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21 Tourism and Travel Business Ideas

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Written by: Carolyn Young

Carolyn Young is a business writer who focuses on entrepreneurial concepts and the business formation. She has over 25 years of experience in business roles, and has authored several entrepreneurship textbooks.

Edited by: David Lepeska

David has been writing and learning about business, finance and globalization for a quarter-century, starting with a small New York consulting firm in the 1990s.

Published on July 21, 2022 Updated on October 2, 2023

21 Tourism and Travel Business Ideas

With the pandemic winding down, countless Americans are getting back to traveling! That means now is a great time to establish a travel-related business and build a steady income. The tourism industry is massive and diverse, offering many opportunities for sharp entrepreneurs. 

You could start a travel agency, a campground, a hotel, or a concierge service . Explore many more excellent tourism business ideas in our list below.

1. Travel Agency

How to start a travel agency business

If you love to travel and are always planning your next trip, starting a travel agency might be the perfect career choice. It’s a great way to share your love and knowledge of travel, and it can be very lucrative. US travel agencies are rebounding strongly from the pandemic and expect a 38% increase in revenue in 2022. Looking ahead, the market is expected to grow steadily through 2026.  

If you have the resources, starting a travel agency business can be a breeze. But first, you need to identify your target market. Will you focus on domestic or international travel? A lot of Americans go on short trips for vacation or business purposes, providing an opportunity for travel agencies to earn money. Arranging tours and outings for international visitors is also possible now that the US has eased travel requirements. Once you find your niche and draw up a business plan, you should work on establishing your brand and promoting it to find clients.

2. Nightclub

How to Start a Nightclub

Do you enjoy late nights on the town? If so, starting a club might be right up your alley. Nightclubs and music venues are part of the US bars and nightlife industry, which suffered a sharp decline during the pandemic. But now that people are hitting the town again the market is set to grow 14% and exceed $28 billion in revenue in 2022. 

Before you open your club, it’s important to know that the industry is heavily regulated, especially when it comes to alcohol consumption. You’ll need to meet both state and local regulations and licensing requirements so it’s best to inquire about the details from your local authorities first. Next, it’s a good idea to research the market and find out what other clubs in your area are offering. You’ll have to innovate and come up with a unique selling proposition and a creative marketing plan for your club to attract customers. With these in place, your club can be very profitable.

3. Photography

How to start a photography business

Are you an amateur photographer who loves snapping great images? Photography in the US is an $11 billion industry expected to see steady growth in the coming years, so now would be a great time to stretch your entrepreneurial wings and give it a shot. You could focus on travel photography, if that’s your passion, and give the world beautiful photos while also seeing the world. 

Assuming you already have a professional-level camera, you’ll just need some great editing software and to build a website showing off your portfolio and listing your prices and services. With a bit of talent and determination, you could be snapping your way to success in no time!

How to start a airbnb business

If you’ve stayed in an Airbnb, you probably know how sweet it is to have a home away from home! This is why the homestay segment of the hotel and lodgings market has seen explosive growth in recent years, with Airbnb leading the way. Renting out your home as an Airbnb is an easy and flexible way to earn income, whether you’re looking for a little extra money or to build a serious business. 

The first step is to make sure your home or apartment can be rented out for short-term stays. In many areas today, there are laws either banning Airbnb rentals or limiting them to a certain share of local units. If your home clears that hurdle and is in an area with some tourist appeal, you’re already halfway there. If your apartment fails to meet one of these requirements, you might want to look into purchasing a home or apartment in an appealing destination, which you could then develop into a successful Airbnb. 

Whichever approach you choose, the most important step is delivering fantastic service to your guests. If you can achieve Superhost status, you’ll be well on your way to Airbnb success.

5. Translation Business

How to start a translation agency

Demand for translation services is expected to grow as more companies seek to capture or increase their share of the global market. In the US, more than 10,000 new jobs for interpreters and translators are expected each year through 2030. Translation businesses help translate documents, localize travel and city guide websites, and interpret speech, including sign language. If you’re thinking of starting a translation business, you’re not alone. But if you have the skills and the right talents and tools, you could edge out the competition. 

In this internet age, finding translators who can work remotely across the globe has become easier. Promoting diversity among your staff could also be good for your business because you’ll be able to offer translation services for more languages. Do the paperwork to register your business, keep yourself updated with the latest technologies, promote your services, and you should be able to gain traction as soon as you start operating.

6. Bed and Breakfast

How to start a bed and breakfast business

Many Americans still prefer to stay in a traditional B&B for the unique hospitality, homemade food, and fascinating local insights. The US bed and breakfast market was worth $1.7 billion in 2021 and expected to rebound strongly from the pandemic after the lifting of travel restrictions. If you’ve been thinking of opening your own bed and breakfast, now is a great time.

When starting a B&B, it’s important to be aware of the latest industry trends. For example, many guests prefer a facility that offers live entertainment or is located close to tourist attractions. It’s also to your advantage to research the market and see what features and services are being offered by the competition. Be innovative in coming up with ways to differentiate your business. Running a bed and breakfast is not easy, but it can be very rewarding if you play your cards right. 

7. Glamping

How to start a glamping business

A decade ago nobody had heard the word glamping, which is short for “glamorous camping”. Today it’s a nearly $3 billion global industry and among the fastest-growing segments of the travel and hospitality market, expected to more than double by 2030. If you have a bit of land in an appealing location, or have the funds to purchase such a plot, you could start your own glamping business and make a good living offering luxury experiences to discerning travelers.

There will be some serious work involved. In addition to acquiring the property, you’ll need to outfit it with all the bells and whistles — from tents and teepees to high-end beds, furniture, lighting and air-conditioning and heating units. If your location is on the water, you could boost your revenue by also offering sailboats, canoes, kayaks, and more. But before you get started, this is a new and fast-evolving industry, so it’s best to take the time to research the market and learn the latest trends before diving in.

To attract customers, your glampground needs to be among the most appealing in your area.

8. Jet Ski Rental

How to start a jet ski rental business

Do you like having fun out on the water? Well, so does everybody else! That’s why starting a jet ski business is almost always a great idea. The global personal watercraft market is worth $1.5 trillion and expected to expand an impressive 50% by 2027. Right now is a great time to start a jet ski business, bring good times to your community and ride the market expansion to great success. 

Getting there will require a significant investment. You’ll need to spend about $25,000 to get your first few jet skis, plus a rental facility on the water and permits and licensing fees. Of course, you’ll also need to live near an appealing body of water, preferably one that’s enjoyable for more than a few months of the year. Finally, you will want to get good insurance, because jet skis are as dangerous as they are fun.

Once that’s all settled, just start advertising on local outlets and events, posting on relevant social media groups and online vacation platforms. You’ll have your first few customers in no time, and soon be cruising toward success.

9. Campground

How to start a campground

Do you love the outdoors? If so, setting up a campground could be the perfect way to start your entrepreneurial journey. Camping is one of the most popular US pastimes in the US. Despite the pandemic, the number of US campers increased to 48 million in 2020, as outdoor activities were deemed safer than indoor recreation. 

Your biggest challenge in starting a campground is likely to be finding a suitable location. The most visited campgrounds in the US are in state parks, near bodies of water, surrounded by wilderness, or in the mountains. Once you find an ideal campsite, you’ll need to comply with licensing, zoning, and other legal requirements. Before you launch your business, it’s wise to research the market and find out what other campgrounds are offering. With careful planning and a creative marketing strategy, your campground can give competing sites a run for their money.

10. Pet Sitting

How to start a pet sitting business

You’d probably never guess that pet sitting is a $2.6 billion industry, but it is indeed. People love their pets, and will spend whatever it takes to ensure they’re taken care of when they are away. The pet sitting market is projected to see impressive growth through 2027, so if you’re an animal lover, now is the perfect time to start your own pet sitting business and ride that wave to serious profits. 

The first step is to decide which type of pets you’ll care for. Do you have more experience with dogs or cats? Are you OK with snakes? Pigs? Once you’ve got that nailed down, you’ll just need to buy some pet toys and supplies and offer your services on a gigs site like TaskRabbit. It’s a good idea to reach out to friends, family and work-related contacts and acquaintances. If you’re able to generate an initial client or two from your own personal network, and provide them with great service, you’ll have a strong reference to promote your services and start building a successful business.

11. Spa Salon

How to start a spa business

Countless travelers love to relax with a day at the spa, which is why this is a growing $17 billion US industry. If you’re a massage therapist or esthetician, you could open a beauty salon, nail spa, luxury spa, massage studio, or even a mobile spa, and make people feel better while making a good living.  

You will likely need to get licensed, which can take some doing, and deliver excellent services to compete in an increasingly competitive and saturated market. Another crucial aspect will be location — your spa should be somewhere with steady traffic. Or you could go the mobile spa route and make house calls, bringing your massage and therapeutic services to your clients. This is more convenient for them, which means you can charge a higher rate, despite having lower overhead.

