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A tech blogger favorite, the travel service plans to grow more features and boost marketing spend.
Tripit, a service that helps people manage and share their travel plans, landed a $7 million Series C round of funding, led by Azure Capital partners. Existing investor O’Reilly AlphaTech Ventures (OATV) also participated. The round brings Tripit’s total funding to $13.1 million.
For someone who travels infrequently, the utility of having a third-party organize your trips may not be immediately apparent, but the site has earned strong endorsements from tech press (who tend to do a lot of traveling to various conferences). It made Time’s 50 best websites of 2009, the CNET Webware 100 List, and TechCrunch 40. Mike Arrington says he uses it everyday.
Tripit users forward their itinerary confirmation emails from virtually any travel site (Orbitz, American Airlines, etc—it can handle over 1000 different types), and Tripit basically does everything it can to make that useful. Through its various features, the site
- creates a master itinerary that combines all of a user's travel plans
- lets users export relevant info to personal calendars quickly
- provides info on weather, maps, and restaurants
- sends text message alerts with flight delays, and upon arrival with gate information
- offers ways to collaborate and share trip plans with friends and colleagues on Facebook and LinkedIn
- makes itineraries available on free Android, BlackBerry and iPhone apps
- tracks airline seat prices, in case prices drop and travelers become entitled to refunds, thanks to a partnership with travel tracking site Yapta.
Tripit CEO Gregg Brockway says the company will use the new funds for product development and marketing. I’ve pinged him to get a feel for how many of his users are frequent fliers (once a month or more) versus casual travelers (3-4 flights or less a year). I’ll update the post when I hear back. Update: Gregg says about 20% of Tripit users travel at least once per month.
The company was founded in October of 2006 and has about 15 employees. Its competitors include enterprise travel site Rearden Commerce, which has raised a whopping $240 million in venture capital.
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TripIt, the trip management company, helps people organize and share their travel plans no matter where they book. Travelers simply forward their travel confirmation emails from over 1,000 sites to email@example.com. TripIt automatically creates a master itinerary that combines all their travel plans plus weather, maps, restaurants and more.
With TripIt it’s easy to share and collaborate on trips with friends and colleagues in social networks. TripIt itineraries can be accessed via online, mobile device, free Android, BlackBerry and iPhone apps, personal calendars and social networking sites including the free LinkedIn travel app.
TripIt is an open itinerary platform that works with a growing eco-system of travel and mobile partners. The new TripIt Pro premium service for frequent travelers automatically monitors travel itineraries, providing mobile alerts, alternate flight options, frequent traveler point tracking and automated trip sharing.
TripIt was founded in San Francisco in October 2006 and launched in September 2007. The company has raised $13.1 million from investors that include O’Reilly AlphaTech Ventures (OATV) and Azure Capital Partners. The TripIt co-founders are an experienced team of travel and technology executives:
Gregg Brockway, President – Former president of Classic Vacations (an Expedia company), and co-founder and chief product officer at Hotwire
Scott Hintz, VP Business Development– Former senior vice president of product at Hotwire, and strategy consultant at Accenture.
Andrew Denmark, VP Engineering – Former engineering director at Opsware, and chief technology officer at CityRealty.com.
At the heart of TripIt is the Itinerator, which automatically creates structured trip itineraries from the unstructured data in travel confirmation emails. It also aggregates related data from other websites to provide useful travel information, like weather, maps and directions. The Itinerator is an open technology platform that works with all major travel websites and all major email systems. TripIt's goal is to provide one place for all travel information, accessible whenever travelers need it.
TripIt has also been architected for social networking and includes many options for trip sharing and collaboration. Travelers can share trips with people inside and outside their TripIt Network, and post plans on social networks like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Closeness alerts tell travleers when their trips overlap with other people in their TripIt network. TripIt Company Groups tracks and shares the dates and locations of employee business travel, and TripIt for Google Apps has Company Groups and a several Google gadgets to help organizations and individual travelers manage their business trips.
TripIt has an open API that powers My Travel on LinkedIn and TripIt for Facebook Connect. Additionally, hundreds of developers use the API to intergrate TripIt with their web services and mobile apps.