Meet the Startups

Meet the Startups

Finalists from UNWTO Innovation Competitions and Challenges

UNWTO has curated this online space to showcase Top Startups from within the global tourism innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystem, following its mandate of promoting universally sustainable, accessible and inclusive tourism, and innovation and digital transformation as a management priority.

Winners and finalists of UNWTO Innovation Competitions and Challenges are hosted here with their pitch deck.

Corporations, investors, institutions, education centres, accelerators and incubators, and other startups are encouraged to actively interact and form synergies to redefine travel as we know it today.

"Startups enable society to benefit from new advances in less time, and connecting their projects with potential partners and investors from the public and private sectors help to ensure their implementation. This flow of knowledge and investments is a novel paradigm for introducing state-of-the-art technologies in tourism for both countries and corporations."

Natalia Bayona,
UNWTO’s Senior Expert on Innovation,
Digital Transformation and Investments

Top Startups
 

Runnin'City
Lyon, France
Winner of the 1st UNWTO Sports Tourism Startup Competition

The problem

The vast majority of those 400 million runners are casual runners. They find it difficult to motivate themselves in their own city as running is in competition with family time, work & other hobbies. And when runners are travelling, they never know where to go, which discourages many of them. So it is difficult to stay motivated both at home and away.

80% of runners live and work in cities. Runners represent such a large proportion of residents and visitors that cities and their eco-system (hotels, airlines, transport companies, insurance companies, sports shops, race organizers, etc.) have to offer them engaging solutions. Cities fight against each other in a fierce national and international competition for being the most engaging and nicest city to visit, live and work in.

“We bridge the gap between runners and the city’s ecosystem”.

Our solution

Runnin’City (http://runnin.city) is a smartphone app with which runners (and walkers) can discover more than 200 cities around the world. It guides you through the city and comments on the points of interest as you run past them. Runnin’City is a combination of an audio GPS and digital tourist guide available in multiple languages.

We are also now integrating big data to improve customer experience with regard to health and well-being. The most impressive feature being the integration of street-by-street, real-time air quality and allergens data to help users run in the least polluted areas.

Our mission

“Our mission is to give our users a reason to run.”
They will be happier, healthier, more productive & more creative.

Our business model

Our business model is quite simple: The app is free for users.  We provide specific tours and annual running experiences for cities, hotels, transport companies, race organizers, financial companies and more recently, to sponsors.

We recently signed more than 100 contract in Europe, with some world-class references (Air France, Accor, ASICS Europe, Decathlon, the cities of Paris, Lyon, Brussels, Keolis, etc.).

The international press loves us and we have received several innovation prizes world-wide, including an Innovation Award at the Las Vegas Consumer Electronics Show in 2019, the prize of the most disruptive start-up in the are of sport and tourism by the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), and have been elected "European SportsTech of the Year".

Regions of interest: The Americas, Europe, Africa, Middle East, Asia and The Pacific

 Pitch deck


Parque Ecológico Mundo Amazónico
Leticia, Colombia
Finalist of the Tourism Tech Adventure Colombia: Scaling up

MUNDO AMAZÓNICO is a family project for the conservation and recovery of formerly eroded land in the Amazon. This reforestation became a collection of living plants that in 2009 incorporated tourism elements as a tool to ensure the economic sustainability of the conservation process. It opened its doors to the public in December 2010 and has already earned national and international recognition. These national and international recognitions attest to our commitment to caring for the environment and preserving the Amazon. Through this ecotourism initiative, we are developing good bio-commerce practices, making sustainable use of native biological resources, demonstrating strategies and productive activities that promote the sustainable use of natural resources in the Colombian Amazon, and generating economic and social benefits to local and indigenous communities.

Regions of interest: The Americas, Europe

 Pitch deck


Nauty 360
Cartagena, Colombia
Finalist of the Tourism Tech Adventure Colombia: Scaling up

The nautical tourism market generates income of thousands of millions of dollars annually in the world, however, it is still considered an undeveloped, irregular, insecure market, with fluctuating prices and unreliable or affordable, even more so in Latin America.

We live on a planet where 70% is water, with millions of people and companies focused on this sector, populations and groups where their only economic income is nautical tourism, and they have not yet found a stable way to show this great potential to clients, who do not know how to reach and purchase these services.

For this reason, we will be restaurateurs and promoters worldwide, the nautical tourism market, supporting the correct exploitation and its growth, centralizing any type of nautical experience in the same place, where each of our suppliers must have the certifications and adequate standards, to be able to access the platform and to guarantee users and travelers a magnificent, safe and reliable experience; becoming that milestone that connects all these providers with users anywhere in the world where these experiences are.

About our Startup

We are a Colombian startup that was born from the idea of connecting through a digital platform of collaborative economy, boat owners (sports boats, sailboats, catamarans, yachts) and operators of any other nautical experience, with travelers in any destination in the world that contains water; Whether for tourism, rest or business.

In addition, we seek to offer much more than boat rental, since users through our platform will be able to acquire services from people or companies that offer diving, fishing, water sports, ecological tourism, hotels on islands or lakes, corporate events, stays on private islands, cruises, exclusive nautical events or any other that may exist in the nautical world or existing body of water in the world.

Through the platform, users will be able to find all kinds of nautical experiences at their destination, book, pay, and after this, rate the experience received by the provider, where the provider may also rate the behavior of the customer during the service, protecting both sides of the business.

Regions of interest: The Americas, Europe

 Pitch deck

Pruvo
Haifa, Israel
Finalist of the 1st UNWTO Tourism Startup Competition

There are 2 main problems with B2B hotel bookings.

