prnewswire | July 14, 2023
GetYourGuide, leading online travel booking platform, announced today the launch of four new 'Originals by GetYourGuide' — curated, one-of-a-kind experiences exclusively available on the platform — that will respectfully immerse travelers in Kyoto's rich culture and well-known traditions, offering unique access to never-before-seen locations. Created in collaboration with the Kyoto City Tourism Association (DMO Kyoto), GetYourGuide will open centuries-old doors, allowing travelers to appreciate the local heritage of the city and dive deep into Japanese culture at a time when travel to Asia-Pacific destinations is expected to rise by 94%.3
"After reopening to the world late last year, travelers are once again eager for a glimpse of Japan's history and traditions, and Kyoto, which has one of the largest collections of UNESCO World Heritage Sites, is at the top of their list," said Jean-Gabriel Duveau, VP of Brand at GetYourGuide. "Many of Japan's culturally significant sites are hard to access — or even off-limits to visitors — until now. Our newest Originals by GetYourGuide will help travelers discover Kyoto's sacred traditions and rich culture through immersive experiences that take them off the beaten path."
GetYourGuide's four new, bucket list-worthy experiences in Kyoto include:
Unlock Ninna-Ji, a UNESCO World Heritage temple and learn the art of Wagashi:
Commissioned by the imperial family, Ninna-Ji Temple in western Kyoto houses one of the longest-standing temple buildings and is recognized as safeguarding some of the best examples of Japan's temple craftsmanship. In this once-in-a-lifetime experience, travelers will unlock the gates to the Ninna-Ji's imperial and spiritual history before it opens to the public. A resident monk will guide them through the halls, including areas usually closed to the public, until they arrive at Ninna-Ji's private tea house where they will learn how to make traditional Japanese confections known as wagashi and enjoy a traditional tea ceremony. Travelers will prepare these delicacies instructed by a wagashi chef who has been recognized as one of the best by the Japanese government.
Uncover the hidden world of Japanese maiko:
Kyoto, the former imperial capital, is the birthplace of geiko (Kyoto's geisha) culture, training female performance artists to entertain guests at teahouses and social events by singing, dancing, performing music, hosting tea ceremonies, and serving food and drinks. In an extraordinary opportunity to learn from and interact with a maiko — a geiko apprentice — travelers will be guided through the historic Gion district, Kyoto's famous geiko neighborhood, by a knowledgeable local guide. They will learn about the traditional customs and practices of maiko and geiko, then witness an authentic maiko performance inside a teahouse, get to play maiko games and ask questions directly from the apprentice — an opportunity that is rarely granted to the public.
Take in the ancient art of Noh theatre:
Travelers will venture to the beautiful, remote village of Ohara nestled in the mountains of northern Kyoto, where visitors to Kyoto rarely stray and a prominent Noh family resides. In a guided tour of the village, they will learn about Noh, an ancient performing art combining dance and theater that is still practiced today. Permitted inside a Noh Master's studio, travelers will see his costumes and centuries-old masks close up, and witness a private performance in his home. At the pinnacle of this experience, participants will be allowed to try Noh themselves — a rare event since traditionally, only Noh families may practice this art form.
Practice a guided meditation with a Zen monk:
Zen gardens and temples have long been a focal point for visitors to Kyoto and are the lifeblood of the city. In this exclusive experience, travelers will have a rare opportunity to experience the daily life of a Zen monk and gain insight into the history and practices of the temple as they enter the Jōju-ji Temple, a hidden gem known locally for its spectacular summer maple foliage. Here, they will learn about the history of Zen and its impact on Japanese culture, then experience a traditional Zen meditation with the temple's resident monk and get a glimpse into how this ancient wisdom lives on today. The exclusive visit will conclude with a lunch of Shojin, the traditional vegetarian fare of Zen Buddhist monks.
To book a visit to any of the four Kyoto Originals, please visit the GetYourGuide website. Reservations are available on a first come, first served basis on select dates through November 2023.
