Latest posts by Barbara Črgar (see all)
- What Tour and Activity Operators Should Know about Walking Tours - February 13, 2018
- How to Start a Profitable Food Tour Business - February 2, 2018
- Nomination for the Prestigious “Zlatna Kuna” Award - November 10, 2017
Today’s experienced travelers want more choice & personalization. With that in mind, tour operators try to update with new trends in tourism. Nowadays, something new popped out and is keeping everybody’s attention. We are talking about – food tour business.
If you have ever seen Anthony Bourdain you know that food is a wonderful way to explore the local culture. Gastronomic tourism is one of the most dynamic and creative segments of tourism. Gastronomy enables you to tell the story of a destination’s history, culture, and people. Today, both destinations and tour operators have realized the importance of food tours. It benefits local, regional and national economic development.
How to Start a Food Tour Business?
One of the main reasons to start is that it can help generate extra profit for your tour or activity business. Over the third of tourist, spending is devoted to food. It seems good enough to get your hands in the food tour business, right?
Find Your Niche
‘Finding your niche’ is pretty much the most crucial aspect of setting up a business as tour operators. Niche can be traditional cuisine, pastry restaurants, food trucks, farmer’s markets or a mixture. Don’t forget to do your homework. Search if there are food tour operators in your city or destination. Find out their focus.
You want to choose a niche that is not congested. When you find your food niche think of it as a brand. Build brand awareness online and get known by the media, for that particular niche.
Write a Business Plan
It all comes down to this. A business plan provides direction and keeps you on track. Your business plan should include:
- a mission statement
- a company summary
- an executive summary
- a service or product offerings
- a description of a target market and marketing plan
- financial projections and the cost of the operation.
Working out the right numbers required to make your tour profitable will also be a key consideration.
A well-planned Itinerary
You have picked the niche and write down a business plan. Next, on “to-do” list is creating itinerary for your tour. Take your time and inform yourself about:
- the best local eateries
- distances between one another
- opening and closing times
- the best offers on their menus
- authentic offers they can boast about
- capacities during specific times.
Even though, the itinerary is important, stay flexible with some customer requirements. Customized tours will give you one of the biggest boosts. That way you can get good reviews or ranking by simply tailoring a few things. These are all essentials for providing a great experience for your customers.
Pick a Neighbourhood
It is important to choose a neighborhood that is nice to walk through. Focus on the small part of the city with restaurants, markets, and eateries close by. That keeps the gaps between tastings short and your customers interested. People want to indulge their taste buds, not to go on a walking tour. The core of your new business are the relationships with local restaurant owners and staff members. It’s important to maintain these relationships to improve the food tour experience.
Be an Insider
A lot depends on who is actually leading the tour. Only in-depth knowledge of the food is not always enough. Many tour guides also depend on their personalities, sprinkling the tours with personal anecdotes. Dig deep and find out the history of not only the restaurants or street food stalls, but also of your city and lighthearted facts to hold guests attention.
Market Your Business
Now you have started newand took all necessary steps. But what about marketing? To have successful food tour, promotion is mandatory.
Travelers find out about tours searching internet reviews and rankings or through word of mouth. Social media presence on channels like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram will help you raise awareness. Do a step further and invite bloggers and influencers for a free food tour. In return, they will write about your tour and promote your business among their readers. Last but not least, list your tour on websites such as Tripadvisor, Yelp, Gogobot or Zomato.
Tour operators need to be updated not just with trends in tourism, nor with the benefit of an online tour booking software.
Using an online tour booking software will make your life easy. With online tour booking software, you save time, reduce costs and increase productivity. Something that will most definitely prove itself useful to you when you start a food tour business. Sounds good, right?
Reach out to us if you’d appreciate some help! If you have any questions or comments, feel free to contact us or share it right here.
If you find this article useful, tell your friends about it by sharing it on your social media channels!