Alexa

10 Best Startups to Watch 2019

TripCreator: A one-stop itinerary creation platform for travel professionals

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TripCreator is a B2B, advanced time-saving itinerary creation platform for travel professionals, with the possibility to allow the end-customer to book his itinerary through the TripCreator Booking engine, or go as far as integrating to reservation platforms and thus, have the opportunity to automate the entire booking process from supplier to the end-customer. TripCreator is also able to allow users to create dynamic packages, where the end-customer is able to customize his itinerary in the booking process, whether he wants to add pre- and/or post nights, upgrade, buy upsell products or purchase optional items. Furthermore, TripCreator focuses on product distribution through widgets and other means, as creating itineraries is a formality while distributing them is the key.

Initially, back in 2013, TripCreator was founded by Hilmar Halldorsson (now VP Product), who was planning his own trip when he found himself visiting multiple websites to make separate reservations for each individual item for his journey. He came to the point where he thought to himself that travel planning shouldn’t be this difficult – and as a result, TripCreator was initially founded to assist travelers planning their personal trips, where the different travel items (flights, accommodation, experiences…) could all be collected in one place and reserved. In the first years, TripCreator gained good traction in the market, the brand became somewhat known and the company received awards for the solution, but the online presence, that is, the marketing was very costly and the revenue didn’t seem to override the cost in the long-run. The assessment at the time (and maybe still is, based on Utrip’s recent downfall) was simply that the typical consumer was not ready to plan his journey from scratch and make his reservations in such a platform. Thankfully, during the B2C period, TripCreator started to receive attention from travel professionals that wanted to use TripCreator for their businesses, – and as a result, TripCreator went into the B2B market exclusively, and has been there ever since.

Our vision is to provide travel professionals with the most advanced, time-saving itinerary creation platform, with powerful distribution options. It means that the platform needs to be simple to use, but at the same time to be packed with features to accommodate the needs of different travel professionals, outputting rich, dynamic itineraries that increase conversions; and the itineraries need to be distributable, because if the customers can’t see the itineraries, they will for sure not purchase them.

Our mission statement is to simplify the day-to-day activities of travel professionals by reducing their repetitive work by providing them with a cloud-based, advanced time-saving itinerary creation platform, contributing to higher yields by outputting rich, dynamic itineraries, while channeling powerful distribution options and automation possibilities, on a global scale.

From the start, we chose values that are equally as relevant for our internal- and external marketing.

Mutual benefit; without our team understanding the term mutual benefit, TripCreator would not exist today; at the same time, mutual benefit for us means to listen to the feedback we get from our customers, as when they benefit from our development, our platform becomes that much more beneficial to other travel professionals.

Time for fun; we communicate in a fun way with our customers; and we remember to have fun and celebrate the small and big achievements.

Simplicity is genius; is what drives our product to the market; and is also the reason why our platform is still simple to use, even after adding a lot of features from when our journey began.

Everything is possible; is the fundamental can-do attitude that drives the internal enthusiasm; and makes the feature requests from our customers a reality.

TripCreator aims to be a market leader by staying simple, which is also one of our biggest challenge. Every addition we make bears the risk of making onboarding heavier, as well as making our product more difficult to explain, market and sell, both to our current customers and our prospects. Every addition or change we make is strategic and thought out; and we are going forward on a very strict path to keep our focus on the vision. Furthermore, our development decisions are run through our Advisory board, which consists of diverse prime customers with decades of experience in the market. We are also participating in different travel industry associations and travel trade shows to be as close to the market as possible.

The communication with our customers is the key to our success, that is, the communication contributes to keeping our platform relevant – and because of the communication and how we respond to our customers’ requests, we are receiving a very positive feedback to the additions and the changes we make. As a result, our customer retention rate is high and therefore, we gain a very strong purpose; and with a strong purpose, our development output is high, and because it’s high, we do receive very positive testimonials, where trust and loyalty shines through. For us it’s simple: every positive action has a positive consequence, and in this context, consistency is the key.

Two years in tech is a decade or more in other industries; but we believe that in order to keep our churn rate virtually non existing, we need to keep evolving our core product, that is, our advanced itinerary creation platform according to our customers’ needs. We also need to continue allowing travel professionals to automate what can be automated, reducing repetitive work, allowing them to focus on their high yield clients. Integrations to reservation systems will become a requirement rather than luxury, and the possibility of allowing the end-customer to tailor the itineraries to his budget and liking, within limits set by the travel professional, will contribute to changed travel industry compared to how we know it today.

Asgeir Fannar Asgeirsson, CEO of TripCreator

From working eleven years in a destination management company and two years in an inbound travel agency and tour operator, I have a clear vision of how the industry has opportunities to develop in terms of working towards streamlining work procedures and reducing repetitive work by developing systems capable to go as far as automating the itinerary-sales process from supplier to the end consumer, allowing travel professionals to focus their time on their high yield customers.

Hilmar Halldorsson, VP Product of TripCreator

A passionate entrepreneur with over 16 years’ experience working in advertising, including running his own advertising agency in Iceland (Argus) from 1997-2009. Among traditional advertisement and design work, the agency offered various online solutions, including e-mail marketing, web design and UX/UI interface design. He participated in KLAK in 2012, an incubator in Iceland where the foundation of TripCreator went from an idea to reality.

“Designed for travel professionals to create more travel experiences customers will love.”