There are many elements to consider for your spa business, but what is not in doubt are your chances of success if you’re determined and can deliver healing services.

12. Scooter Rental

How to Start a Scooter Rental Business

With gas prices going up, more and more Americans are turning to cheaper, more eco-friendly options for their commute and for seeing the city. Scooters cost less than cars and run on electricity. Over the past decade, Americans took a third of a billion trips on shared bikes and scooters. That’s a huge number, and it’s expected to increase sharply in the next few years. Considering this, a scooter rental business is a smart choice.

But first, it’s important to understand that scooters are used primarily as a transport option for short distances. Setting up this kind of business requires a huge upfront investment because you might have to purchase some scooters, unless you can lease them. You’ve need to make sure you have all the necessary permits and insurance in place before opening.

Once you have everything you need, it’s a good idea to work on a marketing plan. You can use social media, print ads, and word-of-mouth to get the word out about your new venture.

13. Party Bus

How to start a party bus business

Ready to party? As the pandemic recedes, everybody’s getting back out there to have a good time. For a lot of people that means renting out a party bus and dancing and drinking the night away while cruising down the streets. Party buses are part of the $8 billion US limousine industry, and expect strong growth as people schedule long-delayed parties, gatherings, and nights on the town.

Starting your own party bus business will require considerable investment. The major cost will be, of course, the bus itself. Hopefully you’ll be able to find a reliable one at a reasonable price and then deck it out with all the trimmings, from a bar and disco ball to a DJ booth and more. Once you’ve done some marketing and gotten the word out you’ll be able to charge as much as $700 per night, so it shouldn’t take too long before you see a major return on your investment. 

Just be sure to get all your licenses, permits and insurance — the last thing you want is for the party to get parked on the curb.

14. Car Rental

How to start a car rental business

As people book long-delayed holidays in the wake of the pandemic, car rentals are booming, with global revenues expected to double by 2027. With some hard work and determination, you could start your own car rental business and provide travelers the transport they need while grabbing your share of a growing $50 billion US market.  

Keep in mind that this is a competitive industry, which means you’ll need to find ways to stand out, such as with deep discounts or a unique selection of cars. Speaking of which, you’ll also need to lay out a sizable investment to get your initial fleet of four to five cars. Finally, it’s crucial that you meet all the licensing and insurance requirements or your business could face severe fines, or worse.

But if you’re able to clear these hurdles, there’s a good chance your car rental business will soon be cruising down easy street.

15. Boat Rental

How to start a boat rental business

Who doesn’t love a day out on the water? There are so many things to do. from skiing and tubing to cruising, socializing, swimming and just taking in the sun. That’s why boat rentals are a $5 billion US industry expected to see smooth sailing and steady growth in the years ahead. If you like spending time outdoors, you could start your own boat rental business and help people enjoy their time off while making a good living. 

There are several possible constraints. For one, you should live near a sizable body of water, and find an available access point or marina to base your operations. Second, you’ll likely need to accept the seasonal nature of this line of work, which in most areas of the US will only bring in revenue for 6-7 months of the year. Finally, getting started will require a significant investment, as appealing, rentable boats do not come cheap. 

But if you’re OK with all this, and able to acquire the necessary permits and insurance, once you start putting boaters on the water you’ll be cruising straight toward success.

16. Bike Rental

How to start a bike rental business

As travel regains steam and more workers return to the office, demand for bike rental for last-mile connections is sure to increase. If you’re thinking of starting your own business, a bike-share outfit or bike rental shop could be a great option. The US bike rental industry, valued at nearly $800 million, is projected to grow in the next five years amid a bike-share boom, driven in part by environmental concerns.

There are a few things you need to consider before starting a bike rental business. Is there a market for bike rental in your area? What kind of bikes should you offer? How many bikes should you start with? You will find the answers to these questions as you research the market. It is also important to comply with all the legal and regulatory requirements and to come up with a good marketing plan. One option is to place bike docks near subway stations and major bus stops.

17. RV Rental

How to Start an RV Rental Business

RVing , or traveling in a recreational vehicle, is a popular way of exploring the US with family and friends. It’s showing no signs of slowing as more than 70 million Americans are expected to go on road trips in an RV they rent, own, or borrow, according to the RV Industry Association. You could start an RV rental business and tap into this exciting travel market.

You can either invest in a fleet of RVs, which would require a hefty investment, or you can just list your RV on an online marketplace like Outdoorsy. Before setting your rates, it’s a good idea to scope out the market and find out what your competitors are charging. You’ll have to factor in insurance and other costs in order to make a profit.

Finally, it’s important to keep your RVs well-maintained to attract customers, most of whom prefer to rent out new units. With all this in place, your RV rental business will making good money in no time.

18. Kayak Rental

How to start a canoe and kayak rental business

As more people explore the outdoors in a post-pandemic world, a kayak business makes sense. It’s an eco-friendly way to help travelers enjoy their time off while getting some exercise and enjoying the great outdoors. Sales of kayaks and accessories are expected to see steady growth and reach nearly $300 million by 2027. So, why not start a kayak rental business now?

Aside from offering kayaks for rent, you could also also offer apparel and helmets, storage bags, seats, life jackets, and safety gear. Selecting the location of your shop is important. It will have to be near the coast, a river or a lake, and with steady foot traffic. You’ll need a substantial investment to set up your shop. Finally, it’s a good idea to promote your business and let people know about your offerings.

19. Taxi Business

How to start a taxi business

Considering all the ride-sharing apps out there, you might be surprised to learn that old-school taxis are not only surviving, but doing quite well. The US taxi and limo market is worth more than $66 billion and expected to see steady growth in the coming years. If you enjoy driving and meeting new people, starting a taxi business might be the right move for you. 

Getting started will require some real effort and investment. You’ll need to buy a reliable car, if you don’t already have one, plus reliable insurance and all the necessary permits. In some cities the car hire license can be a major expense, for instance a New York City taxi medallion costs $80,000. In other places, like $300 in Cleveland, not so much. Once you’ve all set up, it’s a good idea to build a website so people can find you, and you might want to offer an app as well, as most car services nowadays offer on-demand ordering. 

Finally, get creative with your marketing to stand out in a competitive market, provide excellent service and steady driving to your first few clients, and the good reviews and revenues should start pouring in.

20. RV Park

How to Start an RV Park

The wanderlust spirit and a rise in road-tripping have amplified the allure of RV travel. Capitalizing on this trend, starting an RV park presents a golden opportunity in the travel business sector. Such parks cater to a growing demographic of explorers seeking the comfort of their RVs while embracing the freedom of the open road. With the right amenities and a strategic location, an RV park can be a haven for both short-term travelers and long-term nomads.

Location is paramount, ideally near popular tourist spots or natural attractions. Additionally, ensuring modern facilities, security, and possibly offering unique experiences or events can differentiate your park from competitors. As travel patterns evolve, an RV park can offer travelers a blend of adventure and convenience, making it a profitable and sustainable business venture.

21. Tour Operator

How to Start a Tour Operator Business

Tour operator business thrives on curating unique experiences, offering tailored packages, and ensuring travelers get the best out of their journeys. Unlike general travel agencies, tour operators control and manage the specifics of the trip, right from itinerary planning to the on-ground execution. This means creating partnerships with local businesses, ensuring safety standards, and offering a seamless travel experience to clients.

In today’s digital age, a tour operator’s success doesn’t just hinge on local networking, but also on a strong online presence. Reviews, testimonials, and digital marketing strategies play a pivotal role in attracting potential customers. Whether one chooses to cater to adventure seekers, history enthusiasts, or luxury travelers, the key is to differentiate, maintain high service standards, and keep evolving with the dynamic travel industry.

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Set-jetting, Forest Bathing, and Hush Trips: 20 Innovative Tourism Business Ideas and Trends for 2023

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In This Article: Trends to Inspire Your Tours and Activities

Top tourism trends of 2023.

It’s that time of year again to ask ourselves, “What’s new, cool, and innovative in tourism?”. We’ve compiled a list of new, innovative tourism business ideas for 2023 so you can find your niche. 

The travel and tourism industry is in a state of constant flux, never more so than in the last few years. Every change and new trend brings with it an opportunity for tour operators to deliver what their customers old and new want—as well as add new tours and experiences they don’t yet even know they want. 

  As countries began to ease restrictions, 2022 saw the travel industry rebound from 2021 and 2020. Despite new global challenges appearing during 2022 and continuing into 2023, including the Russian-Ukraine war and the global economic fallout, the most important trend of all is that people still want to travel and are even budgeting for more travel.

As one travel professional interviewed for TravelAge West ’s article on travel trends put it: “It’s almost like travel went from a discretionary spend to an essential spend for a lot of people.”