  1. Hotel prices tend to change AFTER you book - On average 22 times between the moment you book a hotel until the last free cancellation date.
  2. Most travel companies don’t re-shop hotel reservations after they booked the hotel for their customer

Pruvo is an AI-driven solution that automatically tracks hotel bookings made on any provider, monitors their price 24/7 & helps you increase your profitability by 36% by automatically rebooking those reservations when their net price drops.

In addition, Pruvo not only helps you increase profitability, but ALSO generates for you new hotel sales by reselling your inventory to Pruvo´s hundreds of thousands of end traveler customers.

Regions of interest: The Americas, Europe, Africa, Middle East, Asia and The Pacific

 Pitch deck

 

Fly Foot
Beirut, Lebanon
Finalists of the 1st UNWTO Sports Tourism Startup Competition

For diehard fans, football is much more than a sport. In the MENA region, many fans dream of watching live European football matches, but they struggle to navigate the process of finding tickets for the match, arranging flights, and booking accommodations through a patchwork of foreign websites. These fans must perform extensive online research in a foreign language to find the best value flights, convenient and affordable hotels, reliable transportation, and touristic activities that interest them. Without prior knowledge of their destination, it is difficult to evaluate the options and piece together a successful travel plan.

Fly-Foot is the first online platform where football fans from MENA can book all- inclusive travel packages to watch their favorite teams play with just a few clicks.

Regions of interest: Middle East

 Pitch deck


Wheel the World
Berkeley, United States
Santiago, Chile
Winner of the 2ndUNWTO Tourism Tech Adventure for the Americas: EdTech

There are one billion people who have a disability and two billion directly related to them. All of them have different accessibility needs and face multiple problems when they travel.

Wheel the World is a social startup with the purpose of empowering people with disabilities to explore the world without limits!

Through gowheeltheworld.com people can find and book accessible travel experiences including places to stay and things to do with the accessibility they need in the most amazing destinations of the world.                                                    

By mapping detailed accessibility of travel partners (hotels and tour operators), and organizing their relevant information into our systems, Wheel the World provides accurate information and confidence to travelers with disabilities when booking a trip through the platform.  Users profiles detail their accessibility needs, search for destinations and look for travel products with all the specific accessibility information about them.  Once booked the service, automated emails and system integrations Wheel the World provides all information to the hotel/ tour operator required to satisfy the traveler’s needs.

Wheel the World was part of several accelerator programs such as Booking Booster Booking.com’ sustainable accelerator program, Google Launchpad, and Facebook Community Leadership Program.

Regions of interest: The Americas, Europe, Africa, Middle East, Asia and The Pacific

 Pitch deck


Soundwalkrs
Palma de Mallorca, Spain
Finalist of the 1st UNWTO Tourism Tech Adventure for the Americas

We know we will travel again, but it will require lots of efforts to include physical distancing strategies for safety. As the Travel sector counts its losses and intent to resume activites to plan how to get the sector back up one thing is inevitable: change, and with it the rise of a new type of traveler. As  the sector recovers the industry will have to implement new strategies to increase urgently revenue streams with upsell opportunities, and respond to the demand of the travelers that will be available in early Post Covid travel landscape.

But, what happens when tours and activities are no longer available or limited in a new Post Covid Travel world because it will require physical distancing?
With the increasing need for self-guided tours to provide complementary services to the leisure traveler in a physical distancing manner, Soundwalkrs has pivoted to provide a scalable and rapid solution to help the industry recover.

Soundwalkrs is cloud base service to integrate self guided tours in online reservations.

Through software licensing and delivery model we offer our subscribers a centrally hosted self guided tours for tourism service providers to create new revenue streams and add value to their customers journey in the Post COVID travel landscape that will require physical distancing.

Regions of interest: The Americas, Europe

 Pitch deck


Eco Nubia
Aswan, Egypt
Winner of the Tourism Tech Adventure Middle East: Egypt

We help local communities to discover their own Natural & Cultural Heritage treasures…
Put it in action using Tourism practices, to receive financial and psychological benefits.

Eco Nubia project is located on Bigeh Island, which is considered as an archaeological site situated along the Nile River in historic Nubia, and within the Aswan Governorate of southern Egypt.
The island has been situated in the reservoir of the Old Aswan Dam, since the dam's initial completion in 1902.

Eco Nubia is a new Ecolodge aiming to promote the eco-friendly lodging with authentic Nubian food and beverages, and unique beach area directly on the Nile surrounded by the amazing nature of the island. The project also includes a community center that is suitable for organizing events with a unique view overlooking the famous Philae temple.

Regions of interest: Middle East

 Pitch deck

 Video

Escappy Travel
Bogotá, Colombia
Finalist of the Tourism Tech Adventure Colombia: Scaling up

  • In the tourism sector, people generally travel to the same traditional destinations in each country, which generates an overload of those destinations and in high seasons the service deteriorates, prices increase and there is no experience according to the wishes of the people. This happens due to ignorance of the existing tourist wealth. Usually 80% of people travel to 20% of destinations and about 45% of these travelers don't return satisfied with their experience.
  • On the other hand, traditional agencies are not concerned with fully understanding people's wishes or offering personalized experiences. They usually offer generic experiences which causes that dissatisfaction in travelers.
  • Additionally, accommodation and transport services often have routes that go with 50-60% of the capacity, so they charge the cost to the final customer.
  • During the Covid-19, many tour operators who depended on tourism to live,were severely affected, because tourists couldn't be mobilized.

