As crypto and other blockchain applications continue to mature and institutionalize, startups making use of the technologies are mushrooming. The expansion has been so rapid, in fact, that the New York Times has even framed these so-called “Web 3” ventures as creating something of a “brain drain” of talent from the big Silicon Valley companies.
While several industries have received a great deal of attention for their embrace of blockchain and cryptos, one sector that has received somewhat less fanfare for its related startups is that of travel. There have been attempts to create a new generation of blockchain-based home sharing, for example, as well as the emergence of crypto marketplaces for everything from rewards to hotel bookings. It has also been noted at the online financial site AskMoney that some travelers are now signing up for “crypto tours” and events. This idea has come about partly as a way for travelers to spend crypto that otherwise would need to be converted into fiat currencies to be of use.
To get a flavor of what’s out there, read on for a few words on some of the travel startups leveraging the tech.
Health verification when traveling is a stressful prospect. Meanwhile health and identity –– two areas of data that are extremely sensitive –– need protecting, whether from a border agency or any given third party. Enter Zamna, recently selected by a United Nations International Civil Aviation Organization pilot program to support pandemic recovery in the travel industry. This company brings the cryptographic strengths of blockchain to the fore, using the technology as a means of verifying identity and health records, without compromising the storage of the data.
A Swiss company that aims to emulate the cheese by punching holes in the dominance of the price comparison middlemen, Winding Tree uses the Ethereum blockchain to connect purchasers more directly to airlines, reducing fees that companies like Expedia typically charge. The promising startup has worked with Air Canada, and recently partnered with American Airlines to expand its practices.
Unlike Winding Tree with its decentralized efforts, Travala is laid out a bit like a more typical tour and travel site. The key difference is that it accepts a huge range of cryptos as payments. Travala encourages the use of its own AVA tokens, of course, mainly via discounts. And as is the case with a lot of companies in the space, these tokens can also function a bit like shares, since locking enough of them into a wallet allows the holder some say in governance decisions.
This one is ambitious. Blockskye is aiming to dethrone Global Distribution Systems (GDS) used by service providers in the travel industry to transact in real-time. Although GDS itself has become more niche, it would be impressive to see a blockchain application resolve the use cases it still serves. Time will tell if Blockskye can pull it off.
We hope this gives you some sense of how blockchain tech is coming to impact the travel startup sector. And while crypto and blockchain may be among the more active tech layers and sectors, they are by no means the only ones with growth potential. Come back and visit us again!Activate Social Media: