I recently interviewed Konrad Waliszewski on the Eat Well. Adventure Often. Podcast. Konrad is the CEO & Co-Founder of TripScout, a venture-backed travel company that has built one of the most popular travel entertainment and trip planning apps. He has visited approximately 100 countries and Forbes has called him a “modern-day Marco Polo.”
Positioned at the intersection of consumer trends and travel tech, Konrad is a regular speaker and thought leader about the future of travel.
During our interview, Konrad dished about everything from how he got started with his app, to his favorite travel experiences, and the must-have travel item on his list. Spoiler alert: It’s juicier than his favorite backpack brand!
Tell me about yourself and your travel app TripScout?
I’m a repeat Entreprenauer, but travel has always been my passion and obsession ever since I was a little kid. I was a political refugee. I spent a lot of time going back and forth between Europe and the U.S., so I caught the travel bug quite early.
Throughout my travels, I noticed that travel was undergoing a very fundamental change in our society. Our relationship with travel; why we travel, how we travel and what we hope to get out of the experience, have all shifted quite dramatically. If you look at every [travel] product and service along the way, nothing has really changed in about 20 years since it first came online.
So, we launched TripScout. What we do is create a personalized travel guide for the modern traveler. So if you’re going to a destination, you tell us a little bit about yourself and we pull all the best content from around the internet from top publishes down to local bloggers that might be harder to discover. Then we give you a feed of all the places and topics that we know you’ll find most interesting.
If you’re browsing the articles and see something that’s interesting you can save the article to your trip [within the app] and you can really craft the perfect trip and use the app to explore at the destination.
Where’s your favorite place to travel to?
I’ve been trying to find a succinct answer for what is my favorite place because it does change so much and it depends on the type of trip you want and who you’re with and what you’re looking for. So, I don’t think I could ever name a favorite place, it’s almost like naming a favorite kid.
There are a couple ways I can answer it. I think that one of the reasons I love to travel so much is for the same reason most people love to travel. It really pushes you outside of your comfort zone, it teaches you a lot about the world, it teaches you a lot about your self. You just get to see and experience something in a different way and I think that’s getting harder and harder as the world continues to get more developed.
So, there are two places that really stood out for me in regards to helping me see myself and see the world in a different way. One was Papa New Guinea. My friend and I just found some guy to take us on a tiny little motorized canoe boat […] and we just stopped at a bunch of random villages along the way and these were all villages that there were no tourists. We didn’t see one traveler the entire time and many of the places we stopped had never seen a traveler and that was just a really cool unique experience.
And then the other place would be Somaliland which is in Somalia […]. And again, it was just a very different place in the world and a different experience than I could have ever imagined.
The other way I like to answer this question… most of the time I think people are asking because they’re looking for ideas about where they should go. So, with that, I think some of the most underrated places in the world are Ethiopia, the country of Georgia and Mozambique. I think those are places that very rarely get the level of travelers some other more popular destinations do but are just fantastic places to travel to […] and all are very affordable […] and very safe.
What’s the one thing you can’t travel without?
Good question […]. I would actually say there’s not anything that I couldn’t travel without. I try and be as much as a minimalist traveler as I can. I regularly just take one clean pair of boxers, one clean pair of socks and then I wash what I am wearing when I get to my room and hang it up and wear the other pair the next day.
So, I wouldn’t say there’s anything I couldn’t travel without and certainly that wasn’t always the case. When I first started traveling I carried a big backpack and then it got smaller and smaller.
[…] For the sake of answering your question, the Nomatic backpack is an extremely good, efficient backpack and then […] there is Exofficio boxers […] they are super quick-dry and super comfortable. They’re the ultimate pair of boxers if you’re only traveling with one tiny backpack.
- Listen to the full interview now on Anchor or Spotify.
- Keep up with Konrad on his website GoKonrad.com and follow him on Instagram @gokonrad
- Download the TripScout app
Tell me everything!
Have you ever used TripScout? What are your favorite apps to use when traveling or planning a trip?