Our Spotlight interview with TripAdvisor on the democratisation of tourism

Posted by Lucy Fuggle on Feb 10, 2017

This Spotlight interview has been translated from the original Spanish by María Eugenia Coppola.

Every month, 390 million users log on to TripAdvisor all over the world. Can you visualise how big that community is? It's more than eight times the total population of Spain or Argentina! Without a doubt, the platform offers something that consumers are looking for.

But what value does TripAdvisor offer companies in the tourism sector? How can you improve the positioning of your business? How much time should you devote to the platform? Discover the answers to these questions and more in this interview with Blanca Zayas, Associate Director of Communications for TripAdvisor Spain and Brazil.

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Spotlight: Barcelona Architecture Walks, discovering the city through the eyes of an architect

Posted by Lucy Fuggle on Dec 21, 2016

This Spotlight article has been translated from the original Spanish created and published by María Eugenia Coppola.

Miguel Ángel Borras is partner and co-founder of Barcelona Architecture Walks, an idea that, for the last six years, has invited visitors to discover Barcelona through the eyes of an architect.

Since its founding, the company has received the TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence every year since 2013 and been named one of the five best architecture tours in the world. And in 2016, Barcelona Architecture Walks began using TrekkSoft to help their company reach even greater heights.

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Spotlight on Oscar Almgren, owner of the outdoor adventure company Uteguiden

Posted by Nicole Kow on Dec 16, 2016

Standing on a boat and gazing up towards the cliffs along the fjords of Norway is one thing. Skiing down those cliffs on fresh untouched snow, is most definitely a different experience altogether.

Oscar Almgren, founder and owner of Uteguiden AS, runs an outdoor adventure company that lets customers do that, and more. With his business growing fast, I was lucky to be able to interview him, even if it was just via email. His words spring out at you and his passion for what he does is evident in his answers. I'm excited to share his story with you.

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Spotlight on Bus2alps and lessons learnt from Europe's leading student tour operator

Posted by Nicole Kow on Nov 22, 2016

In 13 years, Bus2alps and has grown to become the largest and most reputable student tour operator in Europe. Based in Interlaken, Bus2alps aims to provide the best experiences to meet youth and student travel demands, and strives consistently to achieve that. 

We caught up with Vanessa Latessa, CEO of Bus2alps to learn about how this bus tour company has grown from 50 to more than 500 customers per tour in just over a decade.

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Spotlight on Segway City Tours Belgium, the largest segway company in the country

Posted by Nicole Kow on Sep 23, 2016

Founded by three partners Christophe Tassenon, Wim Lefebre and Erny Van de Woestyne who met at a networking event, Segway City Tours Belgium is the largest segway tour operator in Belgium. For this article, I interviewed one of the co-founders, Christophe, who tells me about his experience prior to starting the company, the business itself and what it's like to run a tour business in the 21st century. 

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Spotlight on Pearl Island Bahamas, and what it takes to run a successful island getaway

Posted by Nicole Kow on Sep 2, 2016

Pearl Island Bahamas opened its doors to tourists and locals in June 2016, after being idle for a decade. Philipp Rebmann, the Marketing and Sales Manager for the company,spoke to me about the company and how they plan to lead the way for island excursions in the Bahamas.

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Spotlight on Aqua Mania Adventures, a top tour and activity company in the Caribbean

Posted by Nicole Kow on Aug 22, 2016

For this Spotlight edition, we're focusing on Aqua Mania Adventures, the largest tour and activity company in St Maarten and one of the top operators in the Caribbean. The company provides all sorts of experiences to travellers: from hiking to diving to cruising around St Maarten in a catamaran, customers are spoilt with choices.

I was lucky enough to interview Debby Lind-Steyn who currently works as a manager at the company. Having 25 years of experience under her belt, I'm excited to share some of her pearls of wisdom with all of you. 

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Spotlight on Bastimentos Alive and what it's like to start your own tour company

Posted by Nicole Kow on Jun 30, 2016

It's 12pm in Panama and it's starting to rain. I'm greeted from across the world by a cheerful young man who begins to tell me about his 10-month old start up on an island called Bastimentos Alive.

Tom Pelgrum runs incredible day tours on an island called Isla Bastimentos, and throws a mean barbecue after (according to his reviews on TripAdvisor). His tours bring customers through lush jungles and swamps, to meadows, farms and secluded beaches. His goal for each tour is simple, to make people feel alive. 

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Spotlight on Simon Bosshart, Director of Asia Pacific and Global Accounts for Switzerland Tourism, and his insight into the Chinese market

Posted by Nicole Kow on Jun 22, 2016

Last week, I had the pleasure of interviewing Simon Bosshart, the Director of Global Accounts and the Director for Asia Pacific for Switzerland Tourism. His career began ten years ago and he spent seven of those years in China.
After that, he moved back to Switzerland where he is now based, but travels frequently to China and the rest of Asia Pacific to encourage more people to spend their next holiday in Switzerland. My interview with Simon lasted close to an hour and it was clear that he possessed a wealth of information about the Chinese market and enthusiastically shared it with me. 
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Spotlight: Meet Chantel, founder of the ecotourism company Natural Greece

Posted by Nicole Kow on Jun 17, 2016

When I think of Greece, I think of Santorini with its pristine waters, Athens for its ancient Acropolis, and Meteora (because I interviewed Visit Meteora). However, little has been done to attract people to its abundant and diverse wildlife, and less has been done to conserve it. 

That is what’s special about Natural Greece. They offer incredible nature-based tours in Greece that introduce clients to all sorts of wildlife, while ensuring that the entire experience remains sustainable and eco-friendly. This week on Spotlight, I am delighted to interview Chantel Kyriakopoulou-Beuvink, founder of the tour company Natural Greece.

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