Startups

Hostmaker Raises $15 Million for Short-Term Rental Management: Travel Startup Funding This Week

Hostmaker Raises $15 Million for Short-Term Rental Management: Travel Startup Funding This Week

Sean O'Neill, Skift

In the California gold rush, businesses once sold pickaxes to prospectors. In today's vacation rental gold rush, they're selling management services to the property owners. The safest bets are always adjacent services.

5 days ago

Travel Companies Start Lending Consumers Money to Book Trips

Travel Companies Start Lending Consumers Money to Book Trips

Sean O'Neill, Skift

Companies ought to carry out adequate checks on the ability of borrowers to repay travel loans on time. Otherwise, a surprise disruption such as an Icelandic volcano or an economic downturn could prompt defaults.

1 week ago

Czech Website Creates Itineraries From Low-Cost and Legacy Carriers

Czech Website Creates Itineraries From Low-Cost and Legacy Carriers

Sean O'Neill, Skift

The conventional wisdom is that major online travel agencies make it impossible for their smaller counterparts to break through. Kiwi.com is challenging that thesis, though it is very much early days.

2 weeks ago

Airbnb Rival Xiaozhu Raises $120 Million: Travel Startup Funding This Week

Airbnb Rival Xiaozhu Raises $120 Million: Travel Startup Funding This Week

Sean O'Neill, Skift

The moneyed set looked East this week as China had its second travel unicorn, Xiaozhu, receive a billion-dollar valuation, following in the footsteps of its rival, Tujia, China's first travel unicorn. Meanwhile, Ctrip bought Trip.com

3 weeks ago

EasyJet Backs Startup WeSki in a Bet on Vacation-Package Bookings

EasyJet Backs Startup WeSki in a Bet on Vacation-Package Bookings

Michael S. Arnold, Bloomberg

WeSki, which helps groups book customized ski vacations, is getting a lift thanks to an investment from low-cost airline EasyJet. But the startup will need commercial deals from the airline or other companies to reach the peaks of success.

3 weeks ago

Tours and Activities Site GetYourGuide Secures a $75 Million Funding Round

Tours and Activities Site GetYourGuide Secures a $75 Million Funding Round

Sean O'Neill, Skift

Whoever said there's no money in tours-and-activities may want to have a chat with the folks at Battery Ventures, whose investment in GetYourGuide brings that startup's total funding to $175.5 million.

3 weeks ago

Uber Appoints Ex-Banker to New UK Chair Role to Defend Its London Business

Uber Appoints Ex-Banker to New UK Chair Role to Defend Its London Business

Giles Turner, Bloomberg

London's transport officials recently threatened to ban Uber from London, largely based on worries about user safety. The ridehailing company's new UK executive has wrangled with regulators before and will add to the company's negotiation skill.

4 weeks ago

GuestReady Raises $3 Million for Airbnb Rental Management: Travel Startup Funding This Week

GuestReady Raises $3 Million for Airbnb Rental Management: Travel Startup Funding This Week

Sean O'Neill, Skift

While venture capital funding of startups has dropped steadily since 2012, there are still ideas investors find worth funding, such as for short-term rental management, event venue marketplaces, and hotel distribution.

4 weeks ago

Airfare App Hopper Enters HotelTonight Turf With Hotel Expansion

Airfare App Hopper Enters HotelTonight Turf With Hotel Expansion

Sean O'Neill, Skift

Hopper said it is on track to process about $500 million in gross bookings — a number much larger than actual revenue — this year. Its expansion into hotel bookings would bring fatter commissions and hopefully more engagement. But the company will go up against better-funded players. All bets are off.

4 weeks ago

Tours and Activities Site Klook Secures $60 Million Round as Goldman Sachs Invests

Tours and Activities Site Klook Secures $60 Million Round as Goldman Sachs Invests

Sean O'Neill, Skift

Klook's rapid growth suggests that a growing number of Chinese and other Asian outbound travelers want to travel independently, instead of in groups, and thus book their activities a la carte. That portends a sea change in the travel industry.

4 weeks ago

TourRadar Raises $10 Million as Solo Female Travelers Turn to Tour Bookings

TourRadar Raises $10 Million as Solo Female Travelers Turn to Tour Bookings

Sean O'Neill, Skift

Group hikes, river cruises, and other multi-day tours are still primarily booked offline through travel agents or direct with the operators. But future bookings of these tours will likely be digital despite the complexity. It's a tough sector, and TourRadar hopes to be well-positioned as the trend gains ground.

4 weeks ago

Expedia Affiliate Network and Hotels.com Hop on Travel Startups Incubator Trend

Expedia Affiliate Network and Hotels.com Hop on Travel Startups Incubator Trend

Sean O'Neill, Skift

Another day, another support system for travel startups. Given all these incubators and accelerators, travel startups must be enjoying a golden age of innovation and profitability. Right?

1 month ago