Where Are They Now – Get Started Omaha Winner David Chait of Travefy

The Beginning  

Travelling is one of human’s most favorite pastimes and allows them to create some of the greatest memories. Sometimes it is just necessary for the job. Nonetheless, the common denominator associated with traveling is the pain that comes with planning, itineraries, bookings, and more. Travefy is the solution.

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They are a company dedicated to providing tools for travel professionals to create experiences their customers love. They build out itinerary management and client communications tools for travel professionals that save time and impress clients. Their tools currently power thousands of travel businesses ranging from independent travel advisors and operators to some of the largest travel management companies. Travefy helps groups organize trips from idea to execution. From that experience, the Travefy team has learned about everything from bachelor party trends to group psychology. Those insights provide a unique value to major companies in the travel industry.  

David Chait, the founder, and CEO says, “We started Travefy because we knew there were fundamental changes that needed to be made within the traveling process. We found that there was a lot of frustration with coordinating groups and tracking payments, so we worked to discover the solution. Travefy was that solution.” 

Starting Travefy was not an easy task, though. They had to work on building the client communication software in order for the company to function business-to-business. They consistently rely on data from users and gaining an understanding and consensus of what features worked best and which ones did not. This allows the team to create the overall best experience for customers. In the Fall of 2015, they were able to create an MVP Version for travel professionals to share and take part in as they are expanding more.  

Online travel planning is an appealing industry in more ways than one. It allows customers to save time and be more efficient. Chait says it’s appealing to Travefy because, “I am an avid traveler, and I relate to the pain points of the customers. This industry allows my team to have fertile ground for innovation and solve problems related to the issue. We have a model and utilize automated emails in order to constantly have feedback and try to create the best experience possible for our users. We truly depend on data and quantitative research in order to identify ways we can improve and be the best solution for our customers.”  

Since Winning Get Started 

Travefy won the Get Started Omaha pitch competition in 2014, and since then has grown exponentially. Their team has doubled in size, their revenue has exceeded seven figures, and they have continued to create better and fundamental software. Travefy has also been featured in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, and FastCompany among other publications and won the Brand USA Marketing Innovation Award at Phocuswright 2015 among other awards. 

“The biggest obstacles the team has faced since the win is what every startup experiences. The feeling of when you take one step forward, and three steps back. But it is always important to remain motivated because it works itself out.” says Chait.  

What’s Up Next?  

Up next, Travefy is looking to grow and scale their market. They are looking to travel to 1,000 new companies/areas, advance the level of service, get in front of payments, continue to make the quoting and itinerary process easier and more enjoyable for the users, and increase market share.  

If you are looking to start your own small business, Chait says, “Go for it, but learn. Use your passion, put it out there and look at the data. Then see where you should go from there.”