At Escappy we solve it through surprise, personalized and virtual trips, where:

  1. We occupy the marginal product (what the airlines and accommodations already know they lost) and we obtain discounts or commissions between 50% -80%, which represents savings for the customer → This is something that companies cannot do directly with the client because everyone would wait for prices to drop and the brand would be affected as well as the market. By having a surprise travel business model where people find out very close to the departure date about all the details of their trip, we can select those best that suit the wishes of customers and occupy those routes and accommodations of “marginal product”.
  2. Identify people's wishes and organize tailor-made trips according to each of the characteristics they want to live. We achieve this thanks to technology and to characterize each destination, accommodation and activities. In addition to tracking low-priced routes and offering the best options for customers.
  3. We are starting to boost tourism, giving visibility to destinations that people are unaware of and that have a unique innovation factor. Take people to destinations that they will really value, making tourism more responsible.
  4. At Escappy we decided to give visibility through digital tools (online transmission) to indigenous, rural, Afro communities or in general families or people who have incredible experiences and want to receive an income; cultural, gastronomic, artistic, historical experiences and many more that families can enjoy from home, protecting our health and connecting hearts to support us all in the current situation.

 Regions of interest: The Americas, Europe, Africa, Middle East, Asia and The Pacific

 Pitch deck


The Freebird Club
Dublin, Ireland
Porto, Portugal
Finalist of the 1st UNWTO Tourism Startup Competition

PROBLEM

The global population is ageing at a phenomenal rate due to increased longevity and falling birth rates. The number and proportion of older persons (60+) is set to grow from 900m today to an estimated 2.1bn by 2050. Against this background, we address 3 social issues:

  1. Loneliness & isolation among older adults - recent studies indicate that almost 1 in 5 adults over 65 are chronically lonely. Chronic loneliness has been correlated to smoking over 15 cigarettes a day, and presents a higher health risk than obesity. A recent study found that among Americans aged 65+, social isolation costs c.$7 billion in additional health care costs annually.
  2. Lack of travel options for older adults - many would like to travel more but lack a companion or the confidence to go alone.
  3. Financial insecurity in later life - many struggle in retirement with inadequate pensions, despite often living in mortgage-free homes.

SOLUTION

The Freebird Club is a peer-to-peer social travel and homestay club for older adults. It allows approved members to travel and stay with each other as part of a trusted community of peers. Members with spare rooms can rent them out to fellow older adult members who wish to travel and meet like-minded people. Our ‘age-friendly’ platform allows members to set up personal profiles of themselves (including their background & interests) so that guests and hosts can find and select each other on the basis of shared interests and compatibility. Visits always involve staying with a host living at home, as the focus is more on the sharing of company than the accommodation. As such, Freebird offers a new accessible way of travelling for older people (especially those who would not otherwise travel alone), a means to unlock value in their homes and earn extra income, and a fun way to meet new people and enjoy social and cultural interaction in later life.

THE COVID CONTEXT

Just as the world’s population of older adults starts to soar, we face the intersection of two deadly epidemics: COVID-19 and loneliness. One is acutely deadly now, the other a gradual threat with similarly devastating consequences. Even before the current crisis, we were in a social recession, as evidenced by dramatic increases in loneliness and isolation among the elderly. Now we are in danger of a social depression that could run deeper and last longer than the current Coronavirus pandemic. Here too, older people are the most severely impacted, given their extreme requirements for self-isolation and avoidance of social interaction. This is devastating for seniors who were already prone to loneliness. Looking beyond the acute phase, to when we can start travelling again, the crisis has created new travel barriers for older people, by denting their confidence with safety concerns that weren’t there previously. In this context, older adults will need all the help they can get to re-boot, regain confidence and re-connect with the world around them, and most importantly, with each other.

This is where the Freebird Club comes in, offering new opportunities to connect and interact, through safe shared travel experiences with fellow Club members. Compared to staying in hotels or going on a cruise or group holiday, a Freebird trip to another member’s home is far lower risk in the virus context – simply because contact can be limited to one other person at their home. Post crisis, the Freebird Club can be a real beacon to get seniors mobilised and connected again, as well as empowering them financially. If older adults ever needed Freebird to exist, it will be in the aftermath of this pandemic.

Regions of interest: The Americas, Europe, Africa, Middle East, Asia and The Pacific

 Pitch deck


Stay 22
Montreal, Canada
Finalist of the 1st UNWTO Tourism Startup Competition

Stay22 is a free interactive solution that helps event-goers make better & faster travel decisions. From helping them choose their accommodation between a range of booking platforms such as Booking.com, Expedia, Hotels.com, Airbnb, etc; to offering a broad selection of travel services that include restaurants, car rentals, parking and events, Stay22 aims to offer the public a superior booking experience. Working as a map-like widget, it uses events and points of interest to up-sell hotel inventories to targeted users.

Main technology used: Interactive solution
Second most important technology: Big Data

Regions of interest: The Americas, Europe, Asia and The Pacific

 Pitch deck


Acullicando.com
La Paz, Bolivia
Finalist of the 1st Tourism Tech Adventure for The Americas

My family has its origins on the shores of Lake Titicaca, in the middle of the Andes, in the Community of Lojpaya, in La Paz, Bolivia. Like thousands of peasant families, my father migrated at an early age to the city, due to the limited opportunities in the rural area. Like many, he left, but never really left his community.

It is ironic that a country like Bolivia, with so much diversity and geographical and cultural richness, suffers from continuous rural-urban migration processes, so that the rural population represents an increasingly smaller percentage of the population (2017, 70% urban, 30% rural). From a social perspective, it is dramatic that along with this process not only populations are lost, but all the elements that make these communities in the rural area (languages, traditions, festivals, etc.) and the existing physical and human capital is underutilized.

Nevertheless, in the last decade - as a result of sustained growth in Bolivia's economy - the average income of people has increased notably. Two million Bolivians have moved to a "middle class" income level. Moreover, new consumption patterns have developed, representing a greater potential demand for tourism.

