Since 2009, Monica Zaldivar has been busy building communities and connecting people in Berlin, both with her smile and her smartphone. She currently works at Roomsurfer.com, and she is eager to help, collaborate, test and give feedback about all services she comes across. Here she shares her fascination with social media and how it’s changing the way we travel…
Being on the lookout of the next best thing, killer features and future trends is part of a daily internet routine when building a startup. In the travel industry every day brings you in a new possibility that blows your mind. Sharing some of those discoveries with Ben Kaubisch from Jetstream and Nina Hüpen-Bestendonk from Smaracuja & Travelettes, we came up with the concept for the Tech Open Air Berlin satellite event last Friday and also for our must-attend panel on Social Media Week Berlin on 26 September. Here’s a sneak peek of some of the killer services we’ll be talking about…
The intersection of geolocated data and curated content is changing our relationship with spaces. Placed on smartphones this information becomes portable and instantly available, which not only shapes our city living, but also our discoveries of new places. Make the most of this crowdsourced data to create your own bespoke travel guide by cherry-picking from these awesome travel apps…
A long-time friend of anyone in a committed relationship with a smartphone, many use Foursquare only to stream where they are and check which of their friends is around. But when you are researching on the best spots in another city, personalised suggestions and lists made by locals on the mobile version are a goldmine.
Also, if you’re on your desktop, go to the Lists tab, and check for cool hotspots in cities around the world…
Amen started as a simple opinion-broadcasting platform, but one of its interesting new uses is as an on-the-hop travel guide. Being able to tap into the Hive Mind of a city’s residents to find out the best and worst bars, restaurants, donut shops, etc is priceless. Keep in mind some Ameners like sarcasm and don’t go to Kulturbrauerei because someone Amen’d that it is the next Berghain. But tap the “Explore” section of the app and you will see category feeds of different cities, food and travel topics.
Yes! On Instagram you can search by hashtags and since many pictures are geotagged, you can visibly *see* where to find the best sushi, sunset or most beloved spots of a city. And now with the photo maps, you can get a great view of where that specific local or blogger loves to hangout. A bit stalky, but hey, who isn’t nowadays?
EyeEm brings even more power to the tag, so if you search for a particular topic or place, you will see all pictures taken there grouped in a single album. Magic. See what’s going around in Melbourne or in Mexico City in a couple of scrolls!
Finding the hotspots on the exact night you are in town is now possible with Vamos: it will show you any upcoming public events on Facebook on a map. So you can now sneak into the cool parties locals enjoy like a pro :)
If you are familiar with Skyscanner and Kayak, Drungli will bring tears to your eyes. Not only does it help you to find the lowest cost routes on low-cost airlines within a three-month range, it also lets you set different alarms if the destination of your dreams goes under a certain price. It is simplified to the maximum, looks good and helps you with all those spontaneous approaches to travel.
Startup Stay is the best way to network with other entrepreneurs and save money during your bootstrapping years while building your startup. It allows you to sign-up using your Linkedin account, which brings trust on top of their invite-only community.
Leveraging your likes on Facebook through Connect, Roomsurfer allows you to find a like-minded host in the city you are visiting that matches your interests. For the ones familiar with Airbnb, 9flats and Couchsurfing, it puts a social-media matching layer on the best part of each.
Jetstream is a social travel app with which users can plan, share and record their journeys on the go or upload in one batch once WiFi is available. Geolocated photos, stories and destinations are displayed on a map, which is visible both on the mobile app and a map-based blog dedicated to each user. This makes email-based sharing possible, so that people without smartphones can follow the traveler on their journey.
The uses of If This Then That are almost infinite, but the ability to do things like automatically save your Instagram pictures to your Dropbox or get a mobile text message if it’s going to rain, can help make your travels go much more smoothly.