category have shot up 40% in recent months.

According to reports from TTG, Google’s VP Product and Engineering for Travel & Shopping, Oliver Heckmann, denies Google has aspirations to join the OTA ranks. Heckmann was a featured speaker at the Phocuswright Europe conference in Ireland recently.

“We don’t have plans to become an OTA,” Heckmann told TTG. “We want to have a very good business model that works for us today.”

Destinations on Google launched in March. Though not an official OTA (rather, it partners with OTAs), Destinations on Google gives the consumer a fast and easy way to research, search for and book trips online. Bookings are made using Book on Google which streamlines credit card processing and other steps.