“What’s your travel personality?” It seemed a simple question, but for the founders of Trazzler.com, it was one not being addressed by any existing online travel site. Despite the proliferation of travel reference sites filled with logistical information, voluminous tourist bureau propaganda, and requisite guidebooks written by a handful of writers who may or may not have personally visited the places they reviewed, the folks at Trazzler believed something was missing. That something was fun!
Trazzler knew there were thousands of travelers just itching to write about their experiences, but they had no interest in lengthy travelogue articles. Instead, they challenged travelers to describe their favorite trip in 150 words or less, focusing on very specific moments that made the destination so special. Travelers wholeheartedly embraced the concept and within a very short time, thousands of “trips” had been produced, including 28 trips that I eventually wrote for Trazzler.
Meanwhile, readers began browsing through the easy to read trips – an activity dubbed “trazzling” – and adding their favorites to a wish list. Trazzler soon partnered with Facebook, which allowed readers to share their favorite trips with friends. And this is where it gets really interesting. As readers trazzle – clicking “skip to next” or “add to wish list” – Trazzler gets to know each user’s travel personality and begins to recommend trips that may be of interest. At the moment, recommendations are heavily weighted toward weekend trips close to home, but this will change. As their technology improves, Trazzler will begin to make suitable recommendations for destinations around the world.
Trazzler’s mission is to “free people from the distractions and cruft of online travel research.” They challenge the readers to flip through their trip pages while asking, “Where would I rather be right now?” There’s no doubt about it; Trazzler has put fun back into the process of deciding where to travel.