British Airways has quietly started testing a new map-based trip planning system this week giving users the ability to search for destinations based on holiday types.
The World Explorer product sits on a beta URL within BA.com, uses Google Maps for the interface and is the result of work carried out between BA and Adobe for their Flex web system.
Similar to the Amadeus Affinity Shopper project created in late-2009 and since adopted by Lufthansa, World Explorer allows users to discover routes on the BA network based on whether the destination is recommended for different holidays, including romantic, beach, culture, nightlife, food and family.
Users can select a single or combination of types and results are shown on the map.
Routes can also be toggled by length of flying time and number of stopovers. As well as showing where flight connections are required, BA's codeshare and OneWorld routes are also included in the system.
Once a destination is selected, a pop-up content box appears with more information including a brief overview of things to do, events and suggested other cities. Live fare prices are also included in the information with a link back to the BA booking engine to secure flights.
The system is still in its early stages and more content will be added to the destination pages over time. Photography used in the project was gathered from BA staff through a competition running on the company's intranet.