Two companies aim to take the trouble out of travel booking
LONDON, March 10 – Two Berlin-based start-ups, GoEuro and Waymate, have emerged as new potential solutions to streamlining the complexities of booking multistage/multimodal journeys.
Both GoEuro and Waymate use algorithm-driven travel sites to make it easier to search and compare different means of transportation and various combinations of transport – such as bus and rail, for example – and then book these multimodal journeys through one single portal, as opposed to being redirected to one, or several, ticket providers’ sites, as is the case when using price comparision sites such as Skyscanner.
The Berlin-based GoEuro recently secured an initial round of funding to the tune of US$4 million (RM12.4 million) led by Battery Ventures. GoEuro is based around the concept that one single search will generate all your travel options between European cities, towns or villages regardless of whether these travel options are by rail, bus or air.
A closed beta version of GoEuro is expected to launch in a few weeks’ time. Sign up to be informed when the service will be available at goeuro.com.
Waymate does not have the seed funding behind it that GoEuro does, but rather is aided by a co-founder of the IT firm CompuNet, Günther Lamperstorfer. Currently Waymate lets users purchase tickets for German national rail operator Deutsche Bahn (DB) and redeem loyalty points, without the need to visit DB’s own site.
Waymate aims to build upon this service and apply the same principles it currently uses with DB to both intercity and local travel. Apps for both these purposes are due out later this year and, according to reports, by 2014 Waymate hopes to consolidate both of these services into one single application. Visit Waymate at waymate.de.
With both start-ups in the early stages of development it remains to be seen if they can tackle the massive complexities involved in multimodal trans-European travel. – AFP/Relaxnews