There are many different types of tours you can find on the market today such as boat tours, Segway tours, food tours or city tours. Diversity is what makes this industry rich in terms of experiences, but at the same time it can also be difficult when the tour business begins looking for a way to handle online reservations. The reason is because no two tour businesses are alike. Each has different needs, prices, and schedules. For example, a Segway tour bases its availability on the total number of vehicles (Segway) available, but often a boat tour, bases its availability on the number of persons allowed in a single boat. Another common scenario is that Segway tour company A wants to be able to automatically confirm a reservation for a tour while Segway tour company B want all reservations to be pending so they can check availability first before confirming the tour.
If you are the owner of a tour business, it can be quite a challenge to find an adequate system to handle online bookings. A solution could be to design a custom developed system. It definitely is a great way to get exactly what you want, the way you want it. However, this would most likely involve hiring an IT professional to create and setup this solution. What most owners don’t realize when they start a project like this is that creating a software from the ground up requires knowledge, business understanding , many hours of development and testing, and finally a large price tag when the work is complete. That is why custom developed booking systems are largely used by companies with a significant power of investment. While some tour businesses consider it is a reasonable risk to take, the majority cannot afford it. These businesses continue using email and phone as their means of taking reservations and pen and paper to manage availability.
Also, development and testing is a long process. First, you need to have a precise idea of how you want to structure your project, and be able to relay your idea to a developer. The hope is that a good developer will be able to understand your needs. After that, the development and testing can take a lot of time, resources, and money. In addition, you will likely be highly involved in the day to day development and testing since you want to ensure that your vision of the system is being clearly established. Oftentimes, one person’s idea might not be the same as another person’s idea. Meanwhile you’re still using pen and paper to handle your reservations.
When the development process ends, it is natural to think that the hardest part is done. Now, what will happen if you want to make an enhancement to the system? How will you store and manage your customers’ data? Will you be able to contact your developer any time if there is a bug? What will happen if he is on holiday when you need him? How much downtime can you afford? Those are the most important questions you must ask yourself before you get involved into a booking system development project. If you are unable to get a satisfactory answer to these questions, then you should reconsider having a custom developed online booking system for your business.
Should you just keep handling reservations with pen and paper? Not necessarily.
WebReserv offers an online booking system that is a viable solution for the tour industry.
“WebReserv is designed to make it easy and affordable for tour operators and other businesses to quickly set up an online booking and ticketing system. We came up with the idea for WebReserv when we realized that were plenty of booking systems for hotels and bed & breakfasts, but tour operators, on the other hand, weren’t able to find an easy-to-use and affordable booking system to allow their customers to book their tours and rentals online.” says Martin Israelsen, founder of WebReserv.
WebReserv has been working with the tour industry since 2006. The system allows businesses to embed a booking calendar directly into their webpage. It handles reservations and payments automatically 24/7. In the recent years, Segway tours, boat tours, bicycle tours, guided tours, and other small to medium businesses of the tour industry have been successfully using the system. One of the keys to this success is the easy set up and use of the WebReserv system. You don’t have to be an IT professional to set up the system. The configuration process is straightforward including product/inventory setup, price list, pictures, descriptions, and reservation rules. You are able to get the system up and running in few hours. In addition, WebReserv takes the responsibility of all your data and you receive top notch customer service and support. There is nothing to design, develop, or install. It is already done for you.
Professional accounts are available for 20€ - 40€ per month which is what makes the system quite attractive for small and medium businesses.
WebReserv offers the most flexible and easy-to-use cloud-based booking system available today. If you would like more information about WebReserv, please go to http://www.webreserv.eu for Europe. In US, please go to http://www.webreserv.com.
Tags: Tours, segway, boat, bicycle, walking, tour, webreserv, online booking, booking, system, software, engine