Horizon, a Start-Up Chile company, enables travelers to find places to stay with people they trust by facilitating private hospitality exchange networks.
Travel is expensive for the 200 million millennials who travel every year. Many travel decisions are therefore based on the location of friends. Data gleaned by TripAdvisor shows 27% of trips involve staying with friends or family. Knowing someone to stay with saves on accommodation costs, and increases travel opportunities.
Anyone who has ever stayed with friends while traveling to unfamiliar places knows that it is the best way to experience local culture and the least expensive way to explore the globe. Staying at someone’s home is hard unless you are good friends, or you are comfortable staying with a stranger. Existing hospitality exchange networks lack this one essential facet—trust.
A new service called Horizon launches this month and it changes the way people look at travel. Horizon is built on the idea that travel can be made easy through a social network of global connections. Networks are created around traveler’s interests, education, and service to others. That musical association to develop a further interest in the ukulele, a college fraternity, and a fellowship for a charitable organization such as Kiva—those networks become the seeds for an affordable travel experience as a result of every person in those communities serving as a potential trusted host.
“We’ve re-imagined what it looks like to plan a trip to an unknown city,” says co-founder Drew Meyers. “Travelers are looking for deeper connections on their adventures, and their first stop for that kind of trust should be their own relationships. With Horizon, finding those contacts is just a few clicks away.”
Here is how it works for travelers:
Login with Facebook
Turn on the groups and communities to which they belong
Search for the desired city to travel to
Request a stay with a trusted host
The app is in beta with Start-Up Chile, the largest and most diverse startup community in the world. Working with Start-Up Chile, Horizon will facilitate in person experiences among 1,500+ entrepreneurs scattered across more than 75 countries. Deeper friendships lead to additional word of mouth and a stronger, more successful Start-Up Chile community for generations to come. With access to trusted connections dotted around the globe, that dream trip to Tokyo, London, or Rio de Janeiro is a lot more affordable.
Those who are part of the Start-Up Chile family can sign up for access to the iOS application:http://www.horizonapp.co/startup-chile. Everyone else can join the wait list for the public release later this year:http://www.horizonapp.co
Horizon was co-founded by Drew Meyers, Will Moyer, and Eric Roland in June 2014 . Roland brings 17 years experience in software architecture to the table and experience as a former key team lead for Telepoint. Meyers ran the Zillow API program and was instrumental to the company’s early community building efforts. Full public launch is expected by November 2014. Horizon is based in Seattle, Washington and Louisville, Kentucky.
For more information or to inquire about setting up your own private hospitality community, visithttp://www.horizonapp.co, or email co-founder Drew Meyers at drew(at)horizonapp(dot)co.