Despite all that is still happening in the world, around the industry there is a continued air of optimism in 2023. Travel Pulse noted that “ while 2022 was the year of recovery [recovered almost 60 percent of its pre-pandemic levels], 2023 is poised to be the year of reinvention.” Booking.com research prompted them to label 2023 as a year of “creative imagination of travel.” Skyscanner’s Travel Trends report concluded that “Post-COVID restrictions, travellers continue to prioritize adventures abroad and embrace travel freedoms with relish.”

Here are some of the latest major trends and innovative tourism business ideas to keep an eye on and potentially incorporate into the tours and travel experiences you offer. We’ll also highlight a few of the more unusual and niche trends that could take off during 2023 or in the longer term, or just inspire some “out of the box” thinking when looking at your own products and services.

1. Transformational trips

Group of people on a lake practicing yoga during sunset

A buzz phrase you’ll hear a lot in 2023 is “transformational retreat.” This refers to travel experiences that cater to people who want to undergo a significant personal or spiritual transformation. Retreats and activities include meditation, yoga, therapy, workshops, and other experiential practices. Most promote self-awareness, personal growth, and positive change, typically taking place in a secluded and peaceful setting and led by experienced facilitators or coaches. 

Booking.com’s Travel Predictions 2023 report called these trips “peace and pleasure pilgrimages.” The report found that 42 percent of travelers want to focus on their mental and physical health, including retreats to smooth the processes of pregnancy and menopause.” A large proportion of travelers are interested in meditation or mindfulness retreats. Some retreats even take the word “trip” literally, catering to people interested in the potential therapeutic benefits of the controlled and supervised use of “magic mushrooms” and other psychedelics.

Innovative tourism business ideas:

  • Beckley Retreats : Science-backed psychedelic retreats
  • Explorer X : A tour operator dedicated to transformational trips
  • Organic Tuscany : Organic cooking retreats in Tuscany.

2. Forest bathing and digital detoxing

Group hiking through the forest

Not everyone is looking for a transformational outcome from their vacation; many simply want to unwind and enjoy some quality “me time.” Wellness vacations have been a growing tourism business trend for some time, with demand accelerated by the pandemic. Tours that offer people the chance to pamper themselves and generally recalibrate are likely to be extremely popular for the foreseeable future.

Two specific innovative tourism business ideas that look likely to be especially popular in 2023 are “forest bathing” and “digital detoxing.” 

Forest bathing, or Shinrin-yoku , originated in Japan. It involves becoming immersed in nature to enhance physical, mental, and emotional well-being. It can be as simple as going for a long walk through a forest, or sitting by a lake and taking in the sights, sounds, and smells of the natural surroundings. Research has shown that forest bathing can reduce stress and anxiety, improve mood, and even boost the immune system and reduce blood pressure and heart rate. After the last few years we’ve all been through, it’s no wonder it’s proving popular with travelers.

In a similar vein, many people want to unplug and undertake a “digital detox” where you never need to ask for the Wi-Fi password because there is no Wi-Fi. They could be seeking respite from “doom scrolling” through social media and news feeds on their digital devices, or they just want a break from the glowing screens so prevalent in their day-to-day. Trips that encourage travelers to leave their devices at home will be popular, whether to wellness retreats that ban or discourage digital devices or an out-of-the-way destination that makes electronic communication extremely difficult.

  • Gaia Wellness Retreat : Digital detox packages in a forest setting
  • Sheldon Chalet : A luxury chalet in Alaska
  • Talaysay Tours : A corporate tour to “connect to the forest with all your senses”

3. Off-grid and “survival” travel

Hikers high fiving each other

One way to both commune with nature and unplug from your digital life is to go where no signal can reach you. Booking.com’s report found that 55 percent of travelers want to spend their vacations off-grid, resulting in an increase in tour operators offering trips to places where you can’t easily be reached. This could be a lodge in a remote part of a country or backcountry camping.

A related trend is the opposite of “glamping.” A growing number of travelers want to challenge themselves to survive in inhospitable conditions (you know… just in case), while learning new skills at the same time. In Booking.com’s report, 58 percent of travelers want to learn survival skills on holiday—everything from fire lighting and food foraging to the more full-on prepping for societal breakdown. Zombie survival camp anyone?

  • Off Grid Travel : Company offering a variety of off grid accommodation around Europe
  • Docastaway : Offers a desert island castaway experience
  • Black Tomato : Offers a “Get Lost service” for people who want to challenge themselves

4. Hush trips, workcations, and micro-cations

Man taking phone calls while in a pool

Shhh, don’t tell anyone (especially your co-workers and definitely not your boss), but “hush trips” are on the rise. A hush trip is a secret trip taken by an employee without their employer’s knowledge. It’s all linked to the huge rise in remote working. People who work in a different city and country from their employer can theoretically do their work from anywhere. However, a hush trip can be slightly different from a “workcation,” another popular trend in the age of remote working, when an employer’s permission is often sought. On a hush trip, no actual work might be done; the employee wants a real holiday to escape the hustle and bustle of daily life and recharge, but they may not use their vacation days to take it. They complete their work and take a day or two off without anyone knowing (they hope,) perhaps logging in now and then for appearances’ sake. Or, they may travel somewhere and continue to work, while enjoying their downtime in a new place, again without telling anyone. 

Many hush trips are “micro-cations,” short trips often taken close to home, often at the last minute. The micro-cation trend has continued to grow for the last few years, as people look for quick, convenient, and often budget-friendly getaways that don’t require a lot of planning. 

When you combine the acceptance of remote working among many more employers with a large number of people who left the office behind and didn’t miss it for a second, you have an opportunity to create workcation and hush trip experiences for digital nomads and remote workers.  

  • Selina : Opportunities for people to stay, travel, and work in interesting places around the world
  • Ethos Remote Habitat : Remote working retreats
  • Work from Hyatt : Packages for people who want to work from a Hyatt hotel

5. Traveling for “bleisure”

The travel industry does love a good old word mash-up to describe the latest trend. Hot on the heels of workcations, we have the related trend of “bleisure”—a name coined to describe the trend of business travelers tacking on some leisure time to the end of business trips. Where a workcation is often a longer trip designed around work, the growth of bleisure trips reflects the fact that as business travel bounces back, people still want as much vacation time as they can get. 

Although the economy could affect business travel in 2023 as companies cut costs, it’s worth keeping an eye on the business and conference market to target business travelers who want to carve out some vacation time to explore a destination on their own time.

6. Set-jetting

Hobbit house in New Zealand

If you’ve ever wanted to visit the set of your favorite movie or TV show, you’re not alone. A top travel trend for 2023 is “set-jetting,” when travelers visit destinations primarily because they were featured in a popular movie, TV show, or book. According to research, 39 percent of travelers have booked trips to places featured on shows or movies ( Expedia ). While people have long been drawn to iconic movie locations, perhaps the earliest example of mass set-jetting was New Zealand’s tourism industry getting a huge boost after the country played a leading role in the “Lord of The Rings” movies. Fans of the “Outlander” books and TV series have also been making pilgrimages to Scotland to see the country that provides the backdrop for their favorite show.

People don’t just want to visit the actual physical set and filming location, but also just the cities or countries featured in a particular production. Keep an eye out for popular shows where the location is as much the star of the show as the actors, such as “The Crown” (England,) “Emily in Paris” (Paris,) and “The White Lotus” (Sicily), as they could trigger a surge in demand for particular locations and experiences relating to the shows, such as a themed tour.

  • The Potter Trail : Harry Potter-themed walking tours in Edinburgh, Scotland
  • Red Carpet Tours : “Lord of the Rings” set-jetting specialists
  • On Location Tours : TV- and movie-themed tours in New York, Chicago, and Boston

7. Sustainable tourism and electric travel

“Ecotourism” has been on the rise for several years, and continues to be popular. According to Booking.com’s Sustainable Travel Report 2022 , 81 percent of global travelers say sustainable travel is important to them, and 50 percent are influenced by news reports on climate change when it comes to booking choices. 

So-called “ecotours” let tourists enjoy a vacation while also learning about environmental and sustainability issues in a particular location. Some enable people to do something tangible to help, such as volunteering to plant trees or help to restore habitats. Many travelers these days also seek out “small footprint” or socially-responsible travel. This may not be an eco-tour as such; it could just mean they favor tour companies that take steps to minimize the impact of their tours or incorporate a social responsibility element. 

Many travelers also want to stay in planet-friendly accommodations. According to Booking.com’s report, 57 percent of travelers prefer accommodation with sustainable certification. Another related trend to watch is road trips or other travel using electric vehicles. Some car rental companies are adding electric cars to their fleets, and VW has even built an electric version of their classic camper van, the ID Buzz. Within cities, travelers might want to do tours on electric bikes and focus on other more sustainable modes of transport rather than the traditional taxi and car hire approach. In the not too distant future, electric air travel may even become the norm thanks to companies like Eviation that are developing electric planes.

