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This article was published on March 29, 2017

5 startups making globetrotting the world a hassle-free affair

5 startups making globetrotting the world a hassle-free affair
Sophie Bittner
Story by

Sophie Bittner

Former TNW employee

I recently moved to Amsterdam to work for TNW and so far it has been an absolute blast. New city, culture, food and people – what else could any self-proclaimed globetrotter ask for?

I have always loved to travel and tend to seize every opportunity to explore the world. I was only a couple of months old when I got on my first plane. As soon as I was allowed to work I spent every summer saving up for the next trip. I went from Vienna to Los Angeles,  with stops in Tokyo, the Bahamas, and other international hotspots.. Now that I’ve finished my studies I’m packing my bags for the third time, and moving to a new country.

Traveling like this builds character, but over the years I’ve ran into difficulties where I’ve longed for an easier solution. Luckily, as part of the Startup Team working on the TNW Conference, I now basically get paid to discover new apps and software that tackle the problems I experienced.

Here are five essential tools that promise to make life for digital nomads a little easier, plus one that has the potential to actually save lives. All will be attending our BOOST Program.

1. Favoroute

Personalised travel guides created by a community of Travel Designers.

I moved to Amsterdam after previously having spent only about four hours in the city. Now that I have access 24/7 I want to explore the city without seeming like too much of a tourist. Favoroute is a wonderful solution for that. Their guides are not “one size fits all”, but rather written for specific travel styles. You don’t just get the obvious tips, but hidden spots curated by locals that give you a very personalized experience and will make you feel more like visiting an old friend than a foreign city.

2. Mymanu CLIK

Wireless smart earphones that let you control your music, apps, and notifications and come with a live translation feature.

While people in Amsterdam will often talk English to you right off the bat, I remember standing on the outskirts of Kyoto without a clue how to get back to my hotel. No matter how advanced your Google Maps-skills are, nothing beats the knowledge of a local. We got back eventually with a combination of hand gestures and something that I am now pretty sure was a rain dance. For the future, though I would not mind Mymanus live translation feature to ease the way.

3. Popit

Popit ensures you never forget to take your birth control pills.

Everyday life alone is hectic enough and being on the move means it’s even easier to forget things. Popit will help you with this seemingly small but essential task, making this one less thing to worry about while traveling!

4. iLost

iLost digitizes and connects lost and found ‘cardboard boxes’ on behalf of organizations and reuniting rightful owners with their cherished possessions.

I am proud to say that I have never lost anything vital on my travels – yet.  But a lot of my friends have. When I found out that iLost was working together with the main public transport operator in Amsterdam, I felt instantly more chill about exploring the city. Now I take pictures of the cats I meet on my way to work, instead of worrying about losing my public transport card.

5. 4Suites

Intelligent access control for hotels, real estate agents and home owners where physical keys, access cards, and access codes are replaced by smartphones.

While 4Suites is mainly for hotels, I would have wished for this for every Airbnb I have booked so far. Standing in front of a locked door in the middle of the night is just not a travel experience I am keen to relive.

+1 MediSponsor

Medisponsor helps to bring Doctors and patients together in regions where health care is less accessible and thrives to make procedures and payments more transparent.  

While not technically aiding everyday travels, medisponsor still has the potential to bring the crucial topic of healthcare to a global level and deserves an honorable mention. Their platform strives to make healthcare more accessible for low-income countries, by providing information about procedures, funding and medical professionals available within their own and nearby states.

Every year TNW Conference curates and selects the most promising up and coming startups to come exhibit at its conference. If you are ready to boost your access to capital, customers and partners join us at #TNW2017! Sign-ups close the 15th of April.