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Designing for travel in a world of uncertainty

Max Gustofson
Jul 1 · 3 min read

In times like these, it’s hard to imagine what the future of travel will look like. Air travel may never be the same. Travel by train? Who knows. Even public transit may take on a different shape with the workforce moving towards remote positions and further away from big cities.

While it’s hard to know what travel will look like, or when it will return, one thing is for sure: people will continue to get outdoors. As more cities, parks, and places of gathering open up , the outdoors become the most viable, healthy alternative to traveling anywhere else.

Luckily the easiest way to escape and get outdoors is in an RV, and that’s what where we come in.

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1910 66 h.p. Pierce-Arrow Touring Landau

On the surface, Outdoorsy is an RV rental marketplace. If you dig deeper, you’ll find some big hairy problems we’re solving, like inventing new traditions, inspiring everlasting exploration, and connecting communities. Ultimately we are in the business of empowering RV owners while unlocking the quintessential outdoor experience for all. With these insights, you’ll have a better sense for what we’re all about:

  • Inventing new traditions — To many, going on an RV trip for the first time can be daunting. By designing an experience that enables you to discover what the world has to offer, how to get there (comfortably), and what to see, we help create memories and a renewed connection with nature.
  • Inspiring everlasting exploration — Did you know that in the United States alone there are over 10k state and national parks and 20.5 million acres of public land that are free to explore? That means if you visited 10 parks a year, it’d take you 1000 years to visit them all. There’s a new adventure around every corner and we’ll help you find it.
  • Two-sided marketplace — Thousands of different folks use Outdoorsy. Most are people who are completely new to the world of RV-ing, and then there are folks who are always seeking new rigs to try. Owners tend to have different goals like earning extra income and meeting like-minded individuals. Enabling connections and knowledge sharing across the platform is one of the most challenging, yet rewarding aspects of the product.
  • Trust & Safety — Owners rely on us to protect their vehicles on the platform, and it’s our responsibility to make sure we do this effectively. To Owners, it can be scary not knowing who will be taking your $100k+ camper van for a trip to the desert. It’s our role to help owners build trust in our product and customers.
  • What’s ahead— The future of outdoor travel is especially exciting, as there are always new things to see and experience. We believe there’s an opportunity to make the outdoor experience something spectacular and memorable, beyond a transaction.

This is just a glimpse into the world of unique and exciting challenges we tackle together everyday. There is still much to learn (and we are always learning) but we can’t be more thrilled with the road ahead.

So now you should be asking yourself, where do I explore next?

Interested in tackling these exciting challenges with us? We are hiring.

Building Outdoorsy

Stories from Outdoorsy’s product, design, and engineering…

Thanks to Andrew Tucker and Brian Clancy

Max Gustofson

Written by

Director of Design @Outdoorsy – Previously Lyft, Earnest, Designlab, Apple, etc. Always happy to chat.

Building Outdoorsy

Stories from Outdoorsy’s product, design, and engineering teams

Max Gustofson

Written by

Director of Design @Outdoorsy – Previously Lyft, Earnest, Designlab, Apple, etc. Always happy to chat.

Building Outdoorsy

Stories from Outdoorsy’s product, design, and engineering teams

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