Pando

GateGuru Adds Capital to Make Air Travel Less of a Headache, More "Magical"

By Erin Griffith , written on August 28, 2012

From The News Desk

It's safe to say there's nothing magical about airport bag checks, airport security lines, or airport food courts. They're a pain, even to the most seasoned traveler.

The makers of GateGuru believe that doesn't have to be the case.

The app, originally developed to smooth out the annoying parts of the airport experience, is widening its focus to encompass the entire day of travel. The goal is to make traveling less of a headache and more "magical," co-founder and CEO Dan Gellert says. Air travel in the '50s and '60s had an air of magic to it. Now the experience is anything but.

GateGuru added six figures of new angel investments to its previous $800,000 to make that happen. New investors in the round include Dave Morgan and Zachary Aarons. The company will roll out the new version of its its airport guide app in the next three months, Gellert says. The updated version will include specific functions that help a user beyond airport information.

Most importantly, the new version will include GateGuru's monetization plan. The company will announce a partnership with a major car rental place that will include dynamic pricing based on available inventory. The company will pursue partnerships with travel suppliers like cab service Uber or last-minute booking app HotelTonight.

GateGuru is already a hit, if you've read any list of must-have travels apps this summer. The app has been named on just about every one of them. It's amassed 900,000 users. It's comprehensive, useful (how many times do you almost miss a connection because you're lost trying to find your gate?) and -- shocker -- actually available on Android and Windows Phone.

Co-founded by former venture capitalist Gellert (Time Warner Investments) and former Yahoo Product Manager Jeff Arena, the app launched in 2009. The current version is basically a comprehensive airport guide that includes itineraries and other flight information like weather, terminal check-in location, security wait times, flight status, and amenities.

It's the kind of app that turns a casual traveler into an old hand, suddenly armed with info on where the best airport bar is, the fastest security line is, and the best route to your transfer is.

GateGuru's an $800,000 seed round was funded by Allen Morgan of Mayfield Fund, Chamath Palihapitiya of Social+Capital Partnership, Former Thomson Reuters CEO Tom Glocer, founder of Gerson Lehrman Group Thomas Lehrman, founder of Seatguru.com Matthew Daimler, and BVH founder Bradley Harrison.