The August Update: Why now is the best time for innovation, re-igniting Australian tourism, and.. when’s the launch again?

I write this as we move into Stage 4 lockdown in Melbourne for the next 6 weeks, with a 5km limit and curfews from 8pm-5am, off the back of another day of 600+ new cases.

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To everyone who has reached out in the last few months ...

To say hi, share your intrigue and excitement for the launch of the Travis platform (promise we’ll peel back the layers on this soon), to share your own frustrations with travel planning, or your own projects and ideas on how we could work together, or simply to ask if we are okay — thank you. I look back at the last 4 months and couldn’t be prouder of what we have achieved as a team in ~20 weeks of lockdown and full remote working across Melbourne and Sydney. We are well and truly in a new normal.

So, let’s talk about that big, fat elephant in the room: Travel + COVID = ?

Yes, it might take years for travel to get back to 2019 levels. The industry was booming and we were travelling internationally more than ever. It was a luxury that was made so available that it became a necessary part of our a way of life. It was an absolute privilege that we were starting to take for granted. But what if we looked at this differently?

There’s never been a better time for innovation in travel. We take (some) comfort that some of the biggest companies (Airbnb, Slack) in the last decade were founded in the last global recession, and that everyday we see people around us continuing to create, innovate, and bring new ideas to life — across industries. For us (pre-launch, pre-revenue), this means time — to bridge the gap between how millennial travellers travel, and the solutions available to deliver an intuitive, enjoyable digital experience right from first inspiration and discovery of a new place, right through to research, planning, booking, and sharing. This is the platform we are building, designed specifically for travel. We’re doing the hard yards — and if this is a proposition you think can solve your needs as a traveller, creator, or business, join the waitlist for early access to the beta. Your early input at this stage only means that we’re able to make it better, for you.

There’s never been a better time to focus on Australian-first travel. Forget the prospect of hazmat suits or full-protective gear on international flights. We’ll travel differently, and this will mean exploring closer to home, first. In fact, we’re kicking off a series on Rediscovering Australia and will be dedicating our blog to this in the next month! More on this soon.

In the last 6 weeks, we:

  • Rebranded + relaunched this website. Intentionally bold, Travis is designed and built for the new generation of digital travellers.
  • Shared the stories of 8 creators on Not Just A Pretty Feed. The privilege of travel shapes your perspective, your life, and your work — and we want to share stories from those in our community who embody this.
  • Launched a chatbot. The same way that The Matrix got us to question the truth, our Travis bot urges you to Seek The Truth and Reset Travel with us.
  • Signed up 520+ curious travellers on the waitlist. And I am grateful that you’ve been curious enough to drop us your email!

Here’s what we’re gearing towards next:

  • Rediscovering Australia for the New Gen. Over the next month, we’re on a mission to uncover, celebrate and showcase lesser known destinations, experiences, businesses and people in Australia — for a new generation of travellers. Look out for our Top 30 list, Q&A’s, roundups of our favourite stays, vineyards and wineries, and more. If you want to contribute to this or be featured in any way — please reach out at nicole@travistravis.co!
  • New collaborations and partnerships. Are you working on your own travel business, side hustle, or creative project? Perhaps you are looking to launch new local travel guides for your visitors, or showcase local unheard of experiences, or share your love for uncanny architecture, unusual food, and unexpected sights across cities - get in touch to discuss how we can support your work!
  • Our private beta launches in less than 8 weeks. We’re sprinting to complete development, get into testing, work out the finer details and will be releasing private invites in batches — so signup to get on the waitlist! At this early stage, this version of the platform will be best suited for individuals and brands who: 1) love sharing your travel content (visual diaries, itineraries) and 2) want to have an active voice in reshaping the future of travel with us.

And the ever important:

  • Current Netflix crutch: Blacklist. Anyone else enjoy the adventures of an international criminal empire?
  • Startups, tech and tools we’re loving. 1) Mmhmm - injecting personality into your Zoom screenshares. 2) Landbot  -  a no-code conversational chat builder (have you given our chatbot a go?)

If you have any questions, feedback, or just want to say hi, you can find me at nicole@travistravis.co! Or, follow Travis on your channel of choice — Instagram or LinkedIn.

Nicole

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