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Online Activity Specialist

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Tiqets, the attractions platform, nets $4 million in funding. Attractions marketplace for travelers and travel companies Tiqets is set to announce a $4 million equity Series A round led by Capital Mills, a Dutch venture capital firm.

Tiqets, the attractions platform, nets $4 million in funding

The founders of the 3-year-old startup, based in Amsterdam, raised $1.45 million previously. Tiqets, which has 35 full-time employees, offers travelers mobile tickets to attractions, museums, and entertainment, through its direct-to-consumer channels. Founded at the end of 2013, Tiqets also has a distribution partner business, helping distribute bookable content to online travel agencies, hotels, travel agencies, and other third-parties via API integrations. It connects to an attractions’ ticketing system or else lists the supplier’s tickets using its own inventory system. It also gives to suppliers the technology they need to handle mobile and instant bookings if they don’t have their own vendor. Tiqets’s database platform is notable for offering instant and mobile tickets. Elzinga added: Excursiopedia expands outdoor tours and activities via RangeUp acquisition. More developments in the tours and activities sector this week as Excursiopedia has acquired outdoor-activity specialist RangeUp with terms of the deal undisclosed.

Excursiopedia expands outdoor tours and activities via RangeUp acquisition

Excursiopedia plans to integrate the RangeUp database of surf, ski, trekking, diving and sailing experiences into its own platform providing access to a wider tours and activities range as well as some budget ‘ready-made’ tours including accommodation, food and activity. According to the Excursiopedia blog, it will take two months to combine the businesses. RangeUp founder Sergey Zadyraka, who becomes head of the outdoor activities division with the acquisition, says the deal will enable it to increase sales and resolve some technical issues.

He also mentions a goal to build a hotel reservation service as part of the tours and activities offering down the road. The tours and activities company launched in January 2011 (TLabs here) and received ‘six figure’ seed funding in June of the same year. TUI Travel buys tours and activities specialist Isango. Tours and activities just got that little bit more interesting with news that European tour operating giant TUI Travel has bought tours and activities provider Isango.

TUI Travel buys tours and activities specialist Isango

Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Kayak ends tours and activities on mobile via GetYourGuide, cites low popularity with users. Mobile users with tours and activities – a perfect match, right?

Kayak ends tours and activities on mobile via GetYourGuide, cites low popularity with users

Perhaps not so obvious after all, with Kayak deciding to end its partner deal with GetYourGuide. The US-based travel search service discontinued its contract with GetYourGuide after realising the idea of being able to book in-destination things-to-do and attractions had not resonated with users. The partnership was signed in August 2011 and saw GetYourGuide featured as the sole provider of tours and attraction on the Kayak apps. It was the first such deal Kayak had signed with a tour and activity platform. Users were able to search for various products and then make a booking within a GetYourGuide-branded screen. Hopes were high for the pair to have a good run with the service, especially given Kayak’s apps at the time were soaring in popularity in the US. On why the partnership was discontinued, a Kayak official says the company makes “decisions to add and cull features based on usage and plans for our product”.

Making money from tours and activities on the web. NB: This is a guest post by Johannes Reck, CEO of GetYourGuide.

Making money from tours and activities on the web

We have all read the buzz around tours and activities recently, spurred in part by a study revealing the vertical is actually bigger than cruise and rental car combined. The report and subsequent travel industry interest was grist to the mills of evangelists and niche players in this field. But are we seeing the rise of a marketplace with vast distribution potential, similar to what the hotel category has been in the past 15 years? The realistic answer is, unfortunately, no. GetYourGuide lands $2M funding round from Brent Hoberman group and Swoodoo founders. More investment coming into travel startups this week, with GetYourGuide landing $2 million from a string of high profile investors.

GetYourGuide lands $2M funding round from Brent Hoberman group and Swoodoo founders

The round comes from PROfounders Capital, a European VC fund which counts Lastminute.com co-founder Brent Hoberman as one of its investors alongside Andy Phillipps (founder of Active Hotels) and Karen Hanton (founder of TopTable) Others investing in the tour and activity marketplace service include founders of Swoodoo, Christian Saller, Wolfgang Heigl and Lars Jankowfsky. PROfounders general partner Sean Seton-Rogers will sit on the GetYourGuide advisory board as part of the investment round. GetYourGuide’s only external investment so far had come in the form of $350,000 in 2010 from Zurich Cantonal Bank and Roland Zeller, founder of Swiss online travel agency Travel.ch. GetYourGuide to be sole provider of tours and activities to TUI agents. Travel agents working with TUI in Germany will have their pick of tours and activities by way of a new supplier after the tour operator turned over responsibility to GetYourGuide.

GetYourGuide to be sole provider of tours and activities to TUI agents

Sightseeing tours, attractions and things to do worldwide. Tours, sightseeing tours, activities & things to do. Viator News & Press Releases. San Francisco, CA - Proving that travel really is about the experience you have once you arrive in your destination, the sale of travel activities, such as sightseeing tours, events and attractions in the United States outperformed the overall U.S. leisure travel sales market during 2009's market turmoil by 11 percentage points*, according to the soon-to-be released PhoCusWright study "When They Get There (and Why They Go)".

Viator News & Press Releases

This trend is expected to continue as online sales of activities in the U.S. are expected to grow by 13 percent this year and 11 percent in 2012, outpacing U.S. online leisure travel sales overall, expected to grow 8 percent and 9 percent respectively. Trip activities account for $26.8 billion** of the U.S. travel market, which is more than car rental ($14.2 billion) and cruise ($12 billion) - combined - and nearly three-times as much as packaged travel ($10 billion), according to the report. "We? About Viator Media Contact Kate Sullivan pr@viator.com. Viator, Inc - San Francisco, US-CA, 415-503-3969.

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