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Summer Update – More for your 2011-2012 Golf Trips!!!

August 21st, 2011 by tripcaddie

Hope your summer is going well. It is almost that time again to start thinking of your golf trip for this winter. Did you know that the majority of American golf trips are booked between October and May? Hopefully, you are starting to kick around some ideas for a trip. Try using a Tour Operator. They have the keys to some of the best deals around and they do most of the work of booking the tee times and getting the complete stay and play packages!
We have been preparing as well and wanted to share a few updates we have done to the site to make your experience better. Thanks to all of the feedback we have received. This release has many of your suggestions and a few of our own. We would love to hear your feedback any time. Shoot us a note at contactus@tripcaddie *dot* com.

UPDATES:

Among some various bug fixes, here are some key updates:

Trip Invitation Process – This is the biggest fix in this release. We have streamlined the process so now you can invite your participants without the worry of using a wrong email address. Send the invite to the email address that you have, then the participant can sort out which address he/she would like to use after login – more headaches alleviated. Just remember you still cannot forward around the invitation; everyone gets their own.

Customer Service Tab – Here is an easy way to contact us if you have a question about the site. Email or Call, we are here for you!!!

Handicap Index – Now your handicap shows everywhere on the site so parings are easier. Updating yours is a snap, just click on the HCI? link and you can update right there. Help your Trip Leader by updating yours…

Pairings Update – In addition to now showing the Handicap Index, we have enhanced the 5th player function, added a save button on each round and removed nicknames in the pairings drop-downs. We fixed a few bugs in the pairings drop-downs too. Just trying to keep it simple and fun!

Paid and UnPaid Status – Now you can track who has paid and who hasn’t. There is a lot of money floating out there in the group and we have added a feature to help you keep track better. A little peer pressure has been added to the mix… “Come on Mikey, pay up already!”

Return to Trip Home – Finally, an enhancement to the flow. We have two buttons on the site that should help you navigate better. A back button and a new Back to Trip Home button. They are what they say they are… that should help!

Have a great rest of the summer and we look forward to having you on TripCaddie this Fall and Winter!

The TripCaddie Team

TripCaddie Update 2.1

February 20th, 2011 by tripcaddie

Hi Everyone!

We are taking some time to announce our updates to the site in blog form so you can stay informed.  We have been getting some terrific feedback through the feedback link on the homepage.  We appreciate all of the comments as we try to make the site better for you.  Overall, we have been getting some great feedback all around with some of the best coming from the 2011 PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando.  Keep the feedback coming, please don’t be shy – good, bad or just a hello, it is always great to hear from you.

Here are the latest Updates in 2.1:

  • International Trips: We are pleased to announce that we have improved the Trip Destination field on the Plan a New Trip function so you can plan an international trip to anywhere in the world!  This is the topic with the most feedback we have received.   Well deserved, but we have worked through a little glitch and it is good to go.  One thing to note, we are still improving our weather widget so you can see the weather outside the US.  That should be ready by our next release.
  • Tee Times and Pairings Report: We have added the capability to print your Tee Times and Pairings in an easy to read format so you can bring them to the course.  This new feature is sure to help you and your group to be better organized.
  • Anonymity on Home Page: We felt it best not to display any last names on the home page for when you are using planning and/or social features on the site.  Since we don’t sell email addresses, it best to protect you by not showing your last name.  Hope you appreciate that.  Oh, if you use a nickname on the site, that will be displayed instead of first name, last initial.  ENJOY!
  • Activity Time Inconsistencies: We thought we caught all of those issues, but a few have cropped up here and there.  An activity time or tee time was showing an hour later than what you specified in some places.  We think we got them all, but let us know if not.
  • Weather Widget formating:  Just a little formatting snafu… Sometimes the weather widget was only showing 5 days instead of 6 so that is fixed now.
  • Participant Annotations: We have provided an update that will assist the Trip Leader to simplify the way participants show their trip acceptance.
  • Tool Tip for Invitations: The text under the field for adding emails to the invitation was updated so it is clear you can only add 10 peoples email addresses at a time.  To invite the next 10 people submit the first 10 then access again to invite the next 10 and so on…

There were a few other minor tweaks but these were the biggest ones.  Please use the feedback form on the homepage to continue to send in your comments, feature suggestions and bug reports so we can continue to make TripCaddie a great experience for everyone.

Tee It Up!
TripCaddie Technical Support Team!

Pleased but not Satisfied: TripCaddie Launches today…

November 19th, 2010 by tripcaddie

As of today November 18th, 2010 at 1:50am, www.TripCaddie.com became available to the public with a great launch.

