Google is in the process of acquiring the Frommer’s travel brand from the publishing company John Wiley & Sons, Inc., in what is a further effort to beef up its Google+ business information listings service. The deal is nearly closed, according to a report from The Wall Street Journal, which also speculates that the Frommer’s brand could be merged into Google’s Zagat brand following the… → Read More
Trippy, the social travel planner which debuted last fall at TechCrunch Disrupt, is going to begin pulling in some additional revenue starting today, thanks to a newly launched feature: brand profile pages. The initial lineup includes roughly half a dozen brands such as Chase Sapphire Preferred, Thompson Hotels, Hawaii Visitors & Convention Bureau, Hilton Hotels & Resorts, Brides, Air New… → Read More
Chicago-based Georama is now launching what it calls a “map-based travel platform.” In layman’s terms, that’s a travel search service that’s entirely based on top of a map. It can either suggest places for you to go based on your interests or other factors (e.g. time of year), or, if you already have a few places in mind, you can use Georama to explore things like local attractions and… → Read More
It’s been a long time in coming. After first filing to go public in late 2010, Kayak finally came to market today debuting as a public company on NASDAQ, trading under “KYAK.” The travel bookings company has hit its fair share of bumps along the way, thanks to unsteady market conditions, erratic earnings, and a departing CFO.
All that has been washed away over the last 48 hours (at least for… → Read More
Social travel site Gogobot has been on a roll lately. Just two months ago, the company announced that it had passed 1 million registered users. Today, Gogobot announced that it now has more than 2 million users, up 100% in the past 60 days. Currently a new users signs up for the service every 15 seconds. To celebrate this milestone, the company also today announced its completely redesigned iPhone… → Read More
MobilyTrip, the mobile app and social network that lets travellers journal their trips, has raised a new round of financing: €300k from a group of angel investors, including Theo Hoffenberg, founder of the language and translation portal Reverso.net. It means that the six-person startup has now raised €500k in total.
The new funds will be used to further develop the product, including… → Read More
Last fall, ex-Googlers Jon Tirsen and Douwe Osinga launched a new mobile travel platform called Triposo, which aimed to bring a little PageRank order to an unruly ocean of travel content in service of a greater good: Giving we, the end user, more relevant, personalized travel recommendations. Because there’s already a mess of public destination and travel information in databases like Wikitravel… → Read More
Anything that helps hotels improve their customer service levels is welcome in my book. Tools to help them upsell, not quite so much.
To that end, LoungeUp, a startup that provides a platform to enable hotels to jump on the mobile app bandwagon, has announced that it’s raised a seed round of “several hundred thousand euros” from Pôle Capital and several Angels, including Nicolas Baudy… → Read More
Gogobot, the social travel site that recently passed the 1 million registered user mark, just launched an interesting redesign this week that turn the site’s homepage into more of an interactive magazine experience with a focus on photos instead of the site’s previous text-heavy design. As Gogobot’s founder Travis Katz told me earlier this week, the Gogobot team noticed that its users didn’t just… → Read More
Trippy a social travel planner for web and mobile (and former TechCrunch Disrupt participant) is launching its first iPad application today to complement its current iPhone-only offering. The app, like many focused on content discovery, looks much more amazing on the iPad, where you can browse big, beautiful photos of places you want to go. You can see the photos laid out in the now-popular… → Read More
Surf Air, a new membership-based air service providing short jaunts between California hot spots like Palo Alto, Monterey, Santa Barbara and L.A., has just closed its Series A. And look who invested: Jared Leto, noted actor/musician/entrepreneur. Leto has already launched three businesses – The Hive, The One and Only Golden Tickets, and Vyrt – so he’s no stranger to the startup scene at this… → Read More
Australian travel search FlightFox has a new take on how to surface the best airline deals, and now it has a round of angel funding and entry into top startup incubator Y Combinator, to go along with it. The company has just closed an $800,000 round of funding from YC, 500 Startups, Kevin Laws (board member at AngelList), Matt Dickinson (early investor in Ark), Mick Liubinskas (from Pollenizer)… → Read More
Today, Israeli startup Superfly, which offers a secure tool that combines worldwide flight information with personal travel preferences to help people organize and maximize the value of their travel rewards among other things, is quietly launching a shot across the bow of the industry’s giants — in this case, uber popular metasearch engine, Kayak.