In spite of this new context, the tourist offer continues to be "split": on the one hand, a traditional tourist offer is maintained, with a highly segmented offer (either very expensive for external tourism, or of very low quality for local tourism) that benefits few, maintains others at subsistence levels, and does not offer a quality-price middle ground for an increasingly important middle class.

On the other hand, the Bolivian government has been implementing policies to promote community-based tourism, which aims to develop community-owned and managed initiatives. Unfortunately, the success stories promoted from the public sphere are few and, in contrast, many funds are invested in rural community hotels without concrete results, many of them abandoned.

The proposal:

I start from the certainty that there is a third way. Thus, based on my experience and knowledge in the sector (I have been a tour guide for 15 years and am an economist by profession), I believe that a vital aspect for the success of any tourism initiative is the existence of leading private entrepreneurs, who at the same time have a social commitment to their communities.

Thus, the model I propose is family-based entrepreneurship, with a close relationship with their community of origin. This model takes the best of both proposals, that is, a tourism project with a private (family) base but with an explicit social sense. The entrepreneur, who is a person or family of the community, assumes the risks and costs for the development of a tourist offer of accommodation (Country House, Rural Hotel, Camping, etc.) and outsources the services (transport, food, products, services) to the members of the community to which he belongs, thus generating income and appropriation of the initiative. We have tested the model in the "Sacred Lake" country house... and it works!
The mission of the start-up is to support the development of rural family tourism enterprises under this model, through virtual management services, efficient and timely. Specifically, it is proposed:

  1. To constitute a service platform for the development of family rural tourism initiatives, providing technical assistance services, training of providers (community), management of reservations and marketing, with emphasis on local tourism.
  2. Also, to develop mechanisms for articulating commitment with the community (development of providers, service delivery, joint planning, accountability).
  3. To constitute a network of entrepreneurs under this business model.

Regions of interest: The Americas

 Pitch deck

 Video

GDX Travel
Bogotá, Colombia
Winner of the Tourism Tech Adventure Colombia: Scaling up

GDX is an online airline consolidator with the most airline content from the Latin America Region. We have the most Low Cost content and we allow and make possible its distribution.  We take all the airlines in the region, put them together in a single tech solution and allow any OTA to access it by a single API connection.
This allows our partners to: 

  1. Centralize their operations in the region in one single solution.
  2. Have a unique virtual interlining in the region. Our software makes combinations between airlines from different categories, airlines that don’t have commercial agreements between them. So this allow our partners to have more and better options for their clients.
  3. Have local prices for every airline that is affiliated with us, at the end of the day, a good tech solution, plus a great service and the best prices is what opur clients are looking for.

Regions of interest: The Americas

 Pitch deck

La Voyageuse
Pessac, France
Finalist of the 2nd UNWTO Tourism Startup Competition

Problem

The insecurity of women is the recurring topic on the media. There are a lot of sexual aggression/ assault cases where women are victims of which makes everybody uncomfortable yet brings a reality to light.

Women today are more audacious, independent and they seek more than ever to try new, authentic and experiences to feel free. Yet, they always fear for their safety.

81% of solo travelers consider safety as the main issue. Many notice that their travels are limited by issues due to the fact that they travel alone, especially when it comes to accommodations. As far as non-solo travelers are concerned, we learnt that 55% of women surveyed dream to travel solo but do not dare to do so.

Furthermore, the market of solo female travelers is on a explosive growth rate. For the three consecutive years, solo female travelers are the big trend of the market: There are more than 138 million in 2017, twice as much as in 2014 and is expected to only grow more in the future.

Yet, there isn’t any safe homestay solution for solo female travelers.

The Solution

Being an experienced solo backpacker and having encountered several safety issues while traveling, Christina Boixière, launched in July 2019 the first safe homestay platform to help women travel solo safely - “La Voyageuse” (la-voyageuse.com) that connects solo female travelers with trustworthy women hosts all over the world.

Innovation

“La Voyageuse” integrates an unique hybrid profile verification system (both automatic and manual checks) to thoroughly verify member profiles in several steps: Initial ID check, individual phone interview and continuous follow-up.

Social Innovation

“La Voyages” targets a niche market with a considerable potential. It’s also the only solution that helps women travel solo, safely and authentically. All hosts are volunteers who welcome travellers home, as friends, making each homestay experience authentic.

Achievement

Recognized as one of the Top 4 innovators in Sustainability by UNWTO in 2020 and double-winner of National eTourisme contest in 2019, “La Voyages” has been mentioned by over 80 medias since its launch. With over 1350 validated hostesses on the platform, 450 travelers, aged 18 to 71, have realized their dreams with us, among which many have traveled solo for the first time.

Ambition

We believe that if we can help more women step out of their comfort zone, we can make this world a better and more harmonious place to live.

We offer a solution that responds to a current and pressing social issue, we promote gender equality: where men can go, woman shall go! 

If for a Western woman, traveling solo is already considered as a courageous act, imagine for those from India or the Middle East? 

“La Voyageuse" will thus be beneficial to the world economy because we will develop this new customer base. The social impact will be even greater when we will be present in countries where women are increasingly seeking for empowerments, especially in countries where women’s rights are limited or non-existent.

“La Voyageuse" is the solution for the tourism of tomorrow, as it promotes sustainable tourism and women’s empowerment around the world.

