India is the world’s second fastest growing economy among the major economies and along with it, the wallet of the average Indian is growing fatter. He has started to spend more and travel more. Vacations are an absolute must with the kind of life-styles people lead today. With this need, arises the Travel Sector. In this rapidly growing industry, traveltriangle.com is a web based startup founded by Sankalp Agrawal and Sanchit Garg. Traveltriangle.com is a one stop solution for the travel plans of the customers. Based in Noida, traveltriangle.com has some interesting features up its sleeve. Jubin Mehta from YourStory.in caught up with the founder to roll down the sleeve! Edited Excerpts:
What is TravelTriangle and how is it different from the traditional method of booking tickets?
Traveltriangle.com is a platform which brings together agents with best deals as per the customers travel needs. When a traveler submits his trip request, he gets 4-5 competing quotes from best travel agents for his requirements. This facilitates the traveler to compare and choose the best deal without any hassles. If not with traveltriangle.com, the traveller has to call each agent individually and negotiate, and then decide upon one without knowing the reason for his quote. Later, the user may discover a better deal. This wouldn’t happen with TravelTriangle.
Tell us about the background of the owner and the team.
Sankalp Agrawal (26), my school friend, and I, Sanchit Garg (26), started traveltriangle.com after quitting jobs in the middle of 2010. Prior to this Sankalp worked at Adobe for 2 years and I worked at Yahoo! for the same period. Both of us are Computer Science graduates, Sankalp from IIT Kharagpur, 2008 batch and myself from IIT Bombay 2008 batch. Our team includes two of our friends Prabhat Gupta (IIT Guwahati) and Amit Mehrotra (CS Dept., Pune University) as core development members. Anurag Rawat, Rishabh Goel and Mohd. Danish are helping us in bootstrapping sales and marketing as our interns. With the kind of chemistry we share, the mood is high at TravelTriangle and we’re aiming to revolutionize the way people decide about their travel trips.
Why the name TravelTriangle?
We’ve all been through the cumbersome process of planning a trip. Look for agents, compare a few of them and then make a choice based on good faith. The idea here is to bring the best dealers at the same platform coupled with reviews and trip itinerary. The name TravelTriangle excited us and at the same time is meaningful as we are connecting 3 entities: travelers, travel agents and an efficient marketplace.
What are your expansion plans?
Right now we are focused on providing a 'wow experience' to travelers while booking their
trips. Our challenge is to reach out to a larger set of people with minimum budget. The back-end
operations also need to be scaled accordingly. We do plan to get angel/seed funding in the next
three months for this scale up. Once we are established with a big customer base, we may look at the possibilities of offering other products.
How do you aim to generate revenue? What is your revenue model?
Our services are free for travelers. They get quotes from multiple agents and we charge a commission on every transaction from travel agents. Right now agents provide hefty commissions to B2B agents who bring them customers. We are trying to structure this process and bring down commissions by connecting travelers directly to tour providers.
Who are your competitors and how are you different?
Our main competitor is zicasson but currently it is not a full-fledged company and is not at all present in India.Traveltriangle is not a travel agent. Traveltriangle.com is the 'marketplace' where one can search trips from leading travel agents. With this, we save the customer from doing all the research and comparing plans from multiple travel agents. Our unique usage of technology provides a traveler with virtual tours and 3D panoramas of their destinations. The goal is to help traveler find the most suited trip without any hassle.
Tell us something about your affiliations.
We currently have around 50 travel agents on board with us. We have personally met with each of them and have done background check before we bring them on board. These agents are distributed throughout India. Most of them are pretty big who have as many as 50 branches in the country. These agents they use our portal to catch travelers for their business.
Are you looking at hiring?
Yes, we are looking for enterprising folks who can help us in operations, customer handling, sales and business development in an energetic and vibrant environment.
What are your expectations from YourStory.in readers?
While we promise of providing best services to each of our customers, we would need their support to make this one stop solution for travel needs a success. Our request to them is to come on our portal and try out our services for their next bookings; we assure them that they’d get the best deal available for their trip.