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CEO, Travel Planning Platform
The Client & The App
Trava is a startup company in the United States that needed our support to build an app from scratch that will help groups plan their trips, making it a lot simpler and easier.
People are often dissuaded from taking trips because there’s so much coordination and planning, so Trava’s goal was to reduce the time it takes to organise a trip from 10 hours to a matter of minutes.
Our role and involvement
The main goal for us was to build a mobile app that will allow users to create an itinerary based on preferences of all group members. What is more, the plan should be logistically-optimised so people do not have to waste time travelling long distances between successive locations. They should also be able to share their moments with not only group members, but the whole Trava community. Therefore, we needed to enrich the Trava app with Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning solutions and social media features.
We started cooperation with Trava because, as they say, our team was able to understand their business speak and translate it into code. Trava trusted us due to our perfect rating and as we also exhibited our English proficiency.
Discovery & Design
Trava came to us with an idea they had thoroughly thought through. However, we’ve had a significant impact on the project as we conceptualised it together.
We began by understanding the client’s concept, validating it during the beta-testing phase by offering early access to users, and advising on how to develop the app to receive the ultimate value for the same price.
Although the client provided designs, we started the project by reviewing them and defining the final flow and look of the app.
Having the design, within a few months our development team built an app that was ready to be reviewed by the client. Since then, we have worked in two-week sprints, defining the current scope in cooperation with the client.
To provide the itinerary functionality, we had to build a Machine Learning algorithm that works well on small data sets. Users’ opinions expressed in voting are just a sample for the algorithm to establish their preferences and build the itinerary based on them.
We needed to include a front-end based on custom designs and sophisticated data management. As destinations and attractions can be added to the calendar or favourites or be voted on, managing those in case of changing or deleting was needed. We had to make sure that changes won’t affect items observed by users.
We also had to build a social network functionality. Users can add stories from their trips that contain images and videos, and those can be observed by others, commented and liked. Those posts should also be recommended to users interested in such content, and to address this functionality we implemented the TeaRex.ai tool.
We’ve used React Native on the frontend, React Query as the state manager, TypeScript, and Amplify using GraphQL and AWS AppSync for the backend. To offer relevant posts to users we used TeaRex.ai and the database is DynamoDB.
Maintenance & Further development
With the app already on the market, the client took over the control over the development process as they wanted to grow their internal development team for maintenance. When they require assistance, our role usually involves conducting QA testing to ensure seamless functionality. We’re also offering advice and guidance when needed.
In a year, we’ve built a travel itinerary planning mobile app from scratch. Trava offers users a predefined pool of destinations, attractions and dining places from which they can choose. However, it also empowers users to expand this selection by enabling them to create their own ones. Users can initiate a trip, select an existing destination or create a new one if it’s not already available. They can then invite others to join the trip and collectively decide on their activities through voting. Any spots created by users within the app are added to the shared pool, enriching the collection of destinations and attractions available to all users for planning their future trips. This leads to a continuously expanding base of places within the Trava app.
As a result, the Trava app provides logistically-optimised itineraries, considering logistics, distances, and time-saving strategies to enhance the overall travel experience for each group member. Moreover, Trava encourages users to post about their trips on their own social feed, tagging their experiences. Those moments are recommended to the Trava community for inspiration, so other users with similar interests and preferences can save them to their bucket lists and plan their own future trips.
Trava has been live since January 2023 and is growing at 30% month-over-month. They’ve been successful, but are still working their way up by tinkering, listening to customer feedback, and iterating.