Each year, Visit Austin welcomes millions of travelers to Austin. Prior to their visit, travelers might start their exploration of all the Texas capital has to offer on Visit Austin’s website and then, upon arriving into the city, stop by its visitor center for more “things to do” options and ideas. Being the first introductory point for many travelers presented the Convention and Visitors Bureau with the challenge of figuring out how to best market Austin to travelers in a way that serves both those travelers and the greater Austin community.
Historically, Visit Austin had partnerships with a handful of tour companies operating in the downtown area. This enabled travelers to walk into the visitor center, purchase a tour ticket and take a tour nearby. Ticket allocations were limited though and many tours had to be purchased in advance. The process was time consuming and cumbersome and required manual reconciliation.
Visit Austin turned to OnceThere to help them to not only provide last minute booking options to travelers but also to manage payments and reporting for them. OnceThere allows Visit Austin to work with over 80 tours and activities throughout Austin, making them available on the Visit Austin website as well as in the visitor center for immediately confirmed booking. OnceThere was able to get Visit Austin’s solution up and running within weeks.
Within months of using OnceThere’s technology and operator sourcing services, Visit Austin was able to scale from selling only five local operators’ tours to over 20 of their preferred operators’ tours and activities. As a result, during their busy summer season, they saw an 83% increase in year-over-year growth in overall bookings in the first year. Since launching OnceThere, Visit Austin’s management has also cut the amount of time it takes them to reconcile payments and reports by over five hours a week.
Find out more about how OnceThere can help your Destination Marketing Organization or Visitors Bureau achieve similar results!