Amazon simplifies travel with launch of Destinations

Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) launched a new hotel search site dedicated to "getaway destinations" within driving distance of a user's home. Amazon Destinations, as it's being called, features hotel selections in three U.S. metro areas: Los Angeles, New York and Seattle.

Amazon has tried other initiatives in the travel space, including offering flash deals and deep discounts on hotel stays, reported TechCrunch. However, Amazon's new Destinations site increases the selection of hotels, which are handpicked by the company.

The model includes publishing hotels' rates with the goal of making travel planning for local trips easier.

"More than 40 percent of all U.S. domestic leisure trips are short-term getaways of one to three nights, and many of these trips are to nearby, drivable destinations," spokesperson Tom Cook told TechCrunch. "However, travelers often have a hard time planning local getaways. It's difficult to know where to go, the process is labor-intensive, and people often miss out on finding great places to stay."

The Destinations launch is just one in a series of moves by Amazon to expand its offerings. Last month Amazon launched Home Services, a marketplace for consumers looking for local professionals. And last summer the company entered the takeout food business with its Local program.

For more:
-See this TechCrunch article

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