Each year beginning of May, more than 500 CEOs, Ministers and investors from the tourism industry meet in Luzern for the World Tourism Forum. The Forum aims in gathering global leaders of the travel, tourism and hospitality industries to learn about the new development and brainstorm on how to adapt to the changes happening. And to meet startups !
This year, World Tourism Forum is organizing a Startup Innovation Camp (coaching day with presentation to the jury) the day before the forum. Among 170+ applications coming from all over the world (more than 50 countries), 16 finalists were selected, segmented in 4 categories : Impact, Transaction, Destination and Hospitality. The finalists come from Europe (Cyprus, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain, the UK), Asia (India, Sri Lanka) and the USA.
They were selected by a jury leaded by well-known Swiss entrepreneur and investor Roland Zeller (founder of Travel.ch), comprising Sam Friend (experienced executive, investor and entrepreneur, ex-Wotif.com and TravelCandy.com), Amel Karboul (former Minister of Tourism in Tunisia), Axel Schulze (serial entrepreneur and leading a startup accelerator) and René Zeier (co-head of Smart-Up programme at University of Applied Sciences and Arts Lucerne).
I’ll be attending the World Tourism Forum (as you probably know by now, I have a strong interest in travel and tourism with Planify!) this year, so do not hesitate if you’d like to grab a coffee!
The 16 tourism startups are the following:
Bidroom (category « Transaction») is a revolutionary private hotel-booking platform that generates direct reservations without charging any commission and provides the best rates for guests.
CityStasher (category « Destination ») is a digital platform for left luggage, connecting travelers with local businesses who store their bags for 60% less than station facilities.
Daytrip (category « Transaction») is a platform for traveling with local drivers who drive them from one city to another, exploring sights along the way that would otherwise be difficult to reach using traditional public transportation.
Green City Solutions (category « Impact») addresses the global problem of air pollution by combining a special, vertical installed moss culture with internet-of-things technology.
Hello Here (category « Hospitality») is a platform designed to improve hosts-guests engagement and upsell on-demand services provided by hosts in short term rentals
Hospitality Leaders (category « Hospitality») is a hospitality industry community portal aggregating a global candidate pool enabling digital talent management and recruitment for the hospitality industry worldwide.
Hypermedia Interactive Services (category « Impact») is a Startup that has developed a bespoke learning and performance ecosystem solution in sustainable practices for the hospitality industry.
Global Himalayan Expedition (category « Impact») is focused towards providing clean energy, digital education and wireless connectivity access to remote Himalayan communities through impact tourism.
Orbirental (category « Hospitality») is a SaaS Technology platform that enables vacation rental management companies to streamline and scale their business through automation and integration.
Swiss Institute (category « Impact») is a game changer in developing tourism and skills in Sri Lanka and South Asia.
Paris Helpline (category « Destination ») service is the first tourism travelers caring service aimed at any major destination of the world.
Servantrip (category « Hospitality») is the first e-Commerce Global platform that allows local “drivers, travel guides, interpreters, and legal advice” to access easily to international clients.
Tastemakers Africa (category « Destination ») is an online marketplace where you can list, discover, and book epic experiences in African cities.
TimeLooper (category « Destination ») is a global augmented virtual reality production and content distribution company that specializes in the development and delivery of immersive experiences.
WeTravel (category « Transaction») is the payment platform for multi-day group tours. Thousands of travel companies, yoga retreat leaders and student trip organizers use WeTravel to collect funds and manage group trips.