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This week’s roundup of early-stage travel startups looks at a range of different markets in need of innovation.
Several are just for fun whether it be finding partiers in new cities or remembering the name of a back alley restaurant.; while another is looking to fundamentally shift the way the travel industry connects and collaborates online. All of them are working to make travel smarter, easier, and ultimately, more enjoyable.
If you know of any early-stage travel startups that you’re either involved with or have seen on the web, drop us a note through our contact page or send us a tweet at @skiftnews.
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3BaysOver, at its most basic level, is a LinkedIn for the travel industry that is looking to take the business and communication infrastructure running the travel industry online. The online marketplace allows companies to create profiles to promote services, connect with potential buyers and sellers, and form specific industry groups. The site is currently in beta and growing its user base in South America.
SkiftTake: The ideas behind 3BaysOver – that news and services relating to the travel industry are outdated – are similar to those upon which Skift was founded. The platform’s success hinges on its early adopters and the ease in which connections are created.
Libertrip is a platform that allows travelers to plan and visually build trips on an interactive timeline and map. The timeline can be shared with friends for recommendations and comments, or saved for future memories. Libertrip was founded in 2011 in France and is currently in beta.
SkiftTake: Most travelers have a desire to see the physical distance they cover on a trip, but there’s nothing to keep users on the site for more time than it takes to map out and marvel at their plans.
IntersailClub is booking platform that curates sailing trips around the world. Travelers can book a trip as a group or join an already planned trip to share the cost of the boat and crew. The startup encourages travelers to take advantage of its per-person booking formula that allow passengers to meet and travel with new friends. The site has been in beta since May 2012.
SkiftTake: Boating is poised to be the next travel experience to move online and into the sharing company with a number of startups looking to innovate the nautical booking and trip planning process.
Hangnest is an app that connects travelers looking to meet and explore a city’s nightlife with other groups of travelers. It allows users to chat in real time and offers discounts to bars where users can meet up. The app has not yet launched.
SkiftTake: Hangnest is targeting a particular type of traveler that’s looking to party, and not necessarily with locals. It’s one of a growing number of party apps that are only one horrible event away from being avoided all together.
Visit It Later, an Instapaper for places, is an app for saving places that you don’t have time to visit now, but may want to return to in the future. Users can add tags, photos, and addresses for each location. The app has everyday functionality for running errands or shopping, but is marketing itself as a travel tool that makes sure no meal or shopping experience is forgotten. The iOS app’s release is set for late March.
SkiftTake: Just like with the real Instapaper, users run the risk of collecting lots of ‘visit later’ locations without ever following through and returning to the destination.