Launch of Touriosity – a non-profit platform for tour operators, supporting local tourism business
A very interesting initiative saw the light of day at the turn of the year. Passionate travel enthusiasts from the UK have launched Touriosity, a non -profit platform that has m.In let regional micro-businesses flourish. The goal is also to become independent from the big OTAs. Mainly in the context of the cost of the commission that local tour operators were burdened with in the case of such cooperation.
The idea behind Touriosity
Touriosity is a small startup benefiting from the experience of leaders present in the world of tourism for many years. Valuable experience was gained m.in managing a territory marketing agency. They also claim experience in pro-sales activities, backed by an interesting publication on increasing conversions.
The Covid crisis accelerated work on the idea of a platform that was to be a useful tool for small and medium-sized tour operators who are the salt of the local tourist world.
The company’s main credo is its non-profit nature. Touriosity does not charge commissions, the tour operator pays only a one-time fee. It is from it that marketing activities will be financed. The creators are counting on the viral effect of this venture to help them get the right reach. Marketing activities are envisaged mainly in social-media.
The first effects are quite positive on the portal in the first 24 hours more than 700 tour operators with more than 1,200 services were registered. Of course, from a global perspective, it is still not very much, but it gives grounds for optimism.
Poland in Tour Operator offer eternal dilemma – Covid will help ?
In Poland, there has been a discussion for years about Tour Operators’ lack of interest in promoting their own country’s tourism offerings. Your Tourism Forum has periodically held panel discussions on this topic. With the great boom in foreign travel in past years, significant Tour Operators were not interested in this kind of business.
Covid has significantly changed their approach both Ithaca and Rainbow have announced a significant increase in “Polish” offerings. Still, it is rather a classic stationary offer.
In the Polish reality, opportunities for a project similar to Touriosity should be sought elsewhere. It can be rather weekend tourism, short trips , in the area “close” to the residence of customers. Opportunities may be given to cities with tourist potential that has so far been untapped. In the case of Warsaw, good examples might be Łowicz, Żyrardów or Szydłowiec. Historical /culinary walks could win fans by strengthening local tourism enthusiasts. Such activity could also be a forge of local tourist personnel and a chance to enter the market for the youngest adepts of the tourist industry.
Touriosity type platform will support local enthusiasts
An interesting aspect may also be the support of passionate people who, however, have neither the tools/time nor, often, the experience in acquiring a mass customer. We can find quite a few such examples in the Warsaw area, e.g. Survivalist Łukasz Tulej, promoter of forest cuisine Katarzyna Miłochna, organizer of traditional wooden boat cruises Rafał Łapiński, balloonists from the Biebrza river, and finally young vintners from Dwórzno Winery or Mazovia.
Without the support of Tour Operators “it would be difficult for the customer on the street “to find an offer from these people/entities. A tool like Touriocity should make it easier to package their services into a formal tourism product.
The success of dynamic bundling of exotic destinations can be translated to the local ground?
Recently there has been a real boom in dynamic bundling, mainly exotic destinations are benefiting from it.
Can this trend help promote local tourism. Certainly, IT tools have improved significantly over the past years. Systems like Bluevendo are doing very well and one can assume that they can be easily adapted to the needs of local tourism.
We must also admit that behind the success of dynamic bundling in Poland are agents with a network of sub-agents, it is they who support the sale of the Tour Operator’s product. In the case of the regional/local offer, support would have to involve small tourist offices, after all, there are thousands of them.
Local tourist organizations could also provide assistance. Allocating their resources dedicated to marketing partially to support a specific tourist product. Strengthening local tourism at the same time.
Similar technology is certainly also available to Ithaca, which has launched its own global See Places project. In this case, however, one can’t help thinking that his goal is mainly to re-sell services on the spot to customers traveling strictly with this Tour Operator.
Can the PTO support a similar tool
There is talk of the possibility of the Polish Tourist Organization obtaining significant funds from the European Union budget in the near future. Certainly, the penny will be invested in supporting local Polish tourism.
Support for a platform allowing the sale of local products would be something expected by local operators. Certainly it would also be money well spent.