Inspiration

College students nowadays are definitely in need of a simple money-saving app. With limited funds and high tuition fees, they tend to have very limited money for extra expenses. However, the city and the events in it is a crucial part of the college experience. We hope to help college students plan a fun trip to explore the city while also saving money.

As a student from Columbia University, I have constantly faced the weekend dilemma. I am always fascinated by the theaters and Broadway events, However, I am also afraid to do so because of going to downtown can cost an awful lot of money. In addition, I don't usually have time to carefully research and plan those trips. Therefore, I really need a software that plans the fun weekend getaways and provide me with affordable solutions.

Function

Our app uses the Ticketmaster api that searches for all the discount ticket deals within a certain radius of the user's location. The tickets are for events including movies, performances and concerts. The user can specify the type of events he/she hope to attend. We also use the transit data from google directions api and fetch the cost of the two-way trip. The transit cost and the ticket cost are added together and sorted to offer the users a list of cheapest weekend trips.

Recognizing student's need to dine after/before attending events, we then search around the event venue for a list of affordable and quality food. The restaurants are searched with the Yelp api.

Once the user decides on the event and the restaurant, the app automatically plans the trip for him/her. It shows the directions. It also provides links to the specific ticket ordering sites.

Platform

The app is built for Android with Angular.js and the Ionic framework. The app can also be extended to ios usage with some modification of codes.

The app uses the Google Maps, Google Directions, TicketMaster, and the Yelp api.

Problems

The Google Directions api only allows a specific number of queries per second (for the free version). Therefore the app might work more slowly than expected.

Accomplishments

The app is very easy to use and customized for the user. This especially suits the needs of college students that just want to explore the city and social scene without spending much money or time.

Plan for Future Development

The UI of the app can be further refined and built to suit the need of more ios and android platforms.

More api can be used to construct a more comprehensive database. Suggestions of ticket discounts can be made cross-referencing the various different data sources. More accurate transition data can be tailored for users in specific areas where the public api is available.

More features for personal customization. With a larger database of users, we can include machine learning to optimize suggestions for the user.

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