  • Jumbari Family Safaris : Eco-safaris in Africa.
  • OneSeed Expeditions : Responsible adventure travel around the world.
  • EV Travel : Sustainable adventures in Iceland

8. Indigenous experiences

Indigenous Touri

Countries around the world are making an increased effort to reverse past wrongs when it comes to treatment of Indigenous peoples, while also empowering Indigenous communities to take a lead in areas like travel and tourism. Canada is one nation going through a period of reconciliation as it faces up to and attempts to make amends for its colonial past. This has resulted in a huge growth in Indigenous-led travel companies, experiences, resorts, and accommodation options. 

Australia and New Zealand are also seeing a growth in opportunities for travelers to support and learn about Indigenous communities, histories, and cultures.

If you are an Indigenous entrepreneur, you may find great opportunities available with an increase in programs that support Indigenous tourism in these countries. For others, there may be opportunities for partnering with or supporting Indigenous-led businesses and organizations in your region.

  • Worn Gundidj at Tower Hill : Tours offering the chance to connect with Australian aboriginal culture
  • Road Scholar : Offers a New Zealand cultural experience, learning from local experts  
  • Haida Style Expeditions : Cultural trips on Haida Gwaii on Canada’s west coast

9. Budget-friendly travel

The economic upheaval we saw through 2022 looks set to continue through 2023. Inflation and cost of living rises mean while the desire to travel is still strong, many travelers will still have at least one eye on their budget. This could mean more interest from thrifty travelers in camping, self-catering, and all-inclusive holidays. Activities and vacations that involve renting rather than buying equipment could also be more popular. 

Packlist : Camping gear rentals in Canada

Lazy Days : Camper van rentals in Ireland

Tampa Bay eBikes : eBike rentals on the Gulf Coast

10. Luxury cruises and upscale all-inclusive

Friends jumping off a boat into tropical waters

While there will be a lot of budget-conscious travelers in 2023, there are also plenty of opportunities in the luxury travel market, including two types of travel luxury travelers may previously have turned their noses up at—all-inclusive trips and cruises. The luxury cruise market, as well as the cruise market in general, is set to rebound in style. CN Traveller reported on “ a new breed of luxury yachts from the world’s leading hotel brands,” including  The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection , which boasts  “ the most sophisticated and expensive civilian ship ever built in Spain.” Cruise companies like Scenic and Emerald Cruises are expecting high demand for spots on their luxury ships . If you are on a luxury cruise route, catering your activities to a luxury-seeking clientele, with prices to match, might be worth considering.

Cruises tend to be all-inclusive as standard, but there is also a growth in upscale all-inclusive vacations in general. These experiences offer the best of everything—food, accommodation, and experiences, all for a set (and premium) price. Ikos Resorts will open a new five-star all-inclusive resort in Mallorca in June 2023.

  • Ama Waterways : Luxury river cruises in Europe
  • Windstar Cruises : Luxury small-ship cruises
  • Conrad Maldives Luxury Island : All-inclusive resort in the Maldives

11. Train travel

Passenger train passing through field overlooking mountains

From the “Flying Scotsman” to the “Orient Express,” there are few more romantic ways to travel than by train. However, train travel is also increasingly overlapping with other trends in our list, as it becomes more popular as a way to travel more sustainably by reducing car and air travel, travel slower (unless we’re talking train travel in Japan) and for longer, and travel to more countries on the same trip.

Train travel can also offer scenic views, comfortable travel with spacious seats, sleeping accommodation for longer or overnight trips, and the opportunity to socialize with other travelers, and convenient access to city centres. Piggy-backing the trend toward more immersive travel experiences, train travel also lets travelers see more of a country while mixing with locals. Many countries and rail companies, especially in Europe, offer passes that let travelers visit multiple places in one trip without leaving the ground. If your tours and activities are near a popular rail route, look for ways to capitalize on the increase in train travel by catering to people who may want something to do for a day or two before they move on.

  • Byway : Lets travelers build their own train vacation
  • Intrepid Travel : Offers a range of “Train it” itineraries
  • Glacier Express : Cultural and foodie train trips in Switzerland

12. Glamping

During the pandemic, with international travel off the menu for most people,  RV rentals spiked dramatically . Road trips made it easier for tourists to physically distance from other travelers in a post-COVID world, and “glampervan” vacations became popular. Glamping is still on the rise in 2023; the glamping market is expected to reach US$4.1bn in 2028 ( Stratview Research ). Glamping lets people enjoy sleeping and living in the great outdoors, but with a step-up in comfort from traditional camping. Glampers can stay in everything from classic Airstream trailers to yurts and all manner of other non-tent accommodation.

travel and tourism business ideas

  • Woods on Pender : Stay in a classic Airstream trailer on an island.
  • Huttopia : Glamping getaways in Canada and the US 
  • Under Canvas : Upscale camping in Moab, the Grand Canyon, and other spectacular locations 

13. Go solo or go social

solo traveler in desert

While “travel bubbles” are no longer required for COVID-related reasons, group travel continues to rise in popularity. Hotels and tour companies increasingly cater to family groups or groups of friends who want to take a memorable trip together. For example, Atticus Hotel  in Oregon’s  Bunkhouse room for groups . It’s not just families making up for lost time with “reunion” or “celebration” travel. Tour operator Contiki noticed an upswing in demand for what they call “social travel” from groups of Gen Z-ers who want to get together on a trip to celebrate birthdays, graduations, and other milestones: “Gen Z want to make up for lost time spent together and get travelling.” Another type of social travel piggybacks the rise of “travel influencers” on social media platforms like Instagram. Some popular influencers are pivoting to provide the opportunity for their followers to literally follow them on a trip. People can go on a trip or do an activity with their favorite influencer and a group of fellow followers.

Of course, not everyone has a posse to travel with or wants to travel with others. Solo travel continues to be very popular and has moved from a niche to a mainstream market. A Skyscanner report found that 40 percent wanted to travel solo for mental health wellness reasons, while singles and divorcees ranked highly for being ready to take a solo trip. The report concludes: “There is no longer any stigma attached to taking a trip on your own, and many tour companies cater specifically to this market.”

  • Flash Pack : Small group adventures for solo travelers in their 30s and 40s.
  • On the Go Tours : Pre-designed tours for private groups.
  • My Life’s a Travel Movie : Join social media influencer Alyssa Ramos on a trip

Watch this space: Unusual and niche  tourism trends to track in 2023

14. flat pack hotels.

In a move that reflects the growing interest in responsible and sustainable travel, hotel company Habitas have opened a number of flat-pack hotels around the world for “like-minded people seeking connection, inspiration and a better future together.”

15. Crypto trips

A number of tour operators and travel companies now offer travelers the ability to pay with cryptocurrency. Some examples include Borrow a Boat , Soneva Resorts  and Get Your Guide . 

16. Dark tourism

There has been a rise in so-called “dark tourism,” when people travel to places or sites associated with disasters and darker historical events. Famous examples include Pearl Harbour, Alcatraz, and Hiroshima. If this is the first you’ve heard of this term, it can sound a bit ghoulish. However, travelers who explore these sites generally do so to pay their respects or learn more about important historical events that hopefully will never be repeated.

17. Sober travel

Sober travel has been around for a while, but it mostly catered to people in recovery. In 2023, sober travel is a subset of wellness travel. Travel companies like Travel Sober and  Sober Outside have pivoted to target anyone who wants a sober vacation.

18. Virtual travel

Forbes Magazine thinks 2023 will be “the year that tourism in the metaverse takes off.” Travel companies can use VR to give potential customers a taste of the experience they can expect from a tour or location. VR can be accessible through web browsers or people can enjoy a much more immersive experience using VR headsets.

19. Nostalgic travel

Booking.com’s 2023 travel predictions found that 88 percent of travelers want to go on a “nostalgic getaway,” whether that’s theme parks we went to as kids, nostalgic movie locations, or other trips down memory lane. 

20. Sleep tourism

Everyone likes a good night’s sleep, especially on vacation, and the travel is waking up to the opportunities offered by a rise in “sleep tourism.” The Park Hyatt New York now offers a stay in their  One Bedroom Sleep Suite by Bryte , while Swedish bed brand Hastens opened a branded Sleep Spa . Good night, sleep well.  

How to take advantage of innovative tourism business ideas

Illustrations of ideas being locked away

The key to taking advantage of these innovative tourism business ideas and other tourism industry trends is to always be thinking of your next profitable business opportunity. Here are a few ways to keep on top of what’s new and interesting in the travel business:

Maintain an ideas file

Include those “out there” trends that seem absurd the first time you hear them. Think about some recent innovations that would have been dismissed with a laugh not that long ago: Self-driving cars, passenger space travel, drone deliveries… Even that Holy Grail of futuristic inventions, the personal jetpack, is getting closer to reality. All but the most outlandish trends are worth tracking in case there’s a germ of an idea for a new business opportunity in there.

