Startup TripThirsty wants to be the Pinterest for Travel. Monetized Groupon way.

Got a travel wishlist? Bangalore based TripThirsty connects armchair explorers with fantastic deals that turn travel dreams to reality. That is, you and your friends collect places you want to go to in wishlists, and the company works out group discounts for you behind the scenes.

The way TripThirsty works is very simple – start creating wishlists of places you want to visit and once a place is wishlisted, TripThirsty’s deal search engines go to work. That is, if multiple people, especially (Facebook) friends are interested in a particular trip the TripThirsty team will try to find group deals for them that they cannot get otherwise.

TripThirsty

TripThirsty

That is, an exclusive offer that will come with a certain deadline.

What about the backend (of deals)?

Typically, vendors who are looking to fill the last few seats in a tour/flight can use TripThirsty for help with filling those seats. No customer information is provided to vendors unless the customer explicitly expresses interest in a deal. Deals are emailed to customers, and when they accept the deal, TripThirsty connects them with the vendor.

Launched by IdeoPhone, TripThirsty’s beautifully done product isn’t trying to be a information portal around travel, but importantly has a CTA (call-to-action) built around the wishlist, which I believe is of immense value. In fact, it might just lead to people traveling more often and tick marking their wishlists.

There are a few good feature implementations that needs a mention:

#1: Seeding
There is a great amount of content that has been seeded before the launch. You can surely say that the team behind TripThirsty has been thirsty enough for trips and great collection of images just adds to the experience.

#2: This:

Honest with Facebook social feed

Honest with Facebook social feed

Being upfront about not abusing your social feed is a feature these days and very few startups respect this.

#3: Content Packaging

Even though it’s not as deep as what one would expect to have (for say, a package like ‘In the land of the Soviets‘), it does sets a tone for the visitors. Each package contains details of places (which you can mark as visited or add to wishlist), though one would expect more details about these places (weather/best time to visit etc etc).

Overall, great UX and I’d recommend the team to look at a timeline view of the wish – i.e. bring more call to action around wishlists (example: Wish to go to Disneyland, Hongkong by Oct 2013) which will also enable them to get better deals from travel vendors (demand forecasting?)

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Launch Contest

User who creates the most popular travel wishlist in February month gets 2 nights for 2 at any Linger property in March (disclaimer: Sameer of Linger is also part of NextBigWhat team).

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The product does compete with several travel startups (like MyGola,GoGoBot, Trippy etc) as well as startups like Wishberg who are building a horizontal play, but TripThirsty’s focus is to help people find places they want to go to and connecting them with friends who also want to go there.

SO if you are thirsty for trips, start your navigation and share your comments.