Online travel agencies really took off around 1996 with an introduction of Expedia. Today, the online travel booking agency is a mature industry, but still, it is in a state of constant evolution. New startups are carving their own niches in this competitive space. Arrivedo is one such startup.
What is Arrivedo?
Arrivedo, a proprietary content management system based in Peru, was conceived in San Francisco and Lima by Alonso Franco and Rodrigo Lopez. Its mission is “Helping hotel guests experience unique local recommendations.” The company allows users to book hotels with “neighborhood guides”. In a sense, the site is an online version of a hotel concierge with one big difference. Travelers can read about local attractions and entertainment options before they book a hotel room. That information not only helps them choose a hotel that is located in an area that is most attractive to them but also provides a unique perspective of local residents, travel writers, and former guests. This approach is meant to give hotels a hand up in their competition with Airbnb. Currently, the Website lists information on 400 hotels in 75 cities in Europe; South, Central, and North America; Australia; India; Turkey; South Africa; Cambodia; Armenia; Kenya; and Sri Lanka.
What are “Neighborhood Guides”?
Simply put “Neighborhood Guides” are articles written by experts, with the help of locals, on the attractions surrounding a particular hotel. But they are not just guides on restaurants or tours; they also include maps and routes thanks to Foursquare and OpenStreetMaps technology. The guides are not meant to be just another review type service. They are created to provide a truly unique, local experience not only on known attractions but especially ones that may only be known to the residents. After all, how many travel guides can tell you where you can find a restaurant catering to backpackers traveling with pets? Or that hidden little architectural gem like a hidden subway station beneath City Hall in New York City? That’s the kind of information the guides aim to provide. To create that kind of content requires interviewing hotel personnel, local residents and establishments, and doing a lot of research. The most significant benefit to ever discerning travelers is having all that information all in one place.
What’s next for Arrivedo?
Curated hospitality is a niche business, and Arrivedo is a newcomer, but it already faces stiff competition. Google and TripAdvisor already provide hotel recommendations. Then there are Airbnb, GetYourGuide, Ceetiz, Viator, and our.guide to name just a few. Staying relevant and competitive is not going to be easy for Arrivedo. Its hotel metasearch feature enables the users to find hotels with affordable prices in the neighborhoods most desirable to them. However, if Arrivedo wants to stay relevant, it has to convince the hotels that teaming up with it will increase their SEO and provide value to their brand. And not all hotels are sure of that. Still, the company has very ambitious plans for its future. It already pre-populated 7,000 hotels with a neighborhood guide information and plans to have such guides for 90% of hotels by 2019. That’s quite an undertaking in a field that is continuously in motion.