bookingkit, Germany’s leading online booking and management software solution for tour and activity providers, has been named “Travel Start-Up 2017” by the Travel Industry Club (TIC) and Verband Internet Reisevertrieb e.V. (VIR), the German Internet Travel Marketing Association, as part of the Travel Start-Up 2017 competition. The prize, awarded last week in Berlin, marks bookingkit’s fourth distinction for up-and-coming businesses this year.
The votes are in: a 20-member jury of experts and figures from the tourism industry have named bookingkit “Travel Start-Up 2017”. The Berlin-based startup’s ambitious efforts to digitalize the tour and activity industry clearly set it apart from the competition — currently, less than 25 percent of the estimated $130 billion USD global market supports online booking. In the run-up to the competition, bookingkit won out against 15 finalists in the Start-Up Nights competition held in Berlin, Frankfurt and Munich, and was awarded a purse of 25,000 Euro.
Lukas C. C. Hempel, managing director and founder of bookingkit © Offenblende / Devaki]
“Roughly 80 percent of all tour and activity providers operate strictly offline. Our software provides a way for precisely these companies to make the digital switch and grow their business,” says Lukas C. C. Hempel, founder and managing director of bookingkit. “We are incredibly proud and honored to be named “Travel Start-Up 2017” by the tourism industry. This is an important distinction for us — one that we owe to the team of dedicated men and women who support us day in and day out.”
Europe’s leading provider of digital infrastructure for tours and activities: The bookingkit platform features a wide array of digitalized recreational activity offerings, from quad tours to escape rooms and cooking classes, made possible by the company’s smart software solution. This is coupled with a powerful Channel Management solution which provides large tourism service providers with real-time, around-the-clock access to its inventory of tours and activities. bookingkit is hence the technical driver in the world’s third largest tourism market after flight and hotel bookings.
In recent months, bookingkit has won both national and international awards. In May of this year, the startup was awarded American market research firm Phocuswright’s much sought-after innovation award in the category of “Travel Technology” in Europe. In June, bookingkit was honored by the Verband Internet Reisevertrieb e.V. (VIR) in the category of “Established”, as part of the German innovation competition Sprungbett, and placed second for best innovation in the category of “Travel”. In September, founder and Managing Director Lukas C. C. Hempel was awarded the highly distinguished “Top under 30” prize from the tourism business magazine fvw.
About the Travel Industry Club (TIC)
The Travel Industry Club, founded in 2005, is the only independent business club that brings makers and movers together from every segment of the travel industry. The club’s roughly 800-strong membership base consists of leaders and young representatives from the travel industry, including members of management in transportation, the hotel industry, travel agencies, airports, associations, technology providers, insurance and consulting, as well as members of the press and academic lecturers. The Club sees itself as an innovative industry think tank with the goal of improving media coverage and public and political awareness of the economic importance of the travel industry.
About the Verband Internet Reisevertrieb e.V. (VIR)
The Verband Internet Reisevertrieb e.V. (VIR), the German Internet Travel Marketing Association, is a German representative of digital tourism. According to the Forschungsgemeinschaft Urlaub und Reisen e.V., the German Research Foundation for Vacation and Travel, digital tourism in Germany accounts for roughly 56 percent of vacation travel with at least one overnight stay being booking in advance online. The VIR’s members include more than 70 companies which are active in the digital tourism industry. These are organized into four clusters: OTA, Suppliers & Tour Operators, Service & Travel Technology and Start-Ups. The VIR acts as a point of contact for consumers, the media, policy makers and the industry itself concerning any and all topics related to digital tourism.