That’s because the startup now has the benefit… → Read More
We’ve been covering Gogobot since it first launched in early 2010. It took the social travel discovery and advice site a little while to find its niche, but since about the middle of 2011, it’s been adding new members rapidly. Today, Gogobot is announcing that it has now surpassed the 1 million registered user mark. According to the company’s own data, a new member is signing up for service every… → Read More
Fresh on the heels of its $1 million Series A, Triptrotting, a startup that aims to connect travelers with hosts, is relaunching its website with a number of changes. In addition to improved design and functionality, the website also introduces new features which aim to better connect travelers with each other as well as with their local hosts. → Read More
Back in September, Jon Tirsen and Douwe Osinga, two ex-Googlers, unveiled their new mobile travel guide, Triposo, setting out to do for travel content what Google and PageRank did for search. The startup developed a set of algorithms to crawl and parse the Web’s biggest travel information databases (like Wikitravel and Open Street Maps), before ranking the data to determine which pieces have the… → Read More
Social travel site Gogobot is doing a little traveling of its own. Today, it’s announcing the opening of its first European headquarters, in London.
The move, says Travis Katz, the CEO and founder of the company, is being done to capitalize on the fact that the site already has nearly as many users in Europe as it does in the rest of the world: some 44 percent of people who have linked into… → Read More
As a wave of new hopefuls enter the online travel market using social media elements to stand out from the pack, two sites that focus on vacation rental accommodation, Roomorama and Lofty, are merging to scale up, and they’re picking up a $2.1 million seed round to help them along the way.
The list of new investors in Roomorama, as the merged company will be called, include names that are… → Read More
EveryLodge is a new startup that aims to at least partially fill the void left by the closure of sample sale aggregator MyNines last year. Like MyNines, EveryLodge also aggregates the ongoing flash sales from across the web for shoppers’ convenience. However, where the former focused on the fashion vertical, EveryLodge is instead focusing on aggregating the flash sales for hotel stays.
The travel industry is one vertical that seems to be seeing a lot of disruption at the moment — ranging from social media startups changing how we find and buy our journeys, to those who are re-examining how those in the business are going to make money in the future. One of the companies working in the latter space, Sojern, today announced that it has raised a round of $7.5 million.
On the heels of last week’s announcement of “social” hostel booking site InBed.me picking up a $1.2m seed round, another social travel site is launching today: Tripbirds, which lets users pick up travel recommendations from friends via other social networks, is now open for business after a private beta period that saw 4,000 sign-ups and 13 million check-ins and images collected.
Jetsetter, the exclusive travel community for globetrotters, seems to be on a roll. In recent days, the company has announced a dozen some new corporate partners, a handful of new sale formats to entice customers, and new distribution partnerships with high-profile sites like Kayak, The Economist and the vacation rental service HomeAway.
But while many think of Jetsetter as a flash sales for… → Read More
Triptrotting, a startup that connects travelers with hosts, has raised $1 million in a Series A round of funding.
The company’s website promises that users will be “not just another clueless tourist.” The idea is that when you’re traveling to new places, it’s almost always better if you have a local friend, so Triptrotting tries to connect travelers with locals at their destination. → Read More
Australian-based travel marketplace Jayride.com has lined up $400,000 AUD in seed funding for its ride-sharing service, which also aggregates transportation data. The angel funding was led by Andrey Shirben, one of the first investors in Kenshoo, a digital marketing software company. In addition to helping in the financing, Shirben will also bring his digital marketing expertise to assist the… → Read More
CruiseWise, a new online travel agency dedicated to booking cruises, is opening its doors today. The startup aims to simplify the online cruise booking process, bringing it up to par with what you find now when booking hotels or flights.
With site’s online search engine, customers can compare prices, routes, cabin choices and other options across multiple cruise lines and see the full amount… → Read More
So you’ve just landed in Pittsburgh and you don’t know anyone. If you’re like me, you hit the local Eat’n'Park and stare at people from your booth, crying while eating fries. With Tripl, however, I can meet some of the movers and shakers in the locality, network like a champ, and generally leave the hellscape that is my dark, lonely soul. Win-win.
The service has just come out of beta and is… → Read More
There are a lot of sites popping up these days trying to make travel recommendations better and more precise. Some, like Triposo, are making travel apps based on algorithms, while Trippy wants to give you social, “friendsourced” recommendations via Facebook, or rapidly growing sites like Gogobot, which provides a gamified, Yelp-like platform where you can leave reviews of destinations you visit… → Read More
Travel discounter Priceline.com is launching a new daily deals service aimed at helping users find cheap hotel rooms. (Or maybe it would be more accurate to call it a “nightly” deals service?)
Starting today, same-day offers for heavily discounted hotel rooms will become available in Priceline’s “Hotel & Rental Car Negotiator” app at 11 AM local time and can be instantly booked up until 11… → Read More