Hopper, an AI-driven prediction travel app that competes with Priceline and Expedia, is somewhat under the radar but actually has been around for over 3 years and has over 30 million users. Hopper founder and CEO Frederic Lalonde says that Hopper is fundamentally different because the app sees into the future.
“We’re fundamentally different because the Hopper app sees into the future. We were built on the premise of big data so we collect billions, actually 750 billion prices every month, and we track airfare predictively.”
Frederic Lalonde, CEO of Hopper, talks about Hopper and how it is fundamentally different than Priceline and Expedia in a recent interview.
New Round of Fundraising For International Growth
This round of fundraising is all about international growth for us. The Hopper app has been around for about three and a half years and on and off and it’s the number one travel app in the US. We have over 30 million users, but what’s really changed in the course of the last year is our pickup outside of North America.
There are markets like Europe, Southeast Asia, Australia, and Latin America where we’ve seen extraordinary growth, upwards of 300 percent year-over-year, because we’ve been adding inventory to the app. This latest funding puts us in a position to continue that growth and become the worldwide leader in mobile travel.
The Hopper App Sees Into the Future and Predicts Prices
We compete directly against anybody who sells travel online, that’s Priceline and Expedia, and those companies own all the brands that you’re using. We’re fundamentally different because the Hopper app sees into the future. We were built on the premise of big data so we collect billions, actually 750 billion prices every month, and we track airfare predictively. If a user is looking to go from New York to London, Hopper up to a year in advance will tell you the best day in the future to buy your airfare. we also do the same thing for hotels and we’re expanding.
We’ve been doing this for over a decade and we have proprietary algorithms that also operate. Fundamentally, Hopper is part of a new generation of commerce marketplaces that are deeply built on data and AI. You can see by the success of the platform that it’s different.
Hopper is Mobile Only
The other thing that makes us totally different is the fact that we’re only an app. We’re mobile only and the user experience is totally different because you’re letting the app do all of the heavy lifting for you. You’re saying when you want to travel and you can even leave that open and where you want to go and the app continuously tracks and shops all of these prices for you and you receive push notifications. For scale, we’ve sent about 2 billion push notifications to our users over the last two years.
The other things that we compete against are websites where you have to do all the work yourself. What we’ve seen because we track all the data is when we as human beings do this we end up on average paying 5 percent more than we would have if we bought the first price that we’ve seen.
Some people will score some deals, but on average we do much worse because we’re being tracked by cookies and the airline companies and the websites know that we’re doing this at predictable hours. The Hopper model does this for you and the outcomes are actually much better.