Regions of interest: The Americas, Europe, Africa, Middle East, Asia and The Pacific

 Pitch deck


GoRaymi.com
Quito, Ecuador
Winner of the 2ndUNWTO Tourism Tech Adventure for the Americas: EdTech

Traditional tourism online marketplaces catalog tourism services and get a commission from each sale. Although this is functional for well positioned destinations and large scale tourism industry (rooms and air tickets), however, this business model excludes to an INCREASING WORLD TOURISM MARKET interested in nature, culture, rural tourism and community tourism. As well it excludes:

  • A variety of offers from the smallest tourism actors of a destination, because theirs offers are not attractive for a traditional on line market places.
  • Non – massive tourism offers created by small touristic businesses. 
  • Cultural, religious, cultural and folk festivals from less positioned destinations.

To understand the social impact, we have considered studies that reveal that tourism contributes significantly to achieving the SDGS, and others that reveal that more than 70% of the tourists choose their travel destination through digital media.

This is the reason why by including the offers of small tourism actors for free and efficiently way, in an online marketplace where their less positioned territories are protagonists, SOLVES AN EXCLUSION PROBLEM.

In a post-COVID-19 era, the inclusion of less know destinations or even small destinations in the digital world becomes more urgent. Although OTAS can expose and sell offers from small destinations, the truth is that the processes prior to booking, today more than ever, are essential. The moments of dreaming and planning a tourism experience in a small destination, is the missing piece, now when tourists will demand all kind of information, before booking. Today, more than ever a tourist will demand more and deep information about a destinations instead of simple advertising in a traditional market place.

We are a CITIZEN EMPOWERMENT PROCESS, which facilitates RURAL COMMUNITIES, the necessary work to POSITION THEMSELVES AS A TOURISTIC DESTINATION, through a PROMOTION AND ONLINE MARKETPLACE PLATFORM which, in the form of SOFTWARE AS A SERVICE (SaaS), coordinates the actions of the people and entrepreneurs.

  • OPTIMIZING the collaborative work of these actors
  • PROMOTING small communities unknown until today
  • PROMOTING CONSUMPTION of any offer from local tourism producers
  • SELLING OFFERS ONLINE, that, despite not being massive, it can be sold online
  • GENERATING KNOWLEDGE about the wealth generated by this industry in their territories.

To structure this process, we have added:

  • Subscriptions, for the provision of technology for all the involved actors
  • Collaborative Economy, for the appropriation of technology by local stakeholders.
  • Predicting algorithms (patent pending) that build relationships between what tourists looks for (which is known) and the offer of smaller players (which is not known).  A viable way to bring these two worlds together (promotion).
  • The transformation of territory touristic promotion portals into online marketplaces.
  • Data mining in our platform to build knowledge.

Our business model mix the traditional on line marketplace model with the subscription to a software as a service as key of intelligent and effective promoting added to a methodology of collaborative work to produce contents and to build knowledge in less positioned destinations.

Following this line, we have added special products:

  • Free subscriptions for the generation of contents.
  • Freemium subscriptions for cataloging product offer.
  • Sales Subscriptions for the creation and management of promotion pages.
  • Special subscriptions for the execution of actions of social responsibility by other industries.

Through these products we assure the engagement of all tourism stakeholders: tourism entrepreneurs, Governments, Academic organizations, tourism small actors, volunteers, people of the destinations and even the tourists themselves, showing that union means strength when we want to commercialize a less positioned destination.

In addition, we offer 3 SERVICES that complement the needs of our customers:

  • DESIGN AND PRODUCTION OF CONTENTS
  • DIGITAL ASSETS MANAGEMENT
  • TOURISM MARKETING STRATEGIES DESIGN

Regions of interest: The Americas, Europe, Africa, Middle East, Asia and The Pacific

 Pitch deck


Tripxio (Formely Roundbob.com)
Kampala, Uganda
Winner of the UNWTO/NEPAD Tourism Tech Adventure: Promoting African Tourism Innovation

It is difficult and expensive for African tourism operators to digitalize their products inventory and do business online. Achieving this could help increase product visibility, distribution and demand.

Tripxio is a SAAS efficiency suite helping tourism operators cover their front and back-office operations and 3rd party integrations. The platform enables small and medium businesses in the tourism sector to digitalize their operations, package new & existing offers, create e-commerce websites, offer booking pages, distribute to 3rd party platforms, accept payments and efficiently run their businesses.

Regions of interest: Africa

 Pitch deck


Chekin
Sevilla, Spain
Finalist Healing Solutions for Tourism Challenge

Autonomous Check-In is becoming essential for travelers in these uncertain times, to comply with the hygiene and security measures that a physical reception can hardly offer.

Chekin offers hotel and property managers around the world a digital solution to easily, comfortably and safely conduct guest registration.

Thanks to our technological solution, we automate all the legal requirements of a fragmented tourist legislation, which often changes from city to city. This ranges from signing the rental agreement to paying the tourist tax, making it an especially useful tool for hosts with a high number of properties. The other functionalities are joined to the legal and fees area: OCR scanner, biometric mapping (DNI vs selfie) and the most important in these times, the pre-Check-In, which will help the tourism sector to carry out this process of remotely and respecting social distancing. For this we integrate with any type of smart lock and facilitate a completely autonomous Check-In process, from the registration of travelers, through the verification of identities to access to accommodation, 0% contact, 100% comfort.

The solution is based on a B2B model where hosts are offered a technological solution (which can be a mobile app for small clients, or an API that integrates with the API of larger clients) that allows reducing and digitize the different tasks involved in registering a new guest, allowing traveler access, document scanning, cloud storage, sending information to the Police or managing tourist tax in just 3 minutes.

The integration of our API with the smart locks of our clients is very important to give autonomous access to the guest and complete the Self Check-In process." 

 Pitch deck


SeeVoov
Omer, Israel
Finalist 1st UNWTO Start Up Competition

SeeVoov is a video based trip planner.

We offer our partners an end to end costumer journey that is supported by video.

We use the power of video (increases time on site, increases purchase intent and consumer engagement) and turn viewers into buyers.

