About a week ago, Chris and I “launched” TravelStash. By “launched” I mean we have now opened it up for general consumption. Anyone can join TravelStash and use it just like Rheanna and Sanjay did on their recent South Africa trip, Margaret and Alan have on their trip around the South Island of New Zealand and of course, how Chris and I have consistently used it to keep our friends and family updated on all our travels over the past couple of years.
TravelStash started off a few years ago as a simple travel blog with a map on it. At that time there were no blogging engines available that allowed one to map their travels, something I was very interested in since I was working for a mapping company at the time. So, I decided to build one from scratch. I won’t deny it, it’s been hard work, but since then, we’ve built a lot of cool features (read: we’ve spent and continue to spend a lot of time on it!) and TravelStash has grown into a fully functional travel blog (still with a map!). What makes TravelStash a little different to other travel blogging sites out there is that it allows members to sign up as part of a ‘group’ and create separate ‘trips’ for each of their holidays that they can then ‘blog’ under. Members can upload as many photos as they like to each of their blog posts using a really advanced photo upload mechanism designed to facilitate photo management as much as possible. Aside from their travel stories, members can use TravelStash as a bookmarking tool to save links or travel ideas, something that we have chosen to call a ‘wishlist’. You can even save your wishlist to a PDF file so you can quickly and easily print your bookmarked ideas to paper and take them with you on your next adventure. Then there are ‘travel tips’ – quick little snippets of travel advice that members can write up…
Basically, there’s a lot of neat stuff already built into TravelStash and we are constantly thinking of new enhancements for it. The latest addition has been the ability to notify your facebook account (if you have one) when you publish an article or a wishlist item in TravelStash. That way, if for some strange reason your friends and family haven’t subscribed to your TravelStash RSS feed and aren’t obsessively hitting your TravelStash group or trip pages to see what you’re up to, you can still let them know by posting a small note to your facebook wall and your friend’s news feeds when you publish a new travel post or wishlist item. We’ll soon be extending this to travel tips too, just to be consistent.
Another feature we’ll be releasing soon is the ability to save an entire trip (photos, map, blog posts and comments) to MS Word or PDF format. This will enable you to save your holiday stories and memories in a format which you can then print out and make a book out of. If you save it to MS Word you then have the ability to edit and alter the way it all looks and could even take it down to a print shop to have professionally printed and bound into a beautiful coffee table book.
In any case, at this stage TravelStash is 100% free to use and has no ads. We think it’s pretty cool (ok, that’s a bit of an understatement… we think it’s freakin’ AWESOME!) and encourage everyone to create an account and use it on their next holiday. :)