06 November 2012 ~ By Matt Zito ~ 6 Comments

A mobile booking platform is the next big opportunity in the $27B Tour & Activity Market.

In a recent article I wrote at Tnooz, I discuss a big entrepreneurial opportunity I see in the tour and activity market by selling 1-day activities to in-destination travelers via a mobile only booking app. This would be a pure transactional business via traveler’s mobile devices, one that I am very familiar with having successfully built and sold a youth-based ski travel agency or OTA, where we sold ski packages direct to consumers online.

Why I am so excited about the opportunity is that the current in-destination traveler purchasing behavior aligns perfectly with the needs of the travel supplier to sell their services direct to the traveler. I learned the hard way as an entrepreneur in a former venture, that it is very difficult to change customer and or consumer buying behavior. You can hit the jackpot if your product or service fulfills immediate demand. Feel free to post a comment about what you think.

Matt Zito is an Internet travel business consultant and entrepreneur. Matt works with CEOs, founders and entrepreneurs to help start and grow travel businesses.

The Travel Business Academy is a professional online course that helps entrepreneurs start a travel business.

6 Responses to “A mobile booking platform is the next big opportunity in the $27B Tour & Activity Market.”

  1. Hanim 8 November 2012 at 8:04 am Permalink

    Hi Matt,

    Thanks for your insightful observation. I’m the founder of dLoop that aims to offer a unique and personalized travel experience to inbound travellers to my country of birth, Malaysia. We’re looking at being an enabler for the local tour and activity operators. Unlike the more mature market such as the US, mobile booking app has yet to take off in a big way especially in the tourism industry. Most operators here do not have websites, do not understand yield management and do their businesses the traditional way. What they do have is expertise and passion. I’m taking a huge gamble here in terms of their readiness but I do believe that there is still an opportunity here.


  2. Matt Zito 8 November 2012 at 12:46 pm Permalink

    Hi, Hanim, thanks for your comment. If you would like to connect with me my LinkedIn profile ID is http://www.linkedin.com/in/mattzito

    If you are a first time travel entrepreneur you might want to checkout the Travel Business Academy, http://www.travelbusinessacademy.com, here we teach entrepreneurs how to start travel businesses, mainly travel companies that do transactional business like tour operators, tour guides, OTAs, travel brokers, tour and activity providers. We will be supporting mobile travel app businesses soon.

    Mobile bookings is actually still very early here in the US as well. Why I like the opportunity in the tour and activity market so much is because the opportunity to sell travel in-destination via mobile aligns nicely with how travelers are buying in-destination and what suppliers need. I think that you may find it even easier to convince the tour and activity suppliers to use mobile for selling.

    Best of luck on your venture and please connect with me as I’ll be building a support network of entrepreneurs that are developing in-destination mobile booking apps so that we can share ideas and help one another.

    Matt Zito

  3. Cliff Klett 10 November 2012 at 6:36 am Permalink

    Hi Matt,

    I am 22 years old and looking to start up my own home-based travel company on the side. I am an accountant, have traveled to 3 continents, and visited over 15 countries. Can you provide some brief advice/direction to me for today’s market and where you would start if you were me?

    Thank You,

  4. Matt Zito 10 November 2012 at 11:53 am Permalink

    Hi, Cliff, travel is difficult to break into. As a home-based business you are really going to have to find a niche. Travel sales to consumer is very expensive on the marketing side, so the more you can niche the better off you will be. Technology has advanced so fast in the last three years that now it is fairly easy to acquire product through APIs and XML feeds from 3rd party suppliers that you can then sell direct to consumer. You would need a programmer/developer to help you build your web based or mobile site. I am not a fan or proponent of affiliate sales and I believe in going direct to the travel suppliers for inventory but this is difficult. As a travel entrepreneur and consultant to companies in the travel space, I am moving towards mobile travel and away from online travel, as I view mobile as the next frontier in travel. It’s still very early but mobile travel is where I see the best new opportunities. I suggest that you take a look at the Travel Business Academy. http://www.travelbusinessacademy.com We specifically address home based travel businesses and teach entrepreneurs how to start a travel business through the online course. I also suggest that you read this Blog T4, check out Small Fish Big Ocean and read Tnooz.com. Thanks for writing.

  5. mezzo 14 December 2012 at 8:50 pm Permalink

    Very useful, thanks!

  6. Cherrylene 22 April 2013 at 12:15 pm Permalink

    Hi Matt,

    Mobile booking is more convenient for people on the go or always travelling. This is a very wonderful insight. Thanks!

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