GetYourGuide, is the leading global online marketplace for unforgettable travel experiences. Travelers use GetYourGuide to discover and book the best and most unique activities in any destination — including guided tours by local experts, culinary excursions, cooking and craft classes, skip-the-line tickets, as well as exclusive bucket list experiences.
Today, GetYourGuide offers more than 75,000 activities from over 16,000 experience creators. Since launch, travelers from over 150 countries have booked more than 80 million tours, activities and attraction tickets through GetYourGuide.
Powered by a global team of more than 700 travel and tech experts, the company is headquartered in Berlin, Germany, and has 17 local offices around the world (including in the UK and USA).
Destination and Tourism
globenewswire | July 24, 2023
Treasure Global Inc an innovative technology solutions provider, today announced that the Company has signed a collaboration agreement with VCI Global Limited (NASDAQ: VCIG) (“VCI Global”), a multi-disciplinary consulting group focused on business and technology, for the development of an artificial intelligence (“AI”)-powered travel platform as a new offering for travellers in Malaysia.
VCI Global has selected TGL to develop the AI-powered platform to function as a high-tech portable concierge App, utilizing the latest advanced technologies to provide relevant travel recommendations in real time. By leveraging advanced AI-powered solutions, the app will aim to revolutionize the travel experience, assisting users in planning travel and related activities, such as suggesting places to explore, dining during their travels in Malaysia and to improve on seamless bookings for flights, hotels and car rentals. The platform is designed to break down language barriers as well, with advanced translation functions.
As part of the agreement, VCI Global will pay a service fee to TGL worth USD$1 million. TGL will develop, design and produce the integrated software platform and provide ongoing maintenance for the AI-powered travel app, which is targeted to launch next year. TGL and VCI Global will share ownership and profits generated from this collaboration on a 50:50 basis.
“We believe that global tourism has returned to its pre-pandemic levels, and we are well-placed to capitalize on the post-pandemic 'revenge travel' phenomenon through our collaboration with VCI Global. Our partnership to develop this app will leverage our combined resources and expertise, namely VCI’s technology experience with TGL’s software development skills, extensive user base and connections with merchants and underscores VCI’s trust in TGL's capabilities. The Malaysian digital economy is projected to grow to USD$34 billion by 2025, of which USD$8 billion1 is expected to be related to online travel-related activities. Our AI-powered travel platform will be a catalyst for growth, unlocking tremendous opportunities in the online travel sector. TGL’s unwavering focus on cutting-edge technologies and strategic partnerships solidifies its position as a trailblazer in the travel industry, strongly positioned to meet the evolving needs of modern travellers,” said Sam Teo, Chief Executive Officer of Treasure Global.
“As in our previous collaborations, I am humbled that once again we are able to play our part by offering our expertise in enhancing the landscape of the travel industry as global tourism migrates itself to high-tech platforms to maximise travellers’ experience. I am very confident that this AI-powered travel platform will act as a growth catalyst for Malaysia’s tourism industry. As these (tourist) arrivals numbers are still below the pre-Covid level, we strongly believe that visitors to Malaysia will increase exponentially in the near future, especially as travel is made easier,” said Dato’ Victor Hoo, Group Executive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of VCI Global.
About VCI Global Limited
VCI Global is a multi-disciplinary consulting group with key advisory practices in the areas of business and technology. The Company provides business and boardroom strategy services, investor relation services, and technology consultancy services. Its clients range from small-medium enterprises and government-linked agencies to publicly traded companies across a broad array of industries. VCI Global operates solely in Malaysia, with clients predominantly from Malaysia, but also serves some clients from China, Singapore, and the US.
