New SA fintech startup aims to make travel affordable

South African-founded travel-focused fintech Wunderlust aims to make travel more affordable to locals by offering monthly installment payments for local and international flights. 

 Wunderlust’s platform enables locals to pay for flights with monthly installments

In an interview with Ventureburn, Dylan Solarsh, co-founder of Wunderlust provides insight into what led to the creation of the inventive startup. 

“Personal experience with friends; who landed up missing trips, family events and crucial moments because they could not afford the upfront travel costs. After seeing this happen to so many people it became clear that people were always putting off travel for a future date which never seemed to arrive. Life was passing them by! We conceptualised how best we can allow people to travel and thus Wunderlust was born. This offering allows people to do the things that matter most instead of spending their money on material goods.” 

Wunderlust

Founded by Dylan Solarsh and Dylan van der Merwe, Wunderlust officially launched in December 2020. 

Wunderlust aims to make travel accessible to anyone with its monthly installment repayment system for flights. 

“‘For families looking to reunite or go on a well-deserved holiday; to young professionals looking to travel abroad and opening the landscape for people who have never had the opportunity to experience the joy of travel. We are for everyone. We want to be the service that enables these moments to happen,” explains Solarsh.

The travel fintech startup has reportedly received funding from an angel investor at the idea stage of development. 

How does it work?

Users are prompted to conduct a credit application process when booking their flights for travel. The startup’s unique platform has made this process simple and easy.

Users are able to maintain their credit card facility and use it while visiting their destination.

“In time, with scale, Wunderlust will be a much cheaper option for financing travel compared to financing it on your credit card,” adds Solarsh.

The process is fully transparent and users are charged interest on the ticket price when financed over a period of six to 12 months. This interest reportedly varies from 9,5% to 15%, depending on a user’s credit score. An additional monthly fee is charged to users for managing the booking.

In order to secure a successful application on the platform to purchase flight tickets, users must be over the age of 18, a South African citizen, employed and have a good credit score.

Partnering with top players in the travel industry, the Wunderlust platform is completely custom built featuring airlines, flight purchases, credit verifications, and loan management, making it a one-stop-shop for all a user’s flight needs.

When asked about the future of the startup, Solarsh explains that the company plans to expand its offering. 

“We are an ambitious company with International aspirations. We are planning to expand our product offering to include accommodation, trip packages, rental cars, and travel insurance. We plan to finance the entire travel journey all with the goal of making travel affordable!”

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Featured image: Dylan Solarsh and Dylan van der Merwe, founders of Wunderlust (Supplied)

Ishani Chetty: Editor
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