The last few months have been busy…

Some traveling, some game designing, some writing (What the Florida), and some thinking about the future. We’re in Bucharest, Romania as this post is published — a city where the buildings haven’t impressed, but the people have. There’s plenty of English, especially among the more entrepreneurial types (that Tour of Communism was done in great English, for example), or those that actively seek international connections.

It’s the future I was thinking of when I meandered over to Product Hunt (and through my inbox) to see what’s cooking in the world of travel / travel tech.

Interact Quiz Builder – make quizzes, collect info, and more

Let’s start with something fun:

Powered by 6 startups travelers and digital nomads should watch (mid-2017 edition) ()

This is one of their sample quizzes, but the ability to make something like it is a few clicks and minutes away. Change the questions, make new results, or add an opt-in form (it’s off in the above example, don’t worry). There’s a ‘free forever’ version that has most of the bells and whistles, but won’t let you collect e-mails or use your own branding. Use their 7-day trial of paid plans if you prefer to take the training wheels. They make polls, too, in case you need that.

More details at tryinteract.com.

Williams & Harricks – paper letters sent when clients don’t pay

6 startups travelers and digital nomads should watch (mid-2017 edition) ()

Travelers of the entrepreneurial or digital nomad nature have clients, and some of them may be slow to pay. This, of course, always seems to happen when you need the paycheck (Paypal deposit?) the most.

Spend $3 to get a real / physical / paper letter mailed to your client anywhere in the world stating your desire to get paid. Choose from a few templates ranging from ‘friendly reminder’ to ‘stern warning’, then customize the details.

Worth noting: this is not a law firm (despite the law-firm-sounding name), and mailing letters is all they can do to help you on this one. You’ll need to contact a real lawyer if your problems aren’t solved by a paper letter.

More details at https://www.and.co/williams-harricks.

Nomadlist – drill down into data, baby!

6 startups travelers and digital nomads should watch (mid-2017 edition) ()

It’s been around for years now, but nomadlist.com is still one of the best sources of numbers and data to help you find a perfect place to go. If you checked it out a long time ago and bookmarked it, it’s time for a fresh look. Click that ‘More Filters’ button to narrow the field of hundreds of cities based on ‘Tinder Friendly’ ‘Without Mosquitos’, ‘Walkable’, and even ‘Legal Weed’. (Note these filters rely on tags given to each city, and won’t necessarily include each appropriate city. Help your favorite cities out by tagging them.)

I have minor quibbles with some of the numbers (Bangkok’s internet was not 40 MBPS when I lived there in 2015), but I’ll also freely accept that numbers like that are presumably coming from locally-done speedtests rather than being pulled out of someone’s rear. It’s a completely free service, and you can mix and mash the data up in hundreds of ways.

Learn more at nomadlist.com.

Viahero – personalized itineraries for everyone

6 startups travelers and digital nomads should watch (mid-2017 edition) ()

$25 a day for planned, personalized itineraries from experts (and yes, I’m one of them). They come complete with offline maps, and all the details for your trip are organized inside an app. Yeah, I make itineraries and I write books, but sometimes you want something a bit more personal. As one of their experts, I’m tasked with ensuring itineraries are unique and fit you like a glove. I’ve seen some companies like it in the past, but this one seems to be in the sweet spot of pricing and product. Oh, and did I mention it was recently mentioned in the New York Times?

Learn more at viahero.com.

Solve – expediting security and comfort at the airport for a price

6 startups travelers and digital nomads should watch (mid-2017 edition) ()

Seen on Product Hunt in late June 2017, this concierge service aims to whisk you into all those ‘Preferred’ parts of airline security, immigration, customs, reclaiming VAT refunds, finding or getting access to airport lounges, and duty-free shopping (like you needed ‘help’ with that last part). They work with departures, connections, and arrivals, meaning you can book the one part of your trip you’re most likely to need with.

The pricing is high for what amounts to a glorified luggage handler that can’t actually guarantee any Preferred statuses or perks, however. Also, all services look to be provided with a ‘we’ll do the best we can’ caveat. It’s not for me, but maybe it’s for you.

Learn more at solve.com.

Travelshift – make your own tour-selling platform

6 startups travelers and digital nomads should watch (mid-2017 edition) ()

I’m not sure how many people want to build a tourism marketplace, but that’s what Travelshift offers: “Travelshift software allows your company to effortlessly build a thriving online marketplace for travel bookings and community led tourist information.” They look to be in the early phases (meaning you’ll need to contact them to learn about pricing and see their demo) but holds up guidetoiceland.is as a great example of their tech. If you’ve ever wanted to start a platform to sell tours for your city / country, it looks sharp and bundles all the tech stuff into one package.

More info at travelshift.com.

What have you found in the travel / travel tech / ‘helps travelers do something’ field? Comments are open.

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Also published on Medium.