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Show HN: AirHelp flight scanner finds all past flights and checks for eligibility (airhelp.com)
35 points by henrikzillmer 11 months ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 37 comments



A quick pitch for Tripit. Although you can let Tripit scan your email, you can instead just forward airline and hotel receipts to it and it automatically parses the data. It then puts it in an iCal calendar that you can import to Google Calendar. Personally, I use a Zapier to copy the Tripit calendar entries into my main calendar so that my colleagues won't try to book me into meetings while I'm on flights.

Finally, Openflights.org is an awesome site that imports and visualizes your Tripit data.

https://openflights.org/user/dankohn1 In the last 7 years, I've flown 44 days in the air for 428,989 miles which is 1.796x of the way to the moon (i.e., I'm almost home!).

More travel info https://www.dankohn.com/travel


Hi,

Johnny here, I work in product @airhelp.

We love Tripit! We love them so much we have a partnership with them: https://travelupdate.boardingarea.com/tripit-airhelp-partner...

And originally we had a Tripit integration. But we decided to remove it for launch because we ran into a few bugs (on our side).

That is a super cool hack with Zapier, thanks for sharing. I'm currently using Fantastical 2 (on of my fav products) with connection to Google Cal. Gmail already populates my calendar with the flight times but unfortunately not the travel time to the airport. Maybe I should add some kind of buffer for all my travel events.

-jq


I'm not sure if the app works as advertised. I submitted my claim and 4 weeks later their team is still reviewing it. A question to their support team has not been answered for 2 weeks. All in all, it looks like a scam to get inbox access.


IMO, the legal network and a reputation of always suing airlines are the most important things in this line of business. For example, if you are seriously delayed while departing from an EU airport, you are entitled to a compensation. Inside the EU this mostly works, but consider the case when you live outside the EU and the non-EU airline basically tells you: "sue us". I'm currently using the services of one of their competitors to try and extract 250 euros from one small airline that thinks that because they're outside the EU they can delay a flight for two days and not pay the legal amount.


That company does offer this for one reason:

"We’re here to end your flying woes once and for all. We help air passengers around the world secure compensation for delayed, canceled, or overbooked flights. We’re also the first service to provide a free map with your personal travel stats in just one click."

Giving a third party access to my mails next to my ISP: no way.


There a bunch of services like this that scan emails and offer something valuable enough in return that they might be worthwhile... Earny is another one.

I really like the idea of them but I just wish there was just some better security model. What if granting read access to Gmail could give you an auditable log of every email read through the API? That way, services like this could prove that they are being responsible with their access rights.


It'd be great if you could instead grant approval for specific search/query strings.


How is it going to help to know _after_ the fact, that they are not trustworthy?


It helps future users avoid the service. Although, I think a better solution would be if Gmail etc. had an API where you could whitelist based on email address. Then these scanning services could ask permission per email address.


Must have a Google, Hotmail or Outlook account. Yeah, nah.


I filed my first claim with AirHelp a few weeks back. It’s “sent to airline” now, so we’ll see what happens.

I don’t think that I’ll hook this directly into my email, but if the one-off service works well, I’m sold.


Any chance of support for KAYAK or AwardWallet? Both offer a TripIt style forward booking email to add to an itinerary - I think AwardWallet offers an API for access to account data.


I wish I could import my flights from App in the Air


Hi. We actually check your past flights for eligibility and send you an email with compensation amount. Then you can use AirHelp or contact airline directly to file for compensation. Hope it helps

Bayram, CEO @App in the Air

P.S. We've got API to access one's flights (with permission, of course): http://docs.appintheair.apiary.io


Hi Bayram! I loe App in the Air, have used it for years now. Top 4% of travellers 2016! :) I just wanted to test AirHelp’s maps feature really, not for the compensation but because it looked cool.


Cenk, oh wow - cool! thanks for being with us and please let us know if any questions or feature requests.


Hey Bayram,

Hope to do a lot more things in 2018.

PS. Kasper says hi btw

Best, Johnny (I work on the product team at AirHelp)


Johnny, looking forward!


Yeah absolutely not giving access to scan my emails. Sorry. I don’t care what service you have, if you can’t provide an alternative way to get the data I’m out.

Also where’s your privacy policy? I don’t see it. You’re also not the first service to show a map of flights I’ve take. There’s been services around for YEARS.

http://www.jetitup.com/ https://my.flightradar24.com/ https://www.flightmemory.com/ https://openflights.org/ https://www.jetlovers.com/

To name a few.


Anyone remember that time I roll.me was selling info from the emails it scanned like what you purchased etc but wasn’t up front about it (hidden away in the privacy policy): https://www.gizmodo.com.au/2017/04/how-did-unrollme-get-user...