About Treasure Global Inc
Treasure Global is a Malaysian solutions provider developing innovative technology platforms. Treasure Global has developed two technology solutions: the ZCITY App, a unique digital ecosystem that transforms and simplifies the e-payment experience for consumers, while simultaneously allowing them to earn rewards; and TAZTE, a digital F&B management system providing merchants with a one-stop management and automated solution to digitalize their businesses. Treasure Global also acts as a master franchiser in SEA for popular restaurant chains, while providing them with the TAZTE solution. As of March 31, 2023, ZCITY had over 2,400,000 registered users.
prnewswire | August 14, 2023
ALTOUR, one of the world's largest travel management companies and a division of Internova Travel Group, is launching an innovative new product, ALTOUR Capture, that will help corporate clients keep better track of their employee travel.
Even the most well-managed business travel programs experience some leakage — with employees booking trips outside the TMC of record. That can lead to a loss of savings acquired through negotiations with preferred suppliers and a breakdown in duty of care obligations.
ALTOUR Capture solves the leakage problem by allowing travel managers at companies that are ALTOUR clients to view all travel bookings made by employees, whether or not they go through the TMC of record. Travel managers can then leverage that information for use in negotiations, conduct a price comparison and wrap duty of care to ensure travel notifications and traveller safety. This real-customer data will help drive change in one of business travel's thorniest issues.
"Capturing all travel bookings is crucial for providing proper duty of care to employees," said Dr. John Rose, Chief Risk & Security Officer for ALTOUR. "It enables the company to proactively manage risks, respond to emergencies effectively, comply with legal requirements, and foster a culture of safety and employee well-being."
With customer data driving change, ALTOUR Capture is the result of a partnership with three leading technology companies in the travel industry: CapTrav, capturing and aggregating off-channel booking data to populate ALTOUR's reporting environment; Prime Numbers Technology, providing best-in-class travel management reporting; and Oversee (formerly Fairfly), providing re-shopping for off-channel bookings when it makes sense for the client. Under the direction of Dr. John Rose, ALTOUR is committed to ensuring a more holistic duty of care program, no matter where the traveller books.
Brandon Strauss, CapTrav President and a partner and cofounder of KesselRun Corporate Travel Solutions, says KesselRun has been studying the problem of off-booking for more than 20 years across clients of all sizes and industries. He estimates airline leakage at 15 percent or more and hotel leakage at 40 percent or more.
"Even with world-class best efforts, there will always be off-channel bookings for a travel manager to deal with," said Lee Thomas, ALTOUR's Chief Operating Officer and President, Business Travel. "Road warrior preferences, loyalty incentives, supplier encouragement, travel disruptions, last-minute changes and moderate travel policies all contribute to off-channel booking. By connecting the travel manager to this off-channel world, ALTOUR Capture closes the loop on managed travel."
"We are thrilled to announce the seamless integration of CapTrav's data into the Prime Analytics platform," said Mark Bresnahan, President, Prime Numbers Technology. "This partnership empowers ALTOUR clients with an unparalleled wellspring of travel data reporting. By combining off-channel booking data, GDS itinerary information, TMC data, and post-trip expense details, we offer a comprehensive solution. Clients can effortlessly oversee their travel program, accessing real-time reports, dynamic dashboards, and automated stakeholder presentations directly to their inbox."
"Oversee is proud to partner with ALTOUR on launching ALTOUR Capture," said Aviel Siman-Tov, cofounder and CEO. "Our partnership expands upon our mission of leveraging technology to deliver cost and operational efficiencies for our partners and customers. We have consistently achieved significant savings for our clients that allow budgets to be stretched while optimizing their overall travel program."
With sales of more than $3 billion, ALTOUR is one of the largest travel management companies in the United States and around the world. Serving the corporate and leisure luxury and mid-markets and entertainment community, ALTOUR has over 43 offices and nearly 700 travel professionals worldwide. In addition to travel management services, ALTOUR companies include ALTOUR Air, ALTOUR Leisure, ALTOUR Entertainment, ALTOUR Meetings and Incentives and ALTOUR Global Network.