Lonely Planet’s new app of­fers travel in­spi­ra­tions

Be in­spired or tell your own story

Sun.Star Cebu Weekend - - Content - Text: BETH J. HARPAZ AP Travel Editor

NEW YORK — Lonely Planet has a new free app called Trips that of­fers in­spi­ra­tion for travel, along with an easy way for users to cre­ate vis­ually driven sto­ries about their own trips.

“We’re giv­ing the com­mu­nity the abil­ity to cre­ate travel con­tent and to be in­spired by it,” said Lonely Planet CEO Daniel Houghton in an in­ter­view for The As­so­ci­ated Press travel pod­cast “Get Outta Here .”

For in­spi­ra­tion, scroll through con­tent cu­rated by Lonely Planet’s editorial team in eight cat­e­gories: ad­ven­ture, wildlife and nature, coasts and is­lands, ruins, road trips, fes­ti­vals and events, hik­ing and cities.

Or up­load your own pho­tos and video about a place or travel ex­pe­ri­ence to cre­ate your own story. Add text, de­cide which im­age to use for a cover photo, write a head­line and you’ve created a travel story with a sump­tu­ous, pro­fes­sional look and lay­out. It’s also easy to edit or delete the story — even af­ter you’ve pub­lished it.

You can also send a Trips story by email or mes­sage as a click­able link for friends and fam­ily to see, or you can post them on sites like Twit­ter or Face­book.

You can keep your trips pri­vate and only share with se­lected friends and fam­ily. Or you can opt to make your trips pub­lic. If you do make them pub­lic, they can be seen by any­one who chooses to fol­low you. But your pub­lic trips won’t be shown as part of the app’s cu­rated con­tent un­less it’s cho­sen by Lonely Planet’s editorial team to be fea­tured. (The app no­ti­fies you if your post is se­lected.)

The app doesn’t cur­rently have a search func­tion where you can look for con­tent by des­ti­na­tion, but that may be added later.

Houghton noted that Trips is Lonely Planet’s sec­ond ma­jor new mo­bile prod­uct, with the first one be­ing an off­line map­ping app called Guides.

Houghton be­came CEO of Lonely Planet about four years ago at the rel­a­tively young age of 24. He em­pha­sized the com­pany’s con­tin­u­ing com­mit­ment to print prod­ucts — guide­books, mag­a­zines and cof­fee-ta­ble books — while at the same time putting “sig­nif­i­cant en­ergy and in­vest­ment and time and ef­fort into re­ally be­ing prom­i­nent as a dig­i­tal busi­ness.”

The Trips app is de­signed for per­sonal, non­com­mer­cial use and guide­lines ban posts that ad­ver­tise prod­ucts or ser­vices. Users re­main the own­ers of the pho­tos they up­load, though they grant Lonely Planet per­mis­sion to use the con­tent.

The app also has a link to trips con­trib­uted by pho­tog­ra­phers from Un­splash, a site for rights-free im­ages.

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