We offer several use case scenarios in different stages of the traveler (all as white label solutions):

  • Inspiration (pre travel and pre decision) – video guides to Swiss destinations
  • Planning (post flight booking) – planning your stay in your destination
  • Booking – booking attractions with the platform and increase ancillary revenues
  • In-flight entertainment – enable travelers to explore their destination and plan their stay while they fly.
  • On site – a Swiss white label application offer travelers to navigate in their destination (based on their pre-planned trip) and explore their current location for additional attractions

 Pitch deck

 Video

LUGGit
Lisbon, Portugal
Finalist 2nd UNWTO Start Up Competition

LUGGit is a platform that works through a mobile app (available in iOS and Android) and allows anyone who travels to request a Keeper in real-time that will collect their luggage, keep it and deliver it at the place and time they choose.

 Pitch deck


Questo
Bucharest, Romania
Winner 2nd UNWTO Start Up Competition

Questo is the travel platform and mobile app for contactless, gamified 24/7 city tours. The company travelers and locals discover new places and stories by using our mobile app to follow clues and solve challenges based on their surroundings. Every tour is created by a local storyteller or a tour operator who gets a revenue share for every booking.

THE PROBLEMS QUESTO IS SOLVING:

Problem 1. Expensive tours
The younger generations want budget friendly options when they travel. Tour guides charge on average 75 euros/person in big cities. Questo tours are priced at 3-5 euros/person (20x cheaper)

Problem 2. Regular tours are restrictive.
Travelers seek flexibility and freedom, while regular tours run on tight schedules and in big groups. With Questo, you can play at any hour, alone or with friends and pause the game and resume whenever you like.

Problem 3. Safe tours post covid
Questo provides the safest tours: no human interactions, play anytime, less crowded routes, social distancing.

OUR SOLUTION

Questo is a travel app that takes tourists & locals on city exploration games where they solve clues to discover new places and local stories.

It offers 24/7, year-long experiences for an unlimited number of people simultaneously. No need for a tour guide, only your smartphone.

Each route inside the Questo mobile app is created around a specific theme, which can be inspired by a movie, a book, a historical fact or just a local legend. In London, for instance, travelers can explore the city as Sherlock Holmes or Isaac Newton, while in Paris they can play as Hemingway or Picasso.

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Smart Tour / Smart Tracking
Brazil Florianópolis
Finalist Healing Solutions for Tourism Challenge

Smart Tracking is a Covid-19 contact tracking platform during the disease incubation period. We were able to track establishments and people who had contact with a patient in the 15 days prior covid-19 diagnosis and contact them by email or phone. We don’t use Apps, BLE or GPS. We are in accordance with the General Data Protection Law and we appreciate the individual freedom. Using Smart Tracking is it possible to maintain the local population and visitors safety in the return of economic activities.      

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KAI Hotel Solutions (Formerly Yearth)
Singapore, Singapore
Finalist 1st UNWTO Start Up Competition

KAI helps hotels to supercharge the upsell strategy by selling the right experience to the right guests at the right time.

Start by building an entire automated personalized guest journey, KAI empowers hotels to engage with the guests from all channels, not only knowing guests preference, preparing check-in, staying connected with guests, but increasing revenue before arrival.

Artificial Intelligence Big Data Europe, Middle East, Asia and The Pacific

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Climber RMS
Lisbon, Portugal
Finalist 1st UNWTO Start Up Competition

Most of the hotels don't have time to run their revenue management and find difficult to manage all the data. However in such competitive market, they also want to be more competitive and bring better results. Climber helps on this through dynamic pricing and automated generated reports, which allows hoteliers to detect revenue opportunities on a clean interface. Climber enables the hoteliers to work more efficiently and save time.

Climber has 2 products, one with target for hotel chains with more revenue management culture and another one for small and independent hotels with less revenue management culture. Both easy-to-use, clean and visual. Both with support and free training provided and also we give the possibility to due revenue management consultancy with our partners.

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Rutopia
Mexico City, Mexico
Finalist 2nd UNWTO Global Startup Competition

Indigenous communities have everything needed to be great hosts: they have the nature, the culture, the human capital, the organization and even the infrastructure. However, they lack the know-how to design complete and high-quality tourism experiences as well as the tools to access wider international markets.

At rutopia.com We support indigenous community tourism projects in succeeding and creating a positive impact in their community by working with them to improve the creation and distribution of their tourism products and services. Specifically, we help integrate the products and services they offer into a more end-to-end, high-quality bio-cultural tourism experience. We then also help ensure that these experiences are communicated accurately and effectively, and help to manage their bookings.

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iBonus Limited
Hong Kong, China
Top Solution- Healing Solutions for Tourism Challenge

COVID19 Digital Prevention System to control the spread of COVID19 while resuming the daily economic activities.

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Hotelmize
Tel Aviv, Israel
Finalist Healing Solutions for Tourism Challenge

Hotelmize is the leading data-based and highly efficient repricing technology that helps hotel distributors, bed banks, wholesalers, and travel agents to increase their profitability by 30% and raise their business standards.

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Hotel Data Cloud
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Finalist Healing Solutions for Tourism Challenge

Hotels rely on complex distribution networks with hundreds of booking channels to sell their rooms. These channels require detailed descriptive content about the hotels, highlighting their features, amenities, services, and facilities. Distressingly, the content currently available is incomplete and even inaccurate, misleading, and obsolete. This not only leaves customers frustrated and disappointed; Hotels lose bookings and revenue. Misinformation can create substantial reputational damage, requiring recovery efforts (e.g. with room upgrades or compensation) that impact hotels financially.

