IT student’s tech start-up for travellers

Thursday 17 November 2016

Entrepreneurial ANU student Jeanette Zhang has harnessed the skills she’s learnt through her IT degree to connect travellers with locals via a new web platform, Trajavu.

The inspiration for Trajavu came about after Jeanette shared holiday stories with a friend. She noticed a common thread: the most memorable and authentic travel experiences occurred when a local showed you around.

“Locals know their city really well…and that's the kind of knowledge that travellers and other locals find very valuable. The name, Trajavu, is a fusion of the words travel and déjà vu – you’ll get to know a place so well you get a feeling of déjà vu!”  

Locals with expertise can sign up to Trajavu to host tours and workshops which travellers can register to attend. Tours include guided hikes up Mt Majura, Floriade photo ‘walk-shops’ and art history and  haunted house tours.

Trajavu isn’t Jeanette’s first foray into entrepreneurism. Through the TechLauncher program at ANU, she worked on a start-up project with five other students and developed an iPhone iOS app that allows drivers in a convoy to share their real time locations.

“As part of my Bachelor of Information Technology, I participated in the TechLauncher program which was an eye opening experience. The Bachelor of Information Technology taught me the basics and TechLauncher pieced all these elements together for me and applied the skills I had learnt.”

“I loved working with a team of like-minded people to make things happen. It showed me that there are careers that you can pursue outside of a regular 9-5 job; and that’s what attracts me to entrepreneurship, working toward a shared vision and goal.”

Helping Jeanette develop Trajavu are co-founders, ANU PhB science student Marshall Clifton, who is majoring in computer science and University of Canberra entrepreneurship and innovation student Reuben Kong. The trio met at an Innovation ACT event.

With tours running for just over a month now, the Trajavu team has already had lots of interest in the app.

“We began facilitating tours one month ago, and on average, two tours are run each week.”

“The revenue we’re generating is promising, and we’ve received over 30 applications from locals who want to host tours in Canberra, along with interest from interstate tourists.”

Jeanette’s vision for Trajavu is to start in Canberra, and then move into the interstate markets. The team is planning to develop an app, source investors, and create an automated system.

“A holistic approach is taken at ANU. My IT degree has given me confidence and technical skills; and the general atmosphere of innovation and entrepreneurism at ANU has helped inspire my ideas and execute them.”

Like Jeanette, get industry experience and launch your career at ANU. Find out more about our degrees in computing here.


Updated:  10 August 2021/Responsible Officer:  Dean, CECS/Page Contact:  CECS Marketing