Offering local tours and activities is a multibillion-dollar business, with the online travel agencies having shown a growing interest in this sector. Expedia alone is looking to grow its local tours and activities sales fivefold – from approximately $400 million a year to over $2 billion.

Expedia currently has 4,000 suppliers providing 27,000 tours and activities worldwide. Airbnb, through its Experiences offering, has been rolling out tours and activities in many of its key destinations with the goal of bringing its offerings to 1,000 cities.

Recently, acquired Fairharbor, and TripAdvisor acquired Bokun, both cloud‐based software platforms that enable local tour and activities operators to make their services bookable online. This sector is greatly fragmented, consisting of millions of small, independently owned operators.

This explains the lack of businesses offering bookings online. They simply do not have the resources available for online booking systems and website technology.

Another reason is travel consumer preferences. According to a consumer report from Arival, which surveyed adults in the United States planning a trip this summer, only 24% of travel consumers will book most of their activities before departure. Read more from…

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