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From Sustainable Traveltech Startups to Innovation With AI,Machine Learning and Quality Curation

Despite a historic recession, spending on ourselves with more meaningful experiences is proving very popular, as people want to feel something that goes far deeper into their souls than the purchase of the latest must-have gadget. However, this is also partly due to a range of innovative travel tech startups, whose products and services, augmented by AI and machine learning, are helping end-users to curate the best and most relevant experiences possible – so which companies are impressing users the most?

We may well be in the most consequential recession for decades, but this doesn’t mean people have ceased all spending – they’re just choosing what to spend their money on more wisely. Leisure travel is one way to reward yourself for the hard work you’ve undertaken, and unlike the latest fleeting gadget of the moment, global travel to special destinations is something discerning people are willing to spend on – leisure travel is not just “for the rich.”

Part of this is a psychological factor, following the pandemic’s lockdown and strict restrictions that some fear may well return. Add to this the phenomenon of rising airline ticket prices, which have only just started moderating a little, and it is no surprise to see people wanting to catch up on time ‘lost’ in lockdown – or simply a desire to reconnect with humanity and nature in ways that are very different from yet another staycation.

Indeed,  travel startups and other travel-related projects around the globe are still attracting investors, partners and funding, with plenty of interest in innovative ideas from AI and Web3 development, to digital assets payments methods.

All of that said, personalized travel remains one of the most popular trends within the travel industry today – and with personalization of our experiences more granular than ever before, this displays the human psyche and desire for quality experiences has not diminshed!

So, what are some of the signs the traveltech space and personalized travel is growing strongly?

Deloitte Insights released its “State of the US Consumer” report last month, showing that the everyday US consumer is spending less, because they are saving for summer travel – with summer now upon us. However, according to figure 4 (reprinted below) pf the report. leisure travel remained  an exception to pre-summer spending curbs and rose  ahead of the summer season, which provided signs of healthy spending confidence in the leisure travel market.

This growing leisure travel trend was also positively evaluated earlier this year by AirBNB, which announced 2022 as a record for the company, with a net income of $1.9 billion, while predicting that consumer confidence in travel in Q1 2023 would remain high.

One of the latest success stories  in the traveltech industry is the German startup GetYourGuide, which secured a stunning €182 million in funding, to be used for accelerating AI and ML development and fir global expansion.

Offering unforgettable cultural experiences, the platform is accessible through its website and mobile apps, helping users find top-rated tours and activities at your destination. In addition, the startup’s mobile app also lets you conveniently download, store, and access all of your activity tickets, making the process of managing your leisure travel experience simpler and easier than ever.

Earlier this year, the Bach app, used for planning bachelorette trips and group travel experiences across dozens of major U.S. cities, announced $9 million in Series A funding. The goal behind creating Bach was to help friends coordinate group travel – all in one app. After inviting all of your friends to start planning a joint trip, you can discuss all the details, from where and to go and what to do, to how much are you willing to pay.

The app lets you even split the expenses and track all costs, so it is all about convenience and what’s most important for bachelorettes – the idea of playing and paying fairly. Bach also helps select the best experiences available during your travels, which can be booked directly through the app. Available experiences include party buses, yacht charters, retreats, excursions and more.

The Japanese nature-experience travel platform launched its curation of nature-based experiences, covering a wide range of activities, including photography, meditation, yoga, diving, trekking, fly-fishing, surfing, SUP, snow sports, farm experiences, nature-based “escapes”, adventure tour packages, and more.

Curated by a selection of distinguished guides, including Australian Geographic photographer Aaron Jamsonian, amongs many others, Kammui partners with over 100 of these world-class guides  and operators across Japan to deliver a diverse range of premium experiences that allow people to connect with nature in memorable ways.

For those seeking an even more curated and personalized experience, the company has also launched  Kammui+, which adds a new membership tier that even more discerning nature-experience seekers wanting the highest quality experiences will want to explore. Not only does Kammui contribute to sustainability initiatives in partnership with Leave No Trace Japan, but Kammui is working with a number of global ambassadors to help highlight Japan’s natural wonders. Kammui+ first ambassador is the James Beard award-winning Californian chef and author Stuart Brioza who is set to embark on a deliciously thrilling culinary adventure across Hokkaido, Japan’s northernmost island. This journey will not only immerse Stuart in the region’s diverse food bounty and showcase the intersection of outdoor adventure travel and culinary inspiration, but you’ll be on the journey too, tantalizing your tastebuds with the best leisure travel has to offer,

The urgency for reconnection to nature and leisure travel comes as no surprise given the aforementioned lockdown years of the pandemic, where getaways were feared and forbidden to venture forth into, but in 2023, this has changed at last, with a gentler, kinder way of being appealing to so many people at an deeply personal level.

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