Kayak wants to inspire wanderlust from your desk with a photo-based app

Data suggests many travelers plan their getaway on their lunch break — so Kayak is launching a way to dream about that escape while in the middle of that 9-to-5 workday a bit more discreetly. Kayak, the travel-booking platform, recently launched Desktop Escape, a program that turns your desktop into a travel vista, complete with booking links to actually go there.

Kayak says the web platform sees a search spike around 11 a.m. to noon while many are on a lunch break — a trend that inspired the company to launch Desktop Escape. With options for both MacOS and Windows, Desktop Escape turns the desktop background into a slideshow featuring over 90 popular travel destinations, offering a change of scenery from inside the office cubicle.

The images largely come from Kayak’s list of top 2018 destinations, a list generated based on search data from the platform. Those destinations include the locations with the biggest travel increases and the most-searched, along with lists by category such as beaches and budget-friendly.

Desktop Escape isn’t just about free desktop backgrounds though. A small icon lists Kayak’s best flight costs from a selected home airport. The app also offers easy access to that location’s current weather, in case you are watching snowflake flurries outside that office window and need a warm destination.

The Desktop Escape app also houses travel tips. Clicking on the “Escape” icon will take users to the full Kayak platform for additional resources, including car rentals, cruises, and vacation packages.

Kayak points to a recent study that suggests that 40 percent of millennial determine where to travel based on “Instagrammability.” That data suggests that seeing some of the best views from that location is a good way to determine where to head next. The same study listed the availability of alcohol as the second most popular reason to choose a destination, followed by personal development.

Desktop Escape is similar to @Work, the travel app that Kayak launched in 2017. The app disguises the Kayak platform as a spreadsheet so that, if you happen to plan your next getaway at your desk, a glance at your screen makes it look like you are actually working.

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