Launching the website is very exciting but we know this is only the beginning.  I love the title of this post for two reasons.  First, it feels so good to say publicly that we are live – it has been a long time coming and a lot of blood, sweat and tears have been shed to make this happen.  Second, yet we are very pleased with the product and the launch; however, even though it meets the basic needs of our customer’s buddy trips, we are not satisfied with what this product offers to our customers in its current market state.  There is so much to do with this product to offer our customers a really great golf trip experience that we are just so excited to jump in and start working on the second release.

We know the annual buddy golf trip is, for many, the only real guys or girls get-away people have and how special it is to maximize that time with friends. Therefore, our primary mission is to relieve the stress from the planning so that you can get right to the giggly-anticipated-weeks, if not months, in advance of your trip. Then after to help you store those memories for quick recall trip after trip.

Now that we are live, the fun, and very important part, now begins as we start to build a solid brand and impeccable service so that TripCaddie becomes the only one-stop-shop for ALL buddy golf trips!  This is something we take very seriously so that we can earn your trust and continue to serve you and your buddies for years to come.

We hope you and your buddies enjoy TripCaddie and we appreciate any feedback and/or support you want to offer!  Our best compliments are ones where you feel compelled to suggest us to others!

Thanks again to everyone who has partnered, built, contributed, supported and fan’ed us while we put this together.  And a special THANK YOU to all of our new customers for visiting and showing your interest.  This is your site for you and your buddies, please let us know how we can satisfy you!

Tee It Up!
The TripCaddie Team

Jon Morse – President / Co-Founder
Ali Virani – Chief of Technology / Co-Founder
Ryan Byars – Master Business Developer / Co-Founder

How Does TripCaddie Work?

October 9th, 2010 by tripcaddie

We have been getting some very interesting inquiries about TripCaddie. Most of them have been questions about what is TripCaddie? What does it do? How does it work? Well, my friends, ask no more.
TripCaddie is an online tool that helps people plan their buddy golf trips. That is it! Simple.
To best describe how TripCaddie works, it is easiest to break it out in three components: Before the Trip, During the Trip and After the Trip. This is the first of 3 blog posts to explain how TripCaddie is the ONLY place to plan your buddy golf trip!
BEFORE YOUR TRIP
Let’s say you are going to Pinehurst with 8 of your old college buddies for 4 days. You have 4 rooms reserved at the resort. You plan to golf 36 holes a day and end each day with a nice dinner and drinks somewhere different each night. For this example, you are the person who puts it all together – we call you the Commissioner or Trip Leader.
To start, create a profile on TripCaddie (if you haven’t logged in before) and select “Plan a New Trip”. When you set up your trip you will name the golf trip something like “2010 Shankapotomus Golf Trip” and enter Pinehurst, NC for the city and state where you are going. You will also specify the date range of your trip. Now you have your private site ready to store all of the trip details in a single location. The next thing you do is invite your buddies to the site by sending an email to them through TripCaddie. They will receive an invitation and will need to accept it to gain exclusive access to your site. Once everyone is on the site, the fun begins.
As the Commissioner, you need to build the itinerary. You call Pinehurst and make your reservations with the resort directly, then enter each round into the itinerary. (You may want to check our tee time partner GolfNow™ first to see if you find any tee time deals!) The itinerary is just a prioritized list of activities, so you have to build it by adding activities to the itinerary. The first activity is on day 1 and it is the first round of golf where the tee times start at 8am. So you create a Golf activity and specify the course, date, time and other details about that round. You may want to meet for breakfast at 7am in the resort restaurant so you may want to create an activity for that. TripCaddie automatically places the activities in order by date and time. The next activity is Round 2, and the tee times begin at 1pm, but you need everyone to meet 30 minutes before, so you create an activity to get them there on time. Dinner reservations are at 7pm so you will add an activity for that too. You get the idea. Some groups may consider creating an activity on Day 1 as the reception and gathering time and that is okay; add it to the itinerary. Remember all activity dates and times can be changed up to the day before the trip’s start date.
Now, this example is assuming the group already knows where they are going and all the reservations are made. TripCaddie is setup so that it can accommodate even the less organized of groups. Upon creation, the Commissioner will have to put in some basic information about the Trip, but it can be changed later once the group figures out where it wants to go. These groups can discuss the trip details and make decisions collaboratively using the Wall, Discussion and Poll social features on your site. The Commissioner will just need to enter all results into the itinerary after there is consensus.
Once the itinerary is set and everyone agrees to it, the Commissioner can begin building the pairings and collecting other information from the group. The others can start making their travel arrangements to North Carolina using TripCaddie’s travel partner Orbitz™ and communicating with each other about schedules, accommodations and logistics. The Commissioner can collect and enter important information into the accommodations and logistics areas of the itinerary so everyone has it in neatly in one location.
After the Pairings are made, TripCaddie automatically prepares the group’s Leaderboard and Strudel. The Leaderboard is setup to be as simple as possible to track the scores for each player for each round. TripCaddie wanted to keep the data entry time low by only building facilities to enter scores for the front 9 total, back 9 total and the round total. Once the round information is updated by the Commissioner, the Leaderboard begins to sort the golfers in the group by lowest scores. Enter scores after each round and the Leaderboard will show a cumulative summary of the entire trip.
The Strudel is the trip accountant. This allows the expenses and side bet winnings on the trip to be distributed appropriately to all members of the trip so each person knows how much they owe or is owed to/from the other participants. The Strudel works like an expense report. Each person is responsible for entering their own expenses. The Commissioner is responsible for tracking and entering the purse money collected at the beginning of the trip and the winnings distribution after the trip into the Strudel.
Now that the majority of the planning is done, the group can enjoy anticipating the trip together by engaging in friendly banter (“trash-talking) on the wall and checking the weather and reviewing the maps of the Pinehurst area. The group can also explore the Games and Jokes section on TripCaddie to get ideas on side-game formats to play or arming themselves with some great jokes to take with them. Finally, don’t forget to gear up in the TripCaddie Pro Shop offering our hand-selected list of golf vendors offering the very best golf accessories, gadgets, equipment, cigars, trophy’s and apparel at great prices.
Just before everyone starts to head to Pinehurst, the Commissioner can print the Tee Times sheet and itinerary and each person can print their own copy of the itinerary so they are ready to be where they need to be ON TIME!!!
Check back soon for the next segment: DURING YOUR TRIP

