Continuing my hunt for the ultimate Travel Inspiration Engine.

I just found Tripbase. It features a Destination Finder on the home page which makes recommendations based on 22 million traveller reviews and 3000 travel blogs and websites (if you believe what it says). I wonder if it queries the TripAdvisor database?

Anyway... you plug in your dates for travel, departure airport (in my case London Gatwick) and then you have five sliders - Nightlife, Dining, Shopping, Nature, Attractions. Which you set relative to the amount of each you want in your ideal holiday. Easy to use, but a tad meaningless.

I just pushed the sliders along in fairly random fashion, chose a week long trip in early January... and hit the button.

And the site returned a bunch of places in Australia. Hmmm. For a seven day trip from the UK leaving in three weeks.

According to the About page:

What sets Tripbase apart is our ability to analyze, match and
reassemble that data quickly and precisely, so that our visitors only
get the information that's valuable for them. We are able to do this
because our experts have developed cutting-edge artificial intelligence
technology. This technology analyzes the preferences a visitor selects
and gives unbiased recommendations for a personalized vacation,
including the most appropriate destinations, activities, flights,
hotels and more!

Cutting edge? Only information that's valuable to me? I don't think so.

4 thoughts on “Uninspired by Tripbase

  1. I put the sliders to max for "dining" and "nature", with "nightlife" and "shopping" set at zero and their experts suggested I go to ... Leeds. Uh?

  2. Hi Jeremy,

    Thank you very much for your review and feedback.

    I am the CEO of Tripbase.com
    We are hard at work trying to make the best destination finder on the web.
    This task is not an easy one as it requires extensive quantities of data, and precision.
    In our database we currently have over 20,000 destinations and are constantly trying to improve both our algorithms and our user interface to provide our users with better, most accurate results.

    Our system works by Mining the internet for relevant data about each of our destinations and trying to improve its understanding of the underlying make up of each place (We currently use more than 26 million data points).

    We are aware that the system still needs work, and I would very much appreciate any other feedback you could provide.
    An upcoming version of Tripbase will address some some of the issues you have brought up.

    Thanks again,
    Reuven Levitt
    CEO / CoFounder

  3. Hi Reuven
    Thanks very much for taking the time to comment. It's great to have such instant feedback from someone at the top!
    A few thoughts
    1) The search results need to take into account distance... offering me a break to Australia for just a week when I am based in the UK just makes no sense. I'd have thought that ought to be quite an easy thing to build into the functionality? Maybe it's even ther already and not working properly as you ask where my home airport is.
    2) The sliders themselves - I like the ease with which you can use them. Conceptually a great idea - simple and quick. I wonder if they are a bit vague though. (What do I get the further along I push them? More dining? Better dining? More shopping? Better shopping?) I guess it's about balancing one category relative against another. In some ways I like the relative arbitrariness of it... in others I find it a bit frustrating. I wonder if you need a 'Culture' slider too? Attractions for me feels like Theme Parks, but I'm into historical stuff like Roman remains etc.
    3) I'm guessing that much of your 'data' is based on a US vacationer rather than a UK holidaymaker. I wonder if that will mean that the suggestions are less appropriate for me? (I think so)
    My quest for the ultimate inspiration engine goes on and I will be sure to drop by Tripbase and see how things are developing.
    Best wishes - and thanks again for taking the time to comment here.

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