This week’s roundup of travel startups looks at companies that are helping traditional travel companies connect with travelers in new ways. It includes platforms and apps that allow bus companies to sell tickets online, airport vendors to target travelers with personalized deals, and small tour operators a peek at potential customers’ itineraries.
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>> PriceMatch is a revenue management solution for hotels that raised a $1.4 million (€1 million) seed round in November 2013. The service adjusts hotels’ room rates based on supply and demand each day. The company currently has more than 200 clients in Europe.
SkiftTake: PriceMatch is the European version of U.S. revenue management service Duetto Research. Both are scaling in their respective markets making an overlap likely over the next few years.
>> Recorrido is a platform that quickly lets bus operators in emerging economies start selling tickets online and a platform that lets travelers compare bus fares and book tickets.
SkiftTake: Bus travel is picking up worldwide and already one of most common forms of transportation in many growing countries. Providing e-commerce capabilities to small local operators will allow them to tap into a larger customer pool at a relatively low cost.
>> Winerist is a wine travel platform that serves as a guide and booking tool for travelers and a marketing and management tool for wineries. The platform allows wineries to advertise their activities and receive online bookings. It also has plans to build a central reservation system of wineries.
SkiftTake: Wine tourism is growing in popularity from Napa Valley to India suggesting that there are still opportunities for a startup to become a trustworthy voice and recommendation engine for the sector.
>> TripChi is a mobile app that serves as an airport guide providing location, time, and personality-based recommendations to travelers. It is also a targeted marketing platform for airports and airport vendors. TripChi recently reached its $10,000 fundraising goal on Indiegogo. It will use the funds to launch a public beta for up to 5 airports.
SkiftTake: Airports are a good place for TripChi to test its proposed business model of targeted and personalized deals, but gathering enough data on flyers will be the biggest hurdle to making the platform useful for flyers and lucrative for vendors.
>> Tripshare is launching as an mobile app where users can create, edit, and share trip itineraries. It wants to move the offline process of drawing up optional itineraries online. The startup’s first B2B product, planned to launch in spring 2014, will be an a “pro account” that small travel-related business can use as a tool of lead conversion and customer service.
SkiftTake: Tripshare has a chance at making money if it attracts enough users to give customers like tour operators and B&Bs leads that turn into customers, but it will likely take a long time for build that large of a user base.