The inability to efficiently share information is now particularly worrisome: To recover after CODIV-19, hotels urgently need to ease apprehension, offer reassurance, and rebuild the confidence of travelers. Transparently and openly communicating how hotels ensure hygiene, safety and cleanliness is essential.

Hotel Data Cloud (HDC) is a content distribution platform that enables hotels to easily share detailed content and comprehensive information in a standardized, globally consistent format. This reduces manual workload and lets hotels efficiently control the narrative of their listing across all booking channels, improving their discoverability and leading to increased bookings and revenue. Artificial intelligence and machine learning are applied to generate personalized content and smart recommendations.

The platform has been modified to reflect the increased demand for even greater transparency during and after COVID-19: HDC lets hotels communicate how they ensure hygiene, safety, and cleanliness. A special section was developed within the platform, dedicated to comprehensively cover all measures that relate to COVID-19 with over 94 standardized attributes. Hotels can share details on improved hygiene standards, cleaning and housekeeping protocols, staff procedures, social distancing processes and any other policies that hotels introduce to create a safe and healthy experience for their guests.

Given how quickly the situation can change as we learn more about COVID-19 and how to combat it, the HDC platform is designed to allow for quick modification: New attributes can easily be added if there are new insights that lead to the introduction of new safety and hygiene standards and procedures. The platform can be customized in partnership with tourism authorities, to comply with local regulatory standards.

All hotel content and information is distributed by HDC through a freely accessible data feed, which can easily be integrated into travel websites, booking platforms, reservation systems and also governmental systems and platforms. All connected channels are immediately updated, which eliminates the need for hotels to perform redundant manual updates of various extranets. HDC provides access to this information for free.

With up-to-date information and an unrivaled level of detail, travel companies can provide better filtering options and reliably inform their customers, to generate valuable additional bookings for hotels using HDC. This ultimately allow travelers to discover hotels more easily, make smarter booking decisions and arrive well informed without anxiety and uncertainty.

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Road.Travel
London, United Kingdom / Moscow, Russia
Finalist 2nd UNWTO Global Startup Competition

Road.Travel is an all-in-one solution for creating and publishing curated routes with storytelling, booking capabilities and an industry-unique budget optimizer. We make car travels as simple as holiday packages, and Road.Travel is the first-ever technological platform to introduce road trip packages.

Our technology enables tourism authorities, destination management companies and travel service providers to take immediate steps in the months following the global lockdown to promote Covid-19 safe trips.

We're offering a solution for tourist destinations (DMOs, tourism boards, etc.) and travel service providers (airlines, car rental companies, etc.) – domestic car travel packages, with curated routes and hand-picked recommendations from experts and local community activists on how to explore their home regions in a sustainable way with a purpose of education, entertainment, physical activities, etc.

Our platform can easily be integrated into websites and mobile apps of tourist destinations, airlines, etc., as well as used as a standalone solution. Please contact us at partners@road.travel for more information and a live demo.

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Visualfy
Valencia, Spain
Winner 2nd UNWTO Global Startup Competition

Visualfy is a company formed by deaf and hearing people that creates technology for deaf people and institutions committed to accessibility, with the objective of closing the gap deaf people have to face in their daily life in different areas. We have created an artificial intelligence algorithm able recognize relevant sounds and translate them into visual and sensory alerts, so deaf people can be notified directly and at the same time of hearing people about important information they must react to.

Our system is patented in 44 countries and has been developed with an investment of 1,3 millions of R+D from a European H2020 program and 1.2 millions of private funds. It translates important sounds -such as a fire alarm, a baby crying or an alarm clock- into visual and sensory alerts on any connected device, both public -intelligent lighting of the building- or private -mobile or smart band-. We add indoor geo-positioning technology to assist evacuation in case of emergency.

We have two main business lines:

  • Visualfy Places is a portfolio of technological solutions for the accessibility of public and private spaces, to guarantee compliance with accessibility legislation on inclusion and equal access to services and products, allowing people with hearing loss equal opportunities. It includes technological (artificial Intelligence and geo-positioning)  and communication solutions (magnetic loops and real-time sign language video interpretation). 
  • Visualfy Home is a home sound recognition system that listens for the user and translates sounds such as the doorbell, the fire alarm or a baby crying into customizable light colour alerts on smart devices. For example, the user can make the smartphone light up in green if the doorbell sounds, the smartphone and smartwatch in yellow if the baby is crying, or the smart bulbs in red if the fire alarm sounds.  

We have been working with the deaf community for the last 10 years, and deaf people are part of all our value chain: as investors, advisors, part of the managing board, team and users. Our team is made up of 17 deaf and hearing people from different fields (artificial intelligence, development, marketing, commercial, customer service…) who work every day to make the company’s vision a reality: that hearing loss does not stop anyone’s dreams or personal and professional development.

Sign language is one of the languages spoken at our offices, along with Spanish and English. We produce every communication material in sign language and with subtitles and have a team devoted to this task.

We are a social impact company and our business model is driven by social key performance indicators (kpi's), audited by Bcorp. Achieving a productive, sustainable business is our means to grow our impact. We have been recognized as Best for the World 2018 and 2019 in the Customers Category by the international social impact movement Bcorp.  We proudly contribute to Sustainable Development Goal n. 10: Reduce Inequalities.

As for the background, the company was established in 2011 by Manel Alcaide and Ángel Albiach, and from very early on had a close relationship with the deaf community. In 2014, they created a free app for mobile accessibility, that was downloaded in 122 countries by thousands of people in a few weeks, which uncovered a necessity and the possibilities of economic and social impact that the development of solutions for hearing accessibility could have, prompting them to take a step further.