Listen to your audienc e

Hang out in online travel discussion forums, on social media, and in other places where travelers gather to swap notes and ideas or express needs and dreams. You might uncover a new business idea no-one else has come across yet.

Follow your competitors

Monitor what your direct competitors and others in the tourism business are up to. Subscribe to every industry newsletter you can, including those of your competitors, to keep up with emerging trends and help with your business idea generation.

Solicit customer feedback

Be proactive in asking your customers for feedback. Don’t just ask them what they liked and didn’t like about their experience with your company; ask them if there’s anything they would like to do that they currently can’t. 

Invest in the right booking system

It goes without saying that every tour operator should offer online booking and take a mobile-first approach. Not doing both of those things makes taking advantage of the above trends very difficult. The customer experience starts the moment they enter your website. Online booking enables them to easily browse, book, and pay for tours anytime and from is anywhere. Learn more about how Rezgo booking software is tailor-made for adventure companies.

At Rezgo, we always have our ear to the ground when it comes to the latest tourism trends and business opportunities. The Rezgo booking system is a comprehensive platform that enables you to become a more profitable business. It can also help you future-proof your business so you can develop and grow as the tourism industry changes.  Book a demo today or  sign up for free and start using Rezgo

Wondering what to read next? Here are our suggestions: The Future of Tourism: 10 Things Tour Companies Need To Prepare For in 2022 A Guide to Branding in the Travel and Tourism Industry Low Season Strategies to Prime Your Tour and Activity Company for Success

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Written By | Rob Mathison

Rob Mathison is a Vancouver-based freelance writer focusing on tech, travel, digital marketing, and education. He is a co-author of The Complete Resident’s Guide to Vancouver.

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40 Travel and Hospitality Business Ideas

From providing lodging to leading guided tours, the opportunities for success in the travel and hospitality industry are numerous. Your potential tourism business can take many different forms as the commodities of traveling are multifaceted and broad.

Whatever your motivation for wanting to begin your entrepreneurial journey T ravel business ideas and Hospitality business ideas are a great place to start!

A guest checking in with a hotel employee.

Best Travel and Hospitality Business Ideas for 2020

1. airbnb business.

Air B N B Business image

An Airbnb business supplies guests with a place to stay within a person’s home. Many travelers are looking for lodging which is a little more personal and unique. Airbnb rentals offer a home feel, versus that of a hotel or motel. Guests may stay as short as one or two days or extended stays up to two weeks.

An Airbnb is a great way to add some extra income, especially if you have unused rooms or lots of space in your house. You will have guests staying in your home, so you should be comfortable talking and interacting with guests. Some homeowners, who travel often, will also rent out their homes when they are out of town. This allows them to receive income and have someone watching their home when they’re not around.

Learn how to start an Airbnb business .

2. AIRPORT SHUTTLE BUSINESS

Airport Shuttle Business image

Airport shuttles transport people between the airport and either their homes, hotels, or where they parked their cars. Airport shuttles are used by business travelers, groups, families, and solo riders. The driver picks travelers up at a predetermined location and drops them off wherever necessary; typically with no more than two stops on each route. Vehicles are generally spacious, with ample room for riders to store their luggage.

Individuals possessing the drive to start their own travel business and the inclination to interact with people would be best suited for this business endeavor. Since much time is spent on the road, the entrepreneur that enjoys driving would be the ideal candidate.

Learn how to start an airport shuttle business .

3. AMUSEMENT PARK

Amusement Park image

Amusement, or theme, parks feature rides, games, and entertainment options in an outdoor or indoor venue. Customers typically pay a single entry fee for access to the entire park. The successful amusement park model focuses on the customer's entire experience, offering a wide range of services and entertainment options including parking, trams, restaurant options, water parks, roller coasters, live animal attractions, stage shows, arcade games, attractive interactive landscaping, and family-friendly fun. The larger the property you own, the more entertainment choices you are able to offer your customers.

You must be a highly motivated individual ready to sink a large initial investment into the concept, design, and implementation of your amusement park. You may need extensive knowledge in the operation of rides, restaurant and guest services, landscaping design, business practices, and have significant leadership skills.

Learn how to start an amusement park .

4. BED AND BREAKFAST

Bed and Breakfast Image

A bed and breakfast business offers travelers an alternative to hotels and motels, by combining sleeping quarters with a full breakfast. Most bed and breakfasts also promise more unique, intimate settings than other lodging options.

Anyone who enjoys hosting others may be well-suited for owning a bed and breakfast business because guests come to B&Bs for a level of hospitality that hotels and motels don’t provide. Business owners should like talking with people, cooking meals, and making guests feel comfortable.

Learn how to start a bed and breakfast .

5. BIKE RENTAL BUSINESS

Bike Rental Business image

Bike rental businesses give customers—who are often, but not necessarily, tourists—bicycles for a short period. Bikes are generally rented for a few hours to recreationally explore the locality. But the customer base might also consist of college students on campus or others who rent for practical reasons. Your business might be a freestanding shop, part of a bike sales and service operation or associated with a hotel or other hospitality business.

Bike rental business owners should be mechanically adept since customers can be hard on bikes. Also, since bikes are often rented to explore the immediate area, you should be highly familiar with your home base and able to suggest tourist attractions. You should have an engaging personality and be motivated to deliver exceptional customer service.

Learn how to start a bike rental business .

6. BIKE TOUR COMPANY

Bike Tour Company image

Do you love exploring your home town or popular tourist destinations on your bike? Does it really make your day when you bring a friend along to see the sights? Operating a bike tour company may be right up your alley. Whether you are simply renting bicycles and maps for patrons to use on their own or providing week-long personalized guided tours that include meals and lodging, this can be a rewarding travel business.

If you are going to run a one-man show, you will need to be physically fit, have fantastic people skills, and enjoy managing the many facets of your business. If you are operating a large tourist attraction, the right owner will have a good background in business management with a focus on the service industry.

Learn how to start a bike tour company .

7. BOUTIQUE TOUR BUSINESS

Boutique Tour Business image

This travel business idea differs from a traditional tour guide service in that the focus is not on the popular tourist destinations. Instead, it focuses more on unique and special experiences. Both local residents and tourists enjoy these types of tours/parties.

People like to do things that feel more authentic and consistent with what locals do versus just taking a sightseeing tour to see the major attractions. These can be very active experiences such as hiking, climbing, bungee-jumping, flying down a wire cable over the tree canopy, whitewater rafting and so much more. Many prefer such active experiences when compared to the traditional bus tours where tour guides describe things as the bus passes them by.

Learn how to start a boutique tour business .

Ready to form your LLC? Check out the  Top LLC Formation Services And, use our free tools to help start your business: Use our  Business Name Generator  for help brainstorming your new venture’s name Learn  how to form an LLC , one of the  best business structures  for travel businesses Use our free  business plan generator  to start planning your business today Get your unique logo with our free  Logo Maker  and start branding your business After finding your perfect idea learn how to  start a business

8. BUS TOUR BUSINESS

Bus Tour Business image

A bus tour business provides tours for tourists as well as locals. Tours of scenic and historical areas and other sites of interest are a valuable community service. Bus tours connect people with others for a shared experience. They also educate people about historical landmarks, local history, geography and other important aspects of your city and the surrounding area.

If you are looking to give people the opportunity to learn more about a locale while enjoying the company of others, a bus tour business is right for you. This is your chance to bring people closer together. Bus tours also enhance understanding and respect for cities, towns, landmarks and special sites. Bus tour customers gain a new appreciation for the area in which the tour is conducted.

Learn how to start a bus tour business .

9. CAMPGROUND

Campground image

If you love the outdoors and some hard work, you could start a campground business. Whether you have land or are purchasing land, you could start enjoying the great outdoors and working for yourself as soon as you get everything set up. You'll provide a place for people who are passing through on their way to another destination and for those who want to enjoy some time connecting with nature. Campers use all sorts of shelters from tents to fully contained RVs.

Before you start a campground business, you'll need the knowledge and willingness it takes to do many things, including accounting, repairs, road maintenance, plumbing, electrical maintenance, and management. You may be able to farm some of these things out, but it is much more cost-effective to do these things yourself.

Learn how to start a campground .

10. CANOE & KAYAK RENTAL BUSINESS

Canoe and Kayak Rental Business image

Many people enjoy being on the water, but they either do not own a boat or want to go boating where they can't bring theirs. A canoe and kayak rental business lets people rent canoes and kayaks to take out on nearby waterways. Customers can take canoes out for as little as an hour or as long as a day or more.

Anyone who enjoys canoeing and kayaking may be well-suited to open a canoe and kayak rental business. Business owners also must be strong enough to move canoes and kayaks onshore.

