Tech of the Week: Find Friends, Make Memories With New Social App CheckedIn
Graphic via Facebook
It’s strange. We take trips to all corners of the world, meet new people and still consider travel to be a lonely enterprise.
We might fly off on a corporate trip alone or head out on holiday with our families, rarely considering an attempt to explore outside of our social circle. One such innovation is hoping to add a more social tint to your usual journey.
It’s called CheckedIn, and its value can be appreciated immediately by anyone who has ever yearned to meet new people as they were discovering new places.
The following video offers a cursory glance at an immersive app that will enhance your adventures with more than just memories.
As you can see, CheckedIn makes your travels far friendlier.
Obviously, there are many around the world who would like to keep their respective trips as isolated as possible.
However, extroverts rejoice, because now there is a way to meet up with likeminded people who are out to enjoy the city in which they find themselves.
Thankfully, CheckedIn's co-founders, Zach Messenger and Evan O'Connor offered the following advice on how to get the most out of the app as well as where CheckedIn is headed in the future.
And, for hospitality officials, there is plenty to love about an app that offers information on the kind of activities that drive your consumers.
In a world inundated with social media apps, CheckedIn is aiming to get you away from the phone and Facebook updates and out meeting new people.
Travelpulse: CheckedIn seems like a great way to make your trips more social. What was the impetus behind CheckedIn?
CheckedIn: CheckedIn is the result of personal experiences, a passion for traveling, and a common frustration. No matter where we go or who we are with — alone, with family, or friends — we look for a way to connect with other like-minded, nearby travelers, without going the dating app route.
Unfortunately, there just hasn’t been anything out there that fits the bill.
So...we set out to change that. With CheckedIn, you can search for, interact with, and share experiences with other travelers based on proximity and passions.
We also know property managers have a need that can fit seamlessly into our model. Travelers are no longer just paying for a place to sleep; they are paying for convenience and a personalized experience. CheckedIn’s data allows hosts to easily tap into the passions that drive their guests, so we expanded our initial concept (connecting travelers) to serve properties (hotels, hostels, peer-to-peer lodging companies), too.
TP: What has the feedback been from users so far? How have they enjoyed what might otherwise be missed encounters?
CI: We launched CheckedIn at the end of February 2016 and are currently focused on growing our user base to a critical mass. Already the response has been overwhelmingly positive. We are hearing lots of stories about situations in which travelers wished they had a platform like this:
A couple we know who wanted to go on a fishing excursion in the Bahamas needed to fill four more spots to make it happen. If they had had CheckedIn at their fingertips, they could have found other couples and/or people to go on the excursion with them.
Additionally, one of our friends is a thirty-something woman with a demanding job and a passion for travel. She’s had it with having to, in her words, “date her way to friendships,” just to find people to explore a new city with. The alternative for her has been to change her go-to lodging choices (from hotels to group boarding options) so she can guarantee meeting people on friendly terms. CheckedIn opens up a third path for her — something she’s excited about.
TP: We are excited to hear how CheckedIn makes a difference in our users’ experiences going forward. Explain a bit on the technology that takes place behind the scenes?
CI: On the user side, CheckedIn isn’t using a complicated algorithm to match people. Instead, we are putting the power in our users’ hands. You, the user, get to see everyone around you and filter by what you, specifically, are looking to do (eat, explore, be active, etc.) and the type of people you want to meet (male, female, age, traveling for business/leisure, traveling with family, friends, or alone, etc.).
On the property manager side, the technology is quite exciting. Using CheckedIn, property managers will not only have all of their guests’ information at their fingertips but also be able to interact with them — individually, via direct message, or to a group, via push notifications. All of this gives property managers the ability to customize certain aspects of the trip and enable guests to have a more personalized experience — something everyone wants. CheckedIn also gives property managers the ability to react to requests and anticipate actions — the idea is they’ll know what you want to see or do before you even do.
TP: What can users expect in the coming future with this innovation?
CI: Right now we are focused on partnering with the right hotels, hostels and P2P lodging companies and are in active talks with multiple brands across multiple markets. Once these partnerships are in place, users will have direct contact with some of their favorite boutique brands and these brands will have the ability to personalize the experience for each and every guest.
In the longer term, we want to create a travel ecosystem around CheckedIn. Given the demographic information we have (breakdown of business vs. leisure trips, favorite activities, age, etc.) we can revolutionize the way people book places to stay. They can also follow other travelers and see where they have been, view photos, write reviews and take a look at future trips planned.
TP: How can someone planning a trip get the most out of CheckedIn?
CI: CheckedIn is all about enhancing your experience during your trip — to connect with others online, so you can go offline and explore the world together beyond the four walls of your room.
The best way to explain how to get the most out of CheckedIn is through examples. On the traveler side:
Let’s say you are traveling to Los Angeles. You can check into your hotel on CheckedIn while en route to the airport, see others who are already there and message someone you may want to meet up with later. You can also post a status depending on your interests (i.e. “Who wants to hike Runyon Mountain this afternoon?”). This way while you are in flight, the people you messaged can respond and others can respond to your status. Once in LA, you can use the local page to find local businesses and things to do.
An example of personalization from the property management side:
Let’s say you traveled to New York City for a business meeting and have a few hours to spare. Based on the information input, your host will know you are a male or female, say in your late 20s, traveling alone for business, who describes him or herself as “health nut”, “cyclist” and “marathoner.”
Because of this information, the property manager replaces that pillow chocolate with a Clif Bar and offers a complimentary spin class at a nearby studio. Your host has now delivered you a more personalized experience, providing you the opportunity to fit in your passion during a business trip, and to meet others who share that passion.
CheckedIn: Revolutionizing the social side of travel in simple 4 steps. Download it today! pic.twitter.com/Cl7hjJISCi— CheckedInClub (@CheckedinClub) March 13, 2016
TP: Lastly, is there anything you feel our readers would love to hear about CheckedIn?
CI: We are constantly looking for new and innovative ways to improve the way people travel, and we are in the middle of finalizing some exciting developments. Keep your eyes and ears open so you don’t miss these upcoming announcements. Everything we do is for the benefit of you, the traveler.
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