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eccocar
Madrid, Spain
Winner 2nd UNWTO Global Startup Competition

At eccocar we offer digital mobility solutions to accelerate the world's transition towards sustainable mobility. We provide the necessary technology for rental cars, car dealers and fleet managers to launch, operate and scale mobility services through a White Label App and Platform, multimodal and multi vehicular, where the final consumer can quickly and easily find nearby transportation options. Our technology is designed to obtain mobility data in real time, allowing our partners to optimize the efficiency of their fleet and minimize their operating costs.

Our main goal is to reduce the consumption of resources and emissions generated in the manufacture of vehicles. There are 1 billion vehicles in the world, if we manage to share all the vehicles, the number of new cars would decrease by 30%. Therefore, the reduction in automobiles would be 300 million, which means avoiding 18 billion tons of CO2.

We make it easier for car rentals and fleet managers to adapt to new mobility trends, making it possible for them to offer good shared mobility services, which permits a significant decrease in the number of vehicles needed to offer the same service level, which would have an impact on reducing car manufacturing. We also encourage the adoption of electric vehicles, significantly reducing pollution in the most populated areas. Finally, we free up public space in cities and reduce traffic congestion, making cities more livable.

We have also developed 'the eccobox': the first do-it-yourself hardware that can open the doors of any vehicle without installation, in order to offer an after market device that facilitates the digital transition to rent-a-car and corporate fleets.

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Contacless technology for mobility of a postpandemic world - Eccocar from Eccocar on Vimeo.

Eco View Resort
Jerash, Jordan
Finalist TTA: Middle East -Regional Commission Egypt

Eco View Resort is a unique and first of a kind in the Arab World located in a charming forest in Jerash- Thaghret Asfour to be a combination between an adventure park and a natural place to relax It also a human development center for training and developing life skills that contribute to building the personality of the participants and gives them the opportunity to simulate nature, overcome challenges and apply leadership, teamwork and many other skills.  

We offer a unique experience of living in tree houses designed in a classic country style and in harmony with Jerash environment, as an entertainment site suitable for families and individuals.  the camp consists of 10 nature-friendly chalets and tree houses with a capacity of 40 beds, a luxury tourist restaurant, multi-purpose training rooms accommodating up to 25 people each and a parking

The site of Eco View Resort  is prepared to accommodate up to 100 participants, a Challenge field with following adventure activities (high rope course, low rope course, big swing, Climbing tower, and zipline, challenge games, training area, football field and campfire squire). It’s equipped with Camping Area (30 Tents, 80 Beds), kitchen, outdoor restaurant and parking.

Problems

  • The needs for  integrated center for human development in nature
  • The needs today for entertaining, relaxation, enjoyment, travel and stress relief.
  • The Jordanians' dream of  experience living in tree-houses

Solution

  • To create all-encompassing nature escape made of stone and wooden cabins, built throughout our property. Offering a wide spectrum of outdoor activities ideal for team building and corporate events or for planning an adventure in the wild
  • Located in a charming forest in Jerash, Thaghret Asfour, Jordan Ranger offers a unique, first-of-its-kind resort in the Arab World, inviting you to recharge, rejuvenate and reconnect with nature. Jordan Ranger now includes nature-friendly cabins with a capacity of 40 beds, a restaurant that offers delicious local food and drinks and two fully-equipped theatre-style meeting rooms accommodating up to 25 people each.

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Kind Traveler
Los Angeles, United States of America
Finalist TTA: Chile - 2ndUNWTO Tourism Tech Adventure for the Americas: EdTech

More than 72% of travelers want their travel dollars to positively impact the destinations they visit. However, of those that want to travel sustainably and responsibly, half find it difficult and one-third find it confusing. Furthermore, hotels and tourism boards are challenged and are looking for ways to create sustainable and responsible travel initiatives.

Kind Traveler is the world’s first socially conscious Give + Get hotel booking and sustainable travel media platform that empowers travelers to positively impact local communities and the environment in the destinations they visit. Travelers unlock exclusive hotel rates and perks upon a $10 nightly donation to a vetted local charity that positively impacts the visiting destination, or to a charity of choice. 100% of donations go to charity, creating a triple win.

Travelers can choose to explore a growing collection of more than 120 Kind Hotels and 70 charities in 15 countries on KindTraveler.com. All of Kind Traveler’s charities are aligned with the UN Global Goals for Sustainable Development working to fight poverty, advance environmental sustainability and reduce inequality. Travelers can also search for hotels based on their ‘Kindness Factors’ – initiatives in place to advance wellness, sustainability, and community impact. In 2020, Kind Traveler received a Travel + Leisure Global Vision Award and in 2019, was a finalist with both the UNWTO Tourism Tech Adventure in Chile and Lufthansa Innovation Hub’s Changemaker Challenge in Germany. Find inspiration to #TravelKindly over on KindTraveler.com.

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Inclusive Society
Asahikawa, Japan
Finalist 1st Sports Tourism Startup Competition

Based on the concept “Inclusive Society”, people with disabilities ourselves work for different missions, such as attracting para-sports competitions and training camps, and organizing other related events, cooperating with local people, schools, companies and various other individuals and organizations. Through those missions, we accumulate the know-hows of the projects and events in order to achieve next goals.

Rather than waiting for someone to remove obstacles in front of us, we ourselves take a lead solve those problems, taking actions and spreading information regarding para-sports, tourism and public transportation in order to achieve an inclusive society.

We provide an opportunity to people with disabilities to obtain a connection with community by going out, participating different events and interacting with other people in society.

Sports exchanges are especially beneficial for children with disabilities. We actively hold para-sports experience classes at elementary schools to let the children learn importance of diversity and cooperation. Holding different kinds and levels of para-sports and related events leads to vitalize the local community as well as to gain recognition of the para-sports.

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