Like many growing startups, the story behind Utrip starts with a vision to create a better experience for consumers.
Chief Executive Gilad Berenstein founded the company in 2012 after a trip to Europe inspired him to change the way people plan travel. Using artificial intelligence, human experience and local expertise, the travel-planning site helps visitors have a fun and stress-free vacation planning experience.
“Our platform sorts through millions of possibilities to create an experience that’s really personal for them,” he says.
Utrip’s technology optimizes travel itineraries based on a user’s preferences, budget, geography and other relevant factors, sorting through millions of options, such as must-see sights, activities, events and restaurants.
The Challenges of Growth
As Utrip began to grow, the Seattle-based company faced a challenge of providing employee benefits for potential new hires that would match the kind of offers coming from larger companies.
Although Utrip was lucky in its early years to have staff young enough to stay on their parents’ insurance plans, by 2014 the company had grown big enough that it was time to consider options for employee benefits.
“After raising our first significant round of funding, we knew it was time to offer our team the best benefits, especially insurance,” Berenstein says.
“I learned about ALLtech from a fellow entrepreneur who used the system and liked it a lot,” Berenstein says. “We signed up because it was easy, affordable and made perfect sense for a startup like Utrip.”
The Benefits of a Geekwire Plan
As Berenstein reviewed the available options he was glad it was supported by GeekWire and surprised by the variety of plan choices and the quality of the insurance providers. ALLtech offers medical plans from Regence BlueShield/Asuris Northwest Health, dental plans from Delta Dental of Washington and vision care from VSP Vision Care Inc.
The ALLtech health plan is just one of the many benefits that he now offers his team as a result of joining GeekWire.
“GeekWire is such an important part of Seattle’s tech ecosystem,” Berenstein says. “GeekWire events have helped us learn from and connect with others.”
Berenstein is also grateful to GeekWire for its groundbreaking coverage of national technology news.
“Its coverage of Utrip has helped us raise funds, sign local clients and increase our visibility in the local region,” he says.