I was the biggest fan of Unroll me! Anything to get rid of junk from my inbox is a godsend. When I found about this data selling issue I was already getting "Unroll has stopped working" emails. After reading the article my motivation for reactivating was surprisingly quite low :(

At AirHelp we're not selling your data to any third party companies. We simply do not do this. We only use the data we find to do 2 things:

1. Find compensation for you if there are any. 2. Show some cool flight stats

Our business model revolves around helping people get compensation not selling user data to external companies.

-jq

PS. I work in Product at AirHelp.


> At AirHelp we're not selling your data to any third party companies. We simply do not do this.

Yet.

And what happens when you get hacked. Email is the root of trust for at least 90% of my accounts online.


> Yet.

According to the current management under the current financial circumstances. What happens when they run out of money, get sold, or get their C-suite management replaced by investors who want to make back their investment?

If it's stored somewhere at a cool startup, odds are it will make it into a third-party's hands eventually.


I think you can reassure people by taking us how you handle and treat the data and also how you guys make money off of it.


How do you make money?


I rediscovered Flightdiary a few weeks ago and saw it was bought by FR24 and now lives on https://my.flightradar24.com. Was pleasantly surprised and didn't even see it promoted by FR that much - I'm glad it lives on under a new umbrella.


BTW gcmap offers a way to render flights map and some basic stats from a URL, like [1], if you're an old-schooler who prefers editable and sharable URLs :)

[1] http://www.gcmap.com/mapui?P=LHR-FRA,FRA-MUC,MUC-MAD


Their privacy policy is here: https://www.airhelp.com/en/privacy/

I don't see anything specifically about what information they collect from scanned emails.


I wonder why a HK incorporated company based their Privacy Policy on EU GDPR principals? Gives non-EU users the same rights as EU users (right to be forgotten, correction, etc).

Enforcement would have to come from an EU user though; and with the EUR20m fine I imagine a single breach puts AirHelp under.

Aggregated data could be traded under this agreement (they can use legitimate interest as their legal basis for processing under GDPR so long as there is some form of anonymising aggregation). For example stats shared with airports about the types of people visiting them at different times of year, etc and what other products they buy. E.g. Hey JFK, 10% of your fliers shopped at X in the 30 days before they visited, but 12% did after, proving that X's ad campaign must have worked. From that perspective it's a pretty massive panel.


My biggest question is: why isn't it linked on the homepage? (along with virtually any other company information).


It is linked from their homepage: https://www.airhelp.com/en/

The linked page (https://www.airhelp.com/en/ahlp/travels/) is a terrible landing page and doesn't have much information or a link to the homepage. The homepage is much more informative about what they offer, which is more than just a map of your past flights.


Oh, I just assume their linked page was their homepage. That's pretty bad on their part.



No way. E-mails are incredibly sensitive data, you are not getting access. I'd consider using this if I could manually put my flight details in, but F-U-C-K T-H-A-T.

What reason do I have to trust you at all?

What if you got hacked?

Plus I don't use any of these emails. This is an awful idea.


Ever wondered how many flights you’ve taken or how much money you’ve spent on tickets? With AirHelp’s new travel map you can find out. From now on you'll know EVERYTHING about your traveling habits, such as: - how many flights you've taken - how many countries you've been to - how many days you've spent in the sky - how many km/miles traveled - how much money you've spent on flight tickets - how much time you've spent watching safety demonstrations - how much time you've waited in line at security and everything displayed in the dopest dope travel map!!!

And here's the kicker! If you've been on a delayed flight that is entitled to compensation, we'll automatically let you know and offer to claim the compensation for you. You'll NEVER miss out on compensation again because AirHelp automatically got your back.

Finding 10-12 flight itineraries among tens of thousands of other emails is more difficult than finding a needle in a haystack. Therefore, the first step of the process is selecting all emails that potentially contain an itinerary. We achieve that by an algorithm that combines some good-old-rules with a machine learning piece based on Extreme Gradient Boosting model. The next step is extracting all flight details from emails. In order to do that effectively, we use a set of our home-grown parsers and partner with 2 vendors to process less popular formats. This way our coverage and accuracy is higher than what any of our competitors can provide, and is paralleled only by Google’s Inbox. Even before the official launch of our email parser, our systems were processing around 500,000 emails every week. It meant that at peak times quite powerful machines were needed to keep up with the demand. Anticipating the official launch, in order to drive down the costs the critical parts of the system got re-written to the Go language, and today’s launch was handled from one of the smallest AWS EC2 instances. Currently we repurposed the tools created for building itinerary parsers to construct software for verifying other documents sent to AirHelp by claimants and extracting from them necessary data.


"Ever wondered how many flights you’ve taken"

What I would pay for is something that would make me forget the amount of time I've spent in airports and on crappy flights over the years.


Well ... sadly I've spent about 29 hours in security lines...

https://app.airhelp.com/shared-stats/22d49947a0bf239c931b7d2... #mytravels

-jq

PS. I work in product at AirHelp




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