Learn how to start a canoe & kayak rental business .

Find a Web Domain For Your Travel and Hospitality Business

Securing a web domain and creating a quality website is important for the overall success of a travel and hospitality business.

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Powered by godaddy.com, 11. car rental business.

Car Rental Business image

Another one of many travel business ideas is a car rental company. A car rental business rents vehicles at affordable daily and weekly prices. All sorts of different parties are interested in car rentals. Common customers include business and leisure travelers, those whose vehicles are out of commission and businesses.

This business is ideal for someone who has a sincere interest in automobiles, automobile maintenance, and the driving experience.

Learn how to start a car rental business .

12. CORPORATE RETREAT CENTER

Corporate Retreat Center image

Many companies take employees on retreats for training, development, and team-building experiences. Corporate retreat center businesses offer a place for holding these company-sponsored retreats and frequently help companies plan their retreats.

Anyone who is organized and has strong interpersonal skills may enjoy running a corporate retreat center business. Hosting retreats requires balancing many different tasks, and there’s a constant conversation between the retreat center and the company sponsoring the retreat.

Learn how to start a corporate retreat center .

13. CRUISE LINE

Cruise Line image

A cruise line has one or several large boats designed to accommodate numerous fun-seeking individuals. This business is centered on providing guests with a good time. Cruise liners are a place for relaxation, socialization, and romance. Cruises are in-demand as they provide people with a fun and relaxing means of vacationing. Cruise lines offer all sorts of social activities on and off the ship. This business is a fantastic way to bring people closer to one another, bolster social ties, and provide people with a sense of belonging.

This is the ideal business or someone who is looking for a way to bring people together for a fun, rewarding and memorable experience. If you are a hospitable individual and enjoy providing people with a good time, you should consider starting a cruise line business. Furthermore, if you enjoy life on the water, good food and entertainment, a cruise ship business is worth considering.

Learn how to start a cruise line .

14. DAY SPA

Day Spa image

Day spas provide a relaxing atmosphere and a variety of treatments designed to refresh and rejuvenate. Some of the most common services offered by smaller day spas are facials, massages, manicures and pedicures, waxing, electrolysis, and aromatherapy. Larger day spas with more complex facilities are able to offer additional options such as body wraps, mud baths, or hydrotherapy treatments.

This hospitality business is ideal for those who enjoy relating with people on a personal level to provide services that reduce stress, enhance beauty, and improve health.

Learn how to start a day spa .

15. ECOTOUR BUSINESS

Ecotour Business image

Ecotourism is small scale, low impact tourism that offers travelers an opportunity to learn about the local flora, fauna, and culture. Unlike your standard tour guide service, the focus of ecotourism is to educate guests on how they can positively impact the environment and community they’re visiting. Tourists are able to immerse themselves in the culture and habitat, gaining an understanding of the positive impact each can have on the other. Ecological sustainability and responsibility are the heart of this educating and rewarding experience.

As many consumers ponder the environmental impact humans have had on our environment, there are many who have taken it upon themselves to get out and do something about it. They’ve made it their life’s mission to make positive strides, educating others along the way. Entrepreneurs who have made this their lives’ work and who truly enjoy igniting this passion in others would be best suited for this travel business venture.

Learn how to start an ecotour business .

16. FISHING CHARTER BUSINESS

Fishing Charter Business image

Many people enjoy fishing, but few people have boats, tackle, and knowledge to go fishing far from shore. Fishing charter businesses take people on fishing trips that they otherwise wouldn’t be able to experience. These trips may range from going into swamps to venturing far offshore. Customers are usually allowed to keep any fish that they catch (assuming the fish are legal to keep).

Anyone who is passionate about fishing and enjoys sharing that passion with other people may be well-suited for running a fishing charter business. Customers expect fishing charter captains to be knowledgeable about and have a love for fishing, and sharing that knowledge and love helps ensure customers have a great time.

Learn how to start a fishing charter business .

17. GLAMPING BUSINESS

Glamping Business image

A glamping business is next on our comprehensive list of travel startup ideas. Glamping, or "glamorous camping," has taken England by storm and is quickly becoming popular within the United States. Although there aren’t any official statistics for glamping in the U.S., industry insiders have seen a big increase in demand recently. For entrepreneurs, this demand represents an exciting opportunity.

People who enjoy connecting with others and being outdoors may enjoy running a glamping business. Interpersonal skills are necessary because much of the business involves making guests feel welcome. A passion for the outdoors is helpful, for glamping is largely about connecting with nature.

Learn how to start a glamping business .

18. GOLF COURSE

Golf Course image

Golf courses provide these people with a place to play the sport. Most courses are 9 or 18 holes, and they may have other amenities, such as clubhouses and pro shops. Anyone who is well-versed in a variety of aspects of business and enjoys golfing themselves may be qualified to run a golf course.

It’s important to have a broad business background because golf courses are multi-faceted businesses. Running one might include course maintenance, employee management, restaurant service, event hosting, and investment opportunities.

Learn how to start a golf course .

19. HAUNTED ATTRACTION

Haunted House Business image

A haunted thrill park is any space designed to entice customers by offering a scary or thrilling experience. Americans spend about $7 billion on Halloween, and $300 million on haunted houses. Haunted thrill parks may be located in makeshift, temporary houses, corn mazes, or even old prisons or asylums. Typically, workers will dress up in costumes and pop out at customers to give them a fright. Props such as fake chainsaws or straight jackets are often used alongside fog machines and soundtracks of creepy noises.

There is an art to scaring people while keeping them safe, so an entrepreneur will have to coordinate the right scenes while ensuring workers understand how to handle the guests. Those who already have a love of haunted houses likely understand what's currently out there, and what people would like to see in the future.

Learn how to start a haunted attraction .

20. HELICOPTER TOUR BUSINESS

Helicopter Tour Business image

A helicopter tour business takes customers on short flights so they can view their city from a bird's-eye view. This is typically marketed as a more expensive service for a more adventurous clientele, and it adds a touch of excitement to any community.

This business is ideal for those already licensed to fly a helicopter, as there is a significant investment of time and money required to acquire a license. As such, it typically makes a good business for retired military personnel. Aside from a knowledge of helicopters, one of the best qualities for this business is to be a “people person,” as you must be able to charm customers before, during, and after the flight.

Learn how to start a helicopter tour business .

Start a Travel and Hospitality Business In Your State

21. hotel business.

Hotel Business image

A hotel can be any commercial building that charges money to travelers who need a room to stay. This can be anything from a standard multi-unit building to luxury stand-alone villas. As airline prices drop and the economy improves, corporate and personal travel continues to increase. The hotel industry generated just under $200 billion in revenue in 2016.

This startup idea is good for someone who enjoys the hospitality business. Those who run hotels have to be adept at catering to a number of different needs, so an owner will need to be flexible when it comes to how they respond to different travelers and consistent when it comes to delivering unparalleled customer service. From business travelers to young families, each guest will have their own priorities when it comes to where they stay.

Learn how to start a hotel business .

22. HOUSE-SITTING BUSINESS

House-Sitting Business image

House sitting is a service offered to customers who are out of town or otherwise away from the home. House sitters may look after pets, plants, or just the home itself. House sitters help the community in a number of ways. They can ward off criminals by simply being in the house, and they keep cats and dogs from having to be put into kennels.

This business is good for those who want to maintain people’s homes while they’re away. Ideally, house sitters should be animal lovers who know how to take care of a variety of different types of dogs and cats.

Learn how to start a house-sitting business .

23. KENNEL BUSINESS

Kennel Business image

Many dog owners, for a variety of reasons, don’t bring their dogs with them on trips. A kennel business gives dog owners a safe place to leave their dogs while they’re away. At a kennel, dogs have a safe place to rest, are fed and get exercise.

Anyone who loves dogs may be well-suited for owning a kennel business, as most of the work involves taking care of dogs. Owners often have to play with dogs, and they sometimes need to physically move stubborn pooches. Therefore, owners should be in decent physical condition.

Learn how to start a kennel business .

Marina Business image

Boat owners need a place to keep their boats, both during the boating season and the off-season. While some boats can be kept on a trailer and launched, other vessels cannot -- and even boaters who have trailerable vessels often don’t want to have to launch and take out their boat every time they go out on the water.

A marina business offers boaters a place to keep their boats, docking or mooring them in the water during the boating season, and storing them on land for the rest of the year.

Learn how to start a marina .

25. PARTY BUS BUSINESS

Party Bus Business image

One more of several popular travel business ideas is a party bus business. A party bus business will transport people for major events, so they don’t have to worry about the logistics of getting from place to place. While people on the bus are generally invited to consume alcohol (if they're of age), party buses don’t necessarily have to offer adult beverages as a part of their business model.

