Tuesday, January 10, 2012
Finding Hotels with Google Maps
HotelMaps.com is a hotel finder that uses Google Maps to help you locate and book hotels near any destination.
What makes HotelFinder.com stand out from other map based hotel websites is the use of dynamic map markers to quickly show the user the price and star ratings of the recommended hotels. It is possible to search for hotels by date and location but the user can also refine the price, the star ratings and the guest ratings in their search.
The hotels found in a search are then displayed on a Google Map with markers that show the cost per night for a room in the hotel and the number of stars the hotel has. Users can quickly refine the displayed hotels with three slide controls that allow the user to refine the price and star ratings of the results.
Hipmunk, the flight planning and booking tool also has a hotel search function that includes an interesting hotspot facility.
Hipmunk allows users to search for hotels by location and date. The results of each search are shown on a Google Map, with green markers showing the cheapest rates and red the most expensive. It is also possible to sort the results by price, reviews and distance.
Hipmunk also allows users to overlay a number of heatmaps over the results. The heatmaps help the user to see which areas of their destination have high and low concentrations of restaurants, museums, bars etc.
The heatmaps are a useful tool, especially for users booking hotels in unfamiliar locations. In many ways the function improves on Google Hotel Finder's tourist spotlight feature.
When you search for a hotel with Google Hotel Finder the map tourist spotlight highlights the most popular areas for visitors to stay. Google Hotel Finder also includes a useful area search tool that allows the user to adjust the area that they are interested in staying directly on the map.