Touriosity a tool to support local tour operators offer – needed also in countries like Poland

An interesting tool promoting the local offer of Tour Operators, is there a chance for a similar initiative in Poland? Covid’s time favorable to this idea?

A very interesting initiative saw the light of day at the turn of the year. Tourism enthusiasts from Great Britain have launched Touriosity. A non-profit platform that is to allows, among others, to launch regional micro-businesses. The goal is also to become independent from big OTAs. Mainly in the context of high commission costs which local tour operators were charged within such cooperation.

The idea behind Touriosity

Touriosity is a small start-up that benefits from the experience of its leaders. Who have been present in the world of tourism for many years. They gained valuable experience while managing a travel marketing agency. They also have experience in pre-sales activities, supported by an interesting publication on increasing conversions.

The Covid crisis accelerated work on the idea.  ​​Touriosity is a  platform that should to be a useful tool for small and medium-sized tour operators who are the sole of tourist local world.

The company’s main credo is its non-profit character. Touriosity does not charge a commission, the tour operator pays only a one-time fee. This is where marketing activities will be financed. The creators count on the viral effect of this venture, which is to help in getting the right reach. Marketing activities are predicted mainly in social media.

The first effects are quite positive on the portal, over 700 tour operators with over 1,200 services were registered in the first 24 hours. Of course, from a global perspective, it is still not very much, but it gives grounds for optimism.

Poland in the Tour Operator’s offer is an eternal dilemma – Covid will help?

In Poland, there has been a discussion for years about the lack of interest of Tour Operators in promoting the tourist offer of their country. Panel discussions on this topic were held on a regular basis at the Forum of . With the boom in foreign trips in the past years, significant Tour Operators were not interested in this type of activity.

Covid has significantly changed their approach, both Itaka and Rainbow announced a significant increase in the “Polish” offer. However, it is still a rather classic sun&fun offer.

In the Polish reality, opportunities for a project similar to Touriosity should be sought elsewhere. It may rather be weekend tourism, short trips, in the vicinity of clients “home”. Secondary/small cities with a tourist potential that has not been used so far may have a chance. In the case of the Warsaw vicinity, Łowicz, Żyrardów and Szydłowiec are good examples. Historical/culinary walks could win crowds of fans, strengthening local tourism enthusiasts. Such activity could also be a breeding ground for local tourist staff. Big chance to enter the market for the youngest adepts of the tourist industry.

Touriosity platform will support local enthusiasts

An interesting aspect can also be support for people full of passion. Who, however, do not have any tools/time and often experience in acquiring a mass client. In the vicinity of Warsaw, we can find a lot of such examples, e.g. fan of survival Łukasz Tulej, promoter of forest cuisine Katarzyna Miłochna, organizer of cruises with traditional wooden boats Rafał Łapiński, balloonists from Biebrza, and finally young winemakers from Winnica Dwórzno or Mazovia.

Without the support of Tour Operators, it would be difficult for the “street client” to find an offer from these people/entities. A tool like Touriocity should facilitate the packaging of their services into a formal travel product.

Can the success of dynamic packaging of exotic destinations translate into local solutions?

Recently, we have had a real boom in dynamic bundling, which is mainly fueled by exotic destinations.

Dynamic packaging on Polish market as one of the remedies for Covid

Can this trend help promote local tourism? Certainly, IT tools have improved significantly in recent years. Systems like Bluevendo are doing extremely well. It can be assumed that they can be easily adapted to the needs of local tourism.

It must also be admitted that agents with a network of sub-agents are behind the success of dynamic packaging in Poland. They support the sale of the Tour Operator product. In the case of a regional/local offer, support would have to involve small tourist offices. After all, there are thousands of them.

Assistance could also be provided by local tourist organizations. Their resources are partially dedicated to marketing to support a specific tourist product. While strengthening local tourism.

Itaka, which launched its own global project, See Places, certainly has similar technology. In this case, however, one cannot help but feel that its purpose is rather to upsell products for Itaka’s own customers.

Can the Polish Tourist Organization support a similar tool?

There is talk of the possibility of obtaining significant funds from the European Union budget by the Polish Tourist Organization in the near future. Certainly, most of them will be invested in supporting local Polish tourism.

Support for a platform enabling the sale of local products would be expected by local operators. It would certainly be money well spent as well.