This week’s roundup of travel startups is across the board. There is an app for smart skiing analytics, a service for customized itineraries, two apps that want to be a traveler’s local best friend, and a lodging search site with every option under the sun.
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>> Edge is a mobile app that provides skiers will real-time analytics including their speed and distance skied, the vertical change of slopes, and resort information. As its user base grows, Edge plans to include real-time mountain features like lift wait times and heat maps for crowds. The app also plans to provide resorts with analytics on how their guests are using the mountain. The iOS version is slated to launch this winter.
SkiftTake: The ski industry is only just starting to retrieve the attention from the tech world that it deserves. There are big opportunities for early movers to improve skiers’ experiences and resorts’ operations.
>> The Trip Trotter creates custom-built self-guided itineraries for travelers based on their interests including museums, food, or volunteer activities. The Trip Trotter package will find flights and hotels, reserve restaurants, and provide a day-by-day itinerary for users. The startup also sells Trotter Tools, practical guides with information including country facts, local customs, and other logistics.
SkiftTake: Trip Trotter is a relatively low-cost option for a traveler who wants someone else do the research legwork for them. It will take time to build a customer base, which will be aided by referrals, and scaling will need to be quick if a demand for truly customized guides grows quickly.
>> What Now?! is an iOS app that suggests activities and restaurants based on a user’s location. The suggestions will vary based on the time of day, weather, and the users’ search preferences. Users can access all activity information and directions while connected to Wi-Fi and then download data to use the map and itinerary offline.
SkiftTake: WhatNow received a wave of publicity and praise at recent TechCrunch and PhoCusWright events. Its pending launch in London will be well-watched, but it will still take time for the app to develop the breadth of information it needs to provide users with worldwide content.
>> AllTheRooms is a comprehensive metasearch engine that plans to aggregates hotel options and deals from traditional online booking websites as well as hostels, peer-to-peer rentals, and free lodging. The company launched in October 2013 and is in a public beta.
SkiftTake: The concept to include every conceivable lodging option on a single site is a smart idea, but the execution and user experience is likely to be less impressive than those found on more focused search websites.
>> Trip38 is a mobile app that serves as a local concierge once a traveler arrives in a destination. Users first forward all flight tickets and hotel reservations to the company, download the app to access their mobile itinerary and destination logistics, and find offline content on the move.
SkiftTake: Trip38 aims to be a local friend for travelers in a new destination. Its test will be whether basic travel information is quick and accurate and recommendations are original and personal.
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Photo credit: Edge is a mobile app that provide analytics for skiers, real-time navigation and resort information. EdgeMobile.co