Introducing TripCaddie.com… Where Buddies PLAN Golf Trips!

October 9th, 2010 by tripcaddie

You grab your driver, a tee and a ball (ok maybe two). You walk confidently onto the tee box and sink your tee into the firm but dewy ground. As you line up to your ball, thoughts race through your mind, “head down”, “knees bent”, “arms straight”. Focusing on a single dimple on the ball, you say to yourself, “This year is going to be different”… You are ready! Laser focused, you draw skillfully into your backswing… Just as you start down… “NOOONAN!!!!” slices through your skull like your driver as it snap-hooks the ball through an empty golf cart, ricocheting off a rock and landing 10 yards behind the ladies tee. The roar of your 15 buddies behind you laughing hysterically while you shank the first tee shot of the buddy golf trip!
Knowing they were going to do that, you gracefully re-tee and you think to yourself, “Nope, this year is NO different” while silently kicking yourself for thinking this was going to be a mature, golf get-away with your buddies….”
It’s time to plan the annual golf trip that keeps your buddies connected.
Plan….hmmmm. That means:
• email everyone you want to be there
• determine a date that will work (email, text, call, IM, chat, etc.)
• oh yea…pick a place to golf, stay, eat, sleep… every day for 4 days!
• how will we get there?
• create pairings
• split the costs
I thought this was supposed to be fun and relaxing!
If you are anything like me, and have been the commissioner of a golf trip, it can be quite stressful and far from relaxing!
Those days are over! Now it is FUN, INTERACTIVE and EASY! We are so excited to bring you TripCaddie.com, a one of a kind, social media-based golf trip planning tool. With this easy to use website, you can plan every aspect of your golf trip with your buddies and use the features to help remember it forever.
TripCaddie.com offers you and your golf buddies the convenience of a central hub to plan, communicate, chat, book travel and remember one of the best weeks of the year…your buddy golf trip! It offers exclusive features for your group to view and book prime golf destinations then build an itinerary, pairings, and scoring while capturing the moments with custom photo and video albums and so much more. TripCaddie.com wants to help you achieve the ultimate golf trip experienceand the ability to track and access the memories year over year.
Additionally, TripCaddie.com offers a true social media experience that is unique and valuable to every golf group. Not only can your group collaborate directly on the site using the trip wall, polls and discussions; your group can access the community of all of the other golf groups on the site that share information on how to make trips better. TripCaddie.com provides community features highlighting trip planning discussions, games, jokes and ratings for destinations. When your itinerary is set, TripCaddie.com offers easy booking of flights, hotels and cars using the powerful Orbitz travel technology.
Come plan a trip with TripCaddie.com. Lock in your scores on each round and remind your buddy who won in match play! Settle the wagers and trip finances using the Strudel. Win a trophy to archive in the virtual trophy room and hold bragging rights over your buddies forever! This is the Fantasy Football site of buddy golf trips. You will be able to track, store and access all of your golf trips, year after year. For duffers to scratch golfers, it works great for multiple day golf trips or single day golf outings.
So take a deep breath, take your second shot from behind the ladies tee with pride. This year WILL BE different when you let TripCaddie.com take away the stress of planning your buddy golf trip so you and your buddies can remember the trip forever! Can you feel it? Golf is in the air. Tee it up!
TripCaddie.com is coming in May 2010!
Leave some feedback about the TripCaddie concept. We’d love to hear from you.