TripSafe Debuts Smartphone-Controlled Security for Travelers in Hotels

Developed by a squad of veterans from several branches of the military, New York-based TripSafe on Tuesday unveiled a smartphone-controlled security monitoring system that alerts travelers, and others if they desire, to any unauthorized entry to their hotel rooms.

TripSafe is something like a travel version of other home monitoring systems, such as Canary, that are controlled by smartphones.

Detachable wedge sensors placed at the doors set off an alarm if someone tries to access the hotel room without the user’s permission, says CEO Derek Blumke. The wedge can also physically help block the door if someone tries to break in.

The base station for TripSafe includes a motion sensor, live video streaming of the room, smoke detection, and an audio sensor to detect glass breaking (in case someone forces their way in through a window). Blumke, an Air Force veteran, says the idea for TripSafe came to him on a business trip after finding himself booked in a hotel room that obviously had seen better days.

“It was apparent that someone not only had kicked the door in, they had kicked it down breach-style like a SWAT team,” he says.

Lacking any options to stay elsewhere because of a convention that was in town, Blumke kept his family constantly informed of his whereabouts and status. Even with his military background, he felt unnerved by the experience and wondered how other people might cope with such circumstances. “I started getting angry about it,” he says.

That led to the idea for TripSafe, which Blumke sees as a step up from panic buttons or sticking a chair under the doorknob.

Users can set protocols to alert their family, the front desk of the hotel, and local 911 emergency responders in case the alarm is triggered, he says. “If someone is in trouble, they don’t need to be scrambling trying to figure out who they should be getting help from,” Blumke says. “That will be our job.”

TripSafe is in the midst of closing a seed funding round, he says, with private and institutional investors. The company is also launching a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo to reach potential customers, Blumke says. The product is expected to ship early next year, and will retail for $179.

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