REDMOND, Wash., July 17 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- MSN(R) and Farecast.com, the airfare prediction Web site, announced an agreement today in which MSN will offer its users free airfare predictions and planning tools on the MSN Travel Channel. The addition of Farecast's innovative technology and planning tools on MSN Travel will empower its millions of monthly users to make more informed decisions when planning and shopping for travel. (Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20000822/MSFTLOGO) This agreement marks the first distribution deal for Farecast to bring its unique travel technology and planning tools to a broader consumer audience. Farecast joins the existing list of premier travel content partners on MSN, including Expedia, Frommer's and Travel+Leisure. "We are thrilled to partner with MSN," said Hugh Crean, president and chief executive officer of Farecast. "This agreement is further validation of the value of Farecast's predictive technology to help people make smarter buying decisions and be more empowered when shopping for travel. MSN is committed to delivering innovative content to its loyal customers, and we look forward to being a part of its growing travel channel." In addition to free airfare predictions, MSN Travel users will be able to access Farecast's unique travel planning tools. With Farecast, MSN customers will be able to answer many trip-planning decisions, such as when and where they should travel, where they can afford to travel on their budget, and the best airfare deals from their home airport. "Farecast is changing the way consumers shop for airfare by helping them answer the difficult question, 'Should I buy now or wait?' when shopping for an airfare," said Jeff Dossett, executive producer and general manager at MSN. "Integrating Farecast's unique airfare predictions and tools is part of our overall strategy to build out a rich set of innovative and differentiated content and services in travel and across all channels on the MSN media network." Farecast.com is the only travel Web site that uses a database of over 175 billion airfares to help consumers know when to buy and when they have found a good deal when shopping for travel. In a recent audit, Navigant Consulting Inc. confirmed that Farecast's predictions are 74.5 percent accurate, and travelers purchasing two tickets could save an average of $55 by using Farecast's predictions. Know When to Buy With Farecast Predictions Unlike any other travel Web site, Farecast.com saves online travel shoppers money with an airfare prediction for their specific trip. The company's patented airfare prediction tool shows whether the lowest fares for their trip are rising or dropping. Farecast.com also provides expected price movements, historical prices and buying tips when customers search for flights. Those wanting to learn more about the proprietary airfare prediction tool should visit the Our Technology page of Farecast.com. About Farecast, Inc. Farecast.com is the first and only airfare prediction website. Farecast.com helps airfare shoppers across the country save money by answering the question: should you buy now or wait? In addition to being the first to provide airfare predictions, Farecast.com offers industry leading travel planning tools and deals based on real science, not marketing. Farecast.com was recognized as one of Web 2.0's "Best Travel Sites," one of PC World's 20 Most Innovative Products, "Best of What's New" by Popular Science, one of TIME Magazine's "50 Coolest Websites" and one of the "Best Trip Planning Tools" by Business Week readers. The company is located in Seattle, Washington, and is funded by Sutter Hill Ventures, Greylock Partners, Madrona Venture Group, WRF Capital and PAR Capital Management. To get a free airfare prediction from your city, or to learn more visit http://www.farecast.com. About MSN and Windows Live MSN attracts more than 465 million unique users worldwide per month. With localized versions available globally in 42 markets and 21 languages, MSN is a world leader in delivering compelling programmed content experiences to consumers and online advertising opportunities to businesses worldwide. Windows Live(TM), a new set of personal Internet services and software, is designed to bring together in one place all the relationships, information and interests people care about most, with enhanced safety and security features across their PC, devices and the Web. MSN and Windows Live will be offered alongside each other as complementary services. Some Windows Live services entered an early beta phase on Nov. 1, 2005; these and future beta updates can be found at http://ideas.live.com. Windows Live is available at http://www.live.com. MSN is located on the Web at http://www.msn.com. About Microsoft Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.
SOURCE Microsoft Corp.