Latest articles

Tours & activities centralisation has failed – time to decentralise

September 27th, 2021 by Alex Bainbridge

Roughly 10% of sightseeing & experiences bookings are via centralised online travel agents. Reservation systems are all built around centralisation, feeding data to & receiving transactions from centralised platforms. However centralisation has failed and has now run out of time. Incumbents and most challengers are based on web 2 but web 3 is around the […]

Four tech questions I would like to ask sightseeing industry leaders

September 20th, 2021 by Alex Bainbridge

It is conference season and thankfully some are now face to face again! Here are four tech questions that I want to hear answers to, when executives are asked questions on stage: Online travel agents (OTAs) Divergence – Tours & activities sector historically adopted hotel tech concepts, just a few years behind. However the next […]

Connectivity lead last minute bookings motivating Expedia & GetYourGuide to work together

September 15th, 2021 by Alex Bainbridge

At the end of last week we heard that GetYourGuide is providing sightseeing & experience supply to Expedia (read Phocuswire for more). This article speculates on why this relationship happened. I expect this is about last minute bookings. GetYourGuide now has 150 reservation system connections (source). That seems like a long list. To connect up that […]

Lime enters local tours market with free bike & scooter tours in LA & San Francisco

September 6th, 2021 by Alex Bainbridge

Lime, the bike/scooter platform, has announced “Lime Tours” (Read announcement) We recently launched Lime Tours, a new offering that shares with riders suggested places to visit as well as riding routes, currently live in LA and SF. Aimed at locals and tourists alike, riders will be able to find highly curated tour routes and points of […]

Time to get on the field of play: Autonomous vehicle sightseeing 2021 update

August 5th, 2021 by Alex Bainbridge

Do you own a tour bus or several in a major US or EU city? This article explains why you should begin your planning for autonomous vehicle sightseeing transition now…… this article was inspired by a weekly editorial on Phocuswire suggesting that this is an imminent issue, but not quite yet an immediate issue. At […]

Is dynamic pricing for urban tours inevitable or will the market price go to zero?

June 18th, 2021 by Alex Bainbridge

Yesterday Greg Fisher (CEO of TripShock / WaveRez) posed a great conversation starter on LinkedIn: Dynamic Pricing in tours & activities is going to change everything as we know it See LinkedIn thread, including 20+ comments Dynamic pricing is a topic that I have written about before, however previously my attempts at discussing it have […]

Reader question: Are you working on a worthwhile problem to solve?

May 27th, 2021 by Alex Bainbridge

Before I get to answer that question, a story…. Back in the day, after being a tour operator, I founded TourCMS. We had a stand at the 2009 or 2010 Travel Technology Show (London) and a nearby exhibitor came up to our stand and screamed at me for a few minutes. She was remonstrating they […]

4 strategies to fix Urban Adventures

March 2nd, 2021 by Alex Bainbridge

Urban Adventures is a local tour operator present in 125 cities and offers 1258 tours. Commercially, they are setup using a franchise model – with each city a franchise. Well, this was until recently, when these local franchise partners were terminated, as covered by Arival. I have no inside information about what went wrong or […]

5 things everyone gets wrong about self-guided experiences

February 23rd, 2021 by Alex Bainbridge

Self-guided experiences are the future of local tourism. Inspired by this article by Arival “5 things tour operators get wrong about self-guided tours” (and their upcoming self-guided tour conference) now seems a good time to go through what self-guided is and why it will be so important going forward. At the end of the article […]

2020 – Four key stories for the sightseeing & experiences sector

January 12th, 2021 by Alex Bainbridge

It is fashionable at this time of year to summarise what happened in the preceding year and predict what is coming next. 2020 was certainly a year to remember / forget (delete as applicable). But at a sightseeing & experiences industry level, what are the key stories of the year, beyond the complete destruction our […]

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