startups
1 week ago
 

Six Israel-grown travel tech startups set to take off

This is a viewpoint from Oren Todoros, founder and CEO at BigIntro.

With a population of just over eight million people and more than 7,000 startups Israel is often compared to the vibrancy of Silicon Valley.

The Israeli tech ecosystem has already delivered unicorns such as Waze, MobilEye, Wix and is now setting its sights on yet another industry that’s ripe for disruption, travel tech.

There are now an estimated 300 travel tech start-ups in Israel which people can use to help them navigate their way to pretty much any a destination.

Israel’s travel tech scene also provides solutions for booking cheap hotel rooms, reserving a table at a gourmet restaurant, booking a ski trip, or preparing and sharing an entire trip itinerary.

Here’s a roundup of the six of the most impressive travel oriented startups to keep a close eye on.

Tripalista

Launched in June 2017, Tripalista (startup pitch here) is a self-funded social travel platform, that enables passionate travelers to share their stories with others, and display it in a simple and beautiful way.

Users can create and share interactive Google maps which display content-rich routes and itineraries, alongside their transportation, stories, reviews and photos, syncing with the map as the user adds the places they’ve visited.

In an ocean of blogs, reviews and forums, there’s a growing sense of information overload, travelers seek inspiration from real people:

Friends and social media. Tripalista provides an easy way for users to explore trips from friends and real travelers in the blink of an eye, filtering and searching trips to find people who share the same interests.

Millennials are most likely to find travel inspiration via word of mouth, and social media.

Curated stories from travel guides or bloggers give a very narrow point of view, at the same time the main players of social travel today provide only partial solutions, forcing users to visit multiple  platforms and scatter their data.

BookingDirection

Launched in 2015, BookingDirection is an add-on for hotel websites that increases direct bookings by double digit percentages, saves on commission payouts to OTAs and generates thousands of dollars in net revenue per hotel per month.

Simply put, it uses price comparison widgets, callout messages, and ecommerce tactics to create an ‘OTA like’ experience on the hotel’s website.

Gooster

Gooster offers hotels a digital concierge service, giving their guests an unforgettable urban experience, instantly via chat.

Originally founded as a B2C service, the team decided to pivot after getting a lot of interest in their service from hotels and other travel related companies.

Its target audience are boutique hotels, three-to-four star hotels and even youth hostels, that currently don’t have a physical concierge service. At a later stage, it plans on targeting bigger hotel chains, as well as airlines and online travel agencies.

Pruvo

Hotel prices tend to change after reservations are made, regardless of how much time and effort you put into finding the best deal, most likely, your reservation will experience a price drop after you’ve confirmed it.

Launched in 2016, Pruvo is an automatic online service, that takes an existing hotel reservation from any website, hotel or travel agency, tracks its price 24/7 and alerts the user once there is a better deal for the exact room within the same dates the user has already booked.

Pruvo is targeting travelers worldwide who have free cancellation hotel reservations and would like to save up to 67% on their hotel bookings.

SeeVoov

SeeVoov offers a novel trip planning experience based on video watching.

Using video tagging technology it developed, SeeVoov creates one of a kind location-based videos and images database that feeds the various consumer products we offer.

SeeVoov technology is based on an intelligent machine learning system that automatically tags videos based on image analysis (Deep Learning).

The system searches the web for relevant videos based on specific rules (Crawler).

Those videos are then entered into the company algorithm that automatically identifies the locations shown on videos, collects travelers’ reviews, pictures, basic information, and exact location and stores the data in the company’s database.

TravelX

Finding your way around in an unfamiliar town or country can be very challenging and frustrating.

TravelX, (currently in closed beta), helps you navigate the world around you while enriching your experience, with simple directions given by your own personalized guide, making sure that you can get around easily to all your desired destinations during your trip.

Augmented reality (AR) technology is revolutionizing the traveler’s experience by making the planning journey much more seamless, interactive, and simple.

Speak and interact naturally with your personalized guide, and let them guide you to any destination, as well as points of interest along the way.

With more than 1.6 million global landmarks, The TravelX AR guide saves you precious time by eliminating the need to plan your trip and look at maps.

Time will tell if these tech travel ventures, or perhaps others that haven’t been mentioned yet, will eventually reach ‘unicorn’ status. But one thing’s for sure – the Israeli startups ecosystem will continue to grow, thrive and disrupt in every possible industry whether it’s water, finance, health or travel.

This is a viewpoint by Oren Todoros, founder and CEO of BigIntro. The views expressed are the views and opinions of the author and do not reflect or represent the views of his employer, tnooz, its writers or partners.

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Viewpoints

About the Writer :: Viewpoints

A founding principle of tnooz was a diversity of viewpoints from across the spectrum. Viewpoints are articles by guest contributors from around the travel and hospitality industries.

 

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  1. Dov Hoch

    JettaPlus – is another promising Israeli travel, start-up shepherded by a former Chairman of EL-Al Airlines. It is an online market place for unused, transferable flight tickets: Customer-2-Customer.

    After a successful localized Israeli trial with ticket discounts of 30%, they are now launching platforms to broker sales of un-used tickets from ten U.S. and European low cost carriers.

    JettaPlus are also going to offer interest-free, installment payments for tickets purchased with credit cards. 2-12 installment payments is common in Israel and can become a key buying factor in the travel space for occasional large vacation purchases.

    Full disclosure: I met Jetta-Plus’s CEO and CTO this week and like them a lot. I’d be happy to facilitate introductions for low-cost carriers who would like to refer customers (e.g. who can’t use their tickets because they are sick). Its a nice loyalty gesture to customers and off-loads the relationship managment from carrier customer support teams to JettaPlus

    Dov Hoch – Clarity Advisors – we bring Israeli companies into the U.S. Market

     
  2. Ardon Wesly

    About a week ago I thought being featured would be one of the greatest things for our startup, and now seeing us featured here, is very exciting! Thanks Tnooz and Oren

     
  3. Oz Har Adir

    Great list, I think we can add few that have some more traction:
    Fornova -> rate tracking for hoterliers (and OTA’s…)
    RoomerTravel & Cancelon -> P2P booking marketplaces
    Splitty Travel -> Split queries for hotel rate savings

    And the fact that Amadeus, Agoda and now Booking.com have R&D centers in Israel will improve the likelihood that better travel startups will emerge in the next years from Israel.

     
 
 

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