This business is excellent for someone who understands both the large and small aspects of major events. Clients want to be able to relax and feel as though they're taken care of, so they need someone who is confident in making decisions quickly and being able to think on the fly in the face of potential hiccups or even outright emergencies.

Learn how to start a party bus business .

26. PET-SITTING BUSINESS

Pet-Sitting Business image

Pet sitting businesses offer pet owners a variety of animal care services, including exercising their pets while they are at work. They also provide an affordable alternative to boarding pets at a kennel during vacations or business trips. Being able to remain in their own home environment can reduce separation anxiety for both pets and their owners.

This is a great business idea for animal lovers who enjoy walking and staying active. It’s ideal for people who prefer lower stress levels, since spending time with pets has been shown to reduce stress. Those who are compassionate and responsible, yet prefer to work alone and be their own bosses as well as make their own schedules thrive in this type of business.

Learn how to start a pet-sitting business .

27. SCOOTER RENTAL BUSINESS

Scooter Rental Business image

A scooter rental business offers customers a fun and affordable option for short-term transportation. For most, scooters can be rented with hourly, half-day, and whole day rates.

If you have experience in retail sales or product rentals, knowledge of small engines, a strong work ethic, and a business mind, a scooter rental business could be your ticket to financial independence. Especially if you have a background in scooters and motorcycles—either as a rider, enthusiast, or from working in a motorbike retail business—your expertise could set you apart from the competition.

Learn how to start a scooter rental business .

28. SCUBA DIVING BUSINESS

Scuba Diving Business image

Scuba diving affords an unparalleled experience with the underwater world. However, safe diving requires training, equipment, and often a guide. Scuba diving businesses provide divers with the training, equipment, and local knowledge they need to have a fun and safe time underwater.

While scuba diving businesses can generate sizable profits, most business owners don’t get into this type of work solely for the financial return on investment. Instead, they’re passionate scuba divers themselves and are drawn to the scuba lifestyle. They like the idea of making money doing a sport they love.

Learn how to start a scuba diving business .

29. SKI RESORT

Ski Resort image

Ski resorts are one of the main places people go for wintertime fun. Resorts offer skiing, snowboarding, equipment rentals and lessons. Many resorts also have concessions, a restaurant, a bar, and other amenities.

Someone with a diverse skillset and background in business may be well-suited for running a ski resort business. The multi-faceted nature of ski resorts requires knowledge of multiple aspects of running a business. For instance, running a ski resort business might include equipment maintenance, snowmaking decisions, concession management, and program creation.

Learn how to start a ski resort .

30. SKYDIVING BUSINESS

Skydiving Business image

Customers of skydiving businesses receive access to the complete experience, either in tandem with an experienced jumper or solo. The entertainment package includes the airplane ride, all equipment, landing site—also known as the dropzone or DZ—and the leadership/coaching of a jumpmaster. Other products or services might also be offered through the business, from parachute training before the jump to photography or video production of the jump.

Most people who would consider starting such a business are experienced jumpers, but that’s not mandatory. You should, at a minimum, feel comfortable convincing partners or investors and officials of the wisdom of your plans and your skydiving business’ value to the community.

Learn how to start a skydiving business .

31. SNORKELING BUSINESS

Snorkeling Business image

A snorkeling business will typically sell or rent out various safety gear and snorkeling equipment to water-lovers of all ages. These travel businesses can also offer tours to their customers in addition to or instead of a physical store location.

Owners should ideally have an inherent love of the water, so they can introduce their passion for exploration to new generations of snorkelers. They should also enjoy working with people who may not know very much about how to use the equipment.

Learn how to start a snorkeling business .

32. SOUVENIR SHOP

Souvenir Shop image

As the owner of a souvenir shop, you’ll stock your retail store, cart or kiosk with an inventory of interest to tourists. Your offerings will reflect the demographics and socioeconomic strata of the market. For instance, if you’re at a vacation destination that draws young families, you might stock novelty trinkets, toys, t-shirts, candy, and gum. However, if you’ll attract more sophisticated travelers, you might sell pricier jewelry with a local slant -- ie, designed with stones or gems found in the region.

You can succeed if you know your market. You must be able to match the inventory with the needs of vacationers and at an affordable price point.

Learn how to start a souvenir shop .

33. SUMMER CAMP

Summer Camp Business

Successful summer camp business owners respond to the needs of their customers and communities by developing curriculum and activities that focus on their specific interests, goals, and objectives. Traditional summer camps offer outdoor activities such as hiking, building campfires, and canoeing. Sleep-away camps offer food and lodging as well as trained supervision during physical and educational activities. Day camps do not include lodging and offer more specialized learning activities such as computer science, performing arts and music. Today, there are summer camp programs available for nearly every imaginable purpose, interest and need.

This business is a good choice for people who love teaching but prefer a beautiful natural setting to a formal classroom. High-energy individuals thrive on the combination of physical and mental activity this type of business provides. Creative people welcome the challenge of providing fun, interesting, and engaging songs, games, and educational activities for campers. Those who enjoy working with and enriching the lives of children and families experience a high level of job satisfaction within this industry.

Learn how to start a summer camp .

34. SURFING SCHOOL

Surfing School image

Running a surf school and teaching surfing classes is a lifestyle with a dedication to the ocean water. It has the requirement to live on the coast of a country. The best places in America are the west coast of California and the islands of Hawaii. You may also find some decent surfing in other parts of the world such as Australia, Costa Rica, Mexico, and even in exotic places like Fiji and the beach areas of Sanya, China. No matter where you decide is best, you need to love the ocean water, work in a nice surfing spot, and want to teach people how to surf.

Surfers are people who enjoy the surfing lifestyle. Every day is a day at the beach when the waves are good. Surfers who want to teach others are even more special because they need to have patience when being an instructor for first-time learners. The best surfers enjoy daily surfing and catching good waves for them is a spiritual experience.

Learn how to start a surfing school .

35. TOUR COMPANY

Tour Company image

Tour guide services are most often offered in cities large, world-famous cities and cities that have rich historical backgrounds. Guests can be taken on a tour by foot or by vehicle, depending upon the distance that will be covered during the tour.

The self-motivator with a thirst for knowledge who enjoys sharing what they’ve learned with others would do best owning a tour guide business.

Learn how to start a tour company .

Learn more about starting a business by visting the  U.S. Small Business Administration .

36. TRAVEL AGENCY

Travel Agency image

Most travel agencies earn revenue through commissions. Consumers often choose agencies because they help cut down on time needed to research various locations and book accommodations. A popular trend in the industry is online agencies, which operate mostly or exclusively online.

This business idea is perfect for individuals who are passionate about travel, love learning about and visiting new places, and are very detail-oriented. Travel agency owners have very flexible hours but usually only after they have an established book of clients.

Learn how to start a travel agency .

37. TRAVEL PHOTOGRAPHY BUSINESS

Travel Photography Business image

A travel photographer uses their camera to provide high-quality images to a variety of clients that may include websites, travel blogs, print magazines, television ads, and framed prints for sale. You will need to travel extensively to a variety of locations to deliver the landscapes, hotel rooms, and recreational shots that your clients are looking for. You'll work hard to develop a variety of clients who work with you to determine where your next shoot should be while your self-promotion and marketing will reach out to new clients.

A successful travel photographer will have extensive knowledge of how to use their camera to get the highest definition images containing dramatic landscapes. They will need to enjoy living on the road, hiking, and exploring distant locales to get the perfect shot. They should be sociable and able to toot their own horn in order to develop new clients and customers.

Learn how to start a travel photography business .

38. WALKING TOUR BUSINESS

Walking Tour Business image

Next on our list of travel business ideas is a walking tour business. Tourists are constantly in search of hidden gems and insider knowledge about their destination, which is what walking tour businesses provide. These travel businesses take tourists on guided explorations of an area, during which time tourists see both famous locations and lesser-known attractions while getting lots of local knowledge.

Most walking tours explore the area through a particular interest, and there are tours for all kinds of interests. For example, in New York City there are walking tour businesses that offer guided explorations of the city’s haunted locations, architecture and street art.

Learn how to start a walking tour business .

39. WATERPARK

Waterpark image

Amusement parks are a popular vacation destination for families all over the world. Few things are more exhilarating than experiencing the rides, laughing and screaming as you make your way to the bottom. Couple that with water, and you have a family-friendly adventure for individuals of all ages.

Entrepreneurs with previous small business ownership or management would be best suited for this business venture. Innovators who enjoy a fast-paced atmosphere and are dedicated to reinvesting a portion of their profits can turn a small waterpark into a million-dollar enterprise in a matter of years.

Learn how to start a waterpark .

40. WINE TOUR BUSINESS

Wine Tour Business image

Wine tours educate people about grapes, fermentation, and flavor profiles. From varietals to harvesting techniques to the best way to taste the wine, tours are meant to be as informative as they are fun. These tours can help people appreciate all that goes into a single sip, and promote local businesses by exposing their product to more people.

This travel business is good for someone who already has a healthy interest in how vineyards work, and who enjoys teaching people in an entertaining way. Ideally, it should be far less about enjoying a good bottle of wine, and far more about being a good (and organized) educator.

Learn how to start a wine tour business .

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50 Best Travel and Tourism Business ideas

By: Author Tony Martins Ajaero

Home » Business ideas » Hospitality, Travel & Tourism

Travel Business ideas

The  travels and tourism industry is a major source of income for most States in the United States of America and of course most countries of the world. The travels and tourism industry provide jobs directly or indirectly to countless numbers of entrepreneurs all over the globe.

The opportunities that is available in the industry cuts across service deliveries and product sales, amongst others.The industry is open to both big time investors who have the financial capacity to invest in the aviation industry and also aspiring entrepreneurs who just want to make a living but don’t have start – capital.

Here are 50 thriving and profitable business ideas in the travel and tourism industry that an entrepreneur or investor who is looking towards starting a business can choose from;

Best Travel and Tourism Business ideas

Tourist guide.

Tour Guide Business

One of the travel and tourism related businesses that an entrepreneur can successfully start with little or no money is to become a tourist guide. All that is required to successfully launch this type of business is to ensure that you can speak at least one or more foreign languages.

This could be English, French, Spanish, Chinese, Portuguese or German. Furthermore, you must also know the terrain pretty well.

Once you are certain that you can effectively translate or interpret, then all that is expected of you to do is to position yourself in places where you can have access to tourists. This could be in a  hotel lobby (you would have to negotiate with the hotel manager ) or via referrals from a travels and tours company.

Restaurant and Bar

Restaurant and bar is yet another business that is part of the business value chain of the travels and tourism industry. Although, most tourists may prefer to eat the food they are familiar with, but it wouldn’t be out of place if you could also include some local delicacy as part of the food you sell in your restaurant.

The truth is that some tourists make it mandatory to try out the local delicacies of the community they are visiting. So, ensure that you include local delicacies as part of the food you sell in your restaurant if your restaurant is located in a tourist town.

Hotel and Lodge (Motel, Inn et al)

Hotel Business

Of course, it is a must for visitors to look for places to lodge when they visit any town. Unless they have a host who is ready to accommodate them for the duration they stay for. So, hotel and lodge is a very vital  business that is needed in tourist towns .

As a matter of fact, before tourists visit a tourist town, part of their findings will be how to locate the nearest hotel and lodge in the town. The truth is that if a tourist town lacks standard hotels and lodges, then they are likely to attract fewer visitors (tourists).

So, as an investor, if you are looking towards starting a travels and tourism related business, then one of your options is to invest in hotels and lodge. Or better still,you can  start a bed and breakfast business .

Taxi and Bus Shuttle Business

Taxi Business

Taxi and bus shuttle business is another fantastic travels and tourism related business idea that thrives pretty well in a tourist town. Of course, tourists would want to move together from one tourist site to another hence the need for a bus shuttle services.

The bus shuttle could also help transport them (tourists) on arrival from the airport to their hotels and also from their hotels to the airports on their departure. Taxi is also ideal for couples, an individual or a group of 3 or 4 persons.

Vehicle Rental Business

Rental business  is yet another travels and tourism related business that is viable and profitable in a tourist town. There are several stuffs that tourists could rent when they visit tourist sites. It could be a car, scooter, speed boat, canoe or even horse, donkey or camel.

The bottom line is to conduct your market survey to know what tourists may likely need in the tourist town that they aren’t able to bring along when they are visiting. Once you have an idea of the stuff that is needed by tourists, then all you need to do is to purchase enough quantities of the stuffs and then position your business in a place that will be visible to tourists.

Photography Business

Photography business is an added business venture in the value chain of travels and tourism industry. Although, most tourists would always travel with their cameras to capture beautiful sites and moments albeit in an armature manner, but if they have the option to  make use of a professional photographer , they would gladly embrace it.

So, one of the business ideas that is suitable for a tourist town is the photography business. If you are a  professional photographer , you can consider opening your own photography business. That is if you live in a tourist town or you can partner with a travels and tours company to become one of their official photographer.

Souvenir Shop

Souvenir shop is yet another travels and tours business idea that is highly profitable in any tourist town. Loads of visitors would prefer to buy local crafts, unique gifts or native wears, et al from a tourist town as a mark of remembrance.

Subsequently, if you are looking for a travels and tourism related business to setup in a tourist town, then you can consider opening a souvenir shop that will be stocked with local crafts and native wears et al. Just ensure that your souvenir shop is well located and looks attractive.

Nightclub Business

Night club is another business idea in the business value chain of the travels and tourism industry that an investor or entrepreneur who is looking towards starting business in the industry should consider starting. This type of business can do pretty well in a tourist town.

This type of business is profitable, but it may not thrive in all tourist towns, especially smaller towns with quiet lifestyle. So before you venture into nightclub business, ensure that you have conducted a thorough feasibility studies and market survey to be sure that the business will thrive.

Luggage Delivery Services

Another travels and tourism related business idea that an entrepreneur who is looking towards starting a business in the industry should consider starting is luggage delivery services.

Luggage delivery business is all about helping travelers to avoid the hassles of baggage merry-go-round waiting and security checks. As a matter of fact luggage delivery services go the extra mile to provide luggage for their customers. All the customer need to do is just to pack their traveling clothes and other belongings that they are traveling with inside the luggage.

What the luggage Delivery Company does is to take and store the luggage on their behalf. They also help in encoding the contents online so that the owner can update its contents against another trip.

Coffee Café

Coffee café is yet an extra business idea that an entrepreneur who is looking towards making money from the business value chain of travels and tourism industry should consider starting. As a matter of fact, there is hardly any airport where you are not going to find a coffee café. The truth is that,  coffee café businesses  do pretty well in a tourist town.

So, if you are looking towards starting a travels and tourism related business, then one of your options is to  open a coffee shop  in and around the airport if you have the opportunity to. Location is key for this type of business except you want to operate a mobile /cart coffee shop business.

Start a Welcoming Service

Another easy to establish travels and tourism related business that an entrepreneur who is looking towards starting a business in the industry should consider starting.

Welcoming services is all about welcoming tourists to a tourist town and in turn giving them useful information and of course package of coupons, samples from local businesses, and other opportunities that are available in the town. This type of business is one of the travels and tours business that an entrepreneur can successfully start with little or no start – up capital.

So, if you are looking for a business to start, then you should consider starting a welcoming services business; it is a cool way of earning money.

Start Language Translation Services

Language translation services is yet another thriving and profitable business that an entrepreneur who is looking towards starting a business in the travels and tourism industry.

All that is required to successfully launch this type of business is to ensure that you can speak at least one or more foreign languages; it could be English, French, Spanish, Chinese, Portuguese or German and of course other local languages.

So, if you are looking towards  earning income from the business value chain  of the travels and tourism industry, then you should consider starting a language translation services. One good thing about this type of business is that you can successfully start it with little or no start – up capital.

Start a Limousine Service

Limousine Business

Another travels and tourism related business idea that an entrepreneur who is tinkering with starting a business in the industry should consider starting is a limousine services. This type of business is all about making limousine available to transport tourists from one location to another.

In most cases, celebrities are the major clients for this type of business. So if you are looking towards starting a business in the travels and tourism industry, then one of your options is to start a limousine services business . You can as well add other exotic cars to your flit of cars for this business.

Start a Self – Service Laundromat Business

Laundromat Business

Self – service Laundromat business is yet another means of earning income from the business value chain in the travels and tourism industry that an entrepreneur who is looking towards starting a business in the industry should consider starting.

As the name implies, a self-service laundry or coin wash / laundry or Laundromat is a laundry facility where people come in to personally wash and dry their clothes; technically, customers provide their own labor and still pay the for  making use of the laundry equipment  available.

Although the laundry industry can be said to be a competitive industry, but it does not in any way stop entrepreneurs who are creative to still make headway in the industry. It is indeed a profitable business especially when the business is located an area that tourists visits. No doubt a busy city with growing population is highly suitable for Laundromat.

Car Rental Services

Car Rental Business

A  car rental service  is another cool travels and tourism related business that an entrepreneur who is looking towards earning income from the business value chain in the travels and tourism industry can successfully launch. A car rental service is all about making cars available for rent to those who may need cars for one purpose or the other.

So, if you are looking towards starting a travels and tourism related business, one of your options is to go into car rental services.

If you live in busy cities like Tokyo, Las Vegas, Milan, and Lagos et al then you should consider starting a car rental services business; this type of business is highly thriving and profitable in busy cities and places with huge influx of tourists.

Jet Ski Rental Services

Jet Ski Rental Business

Another travels and tourism related business that an entrepreneur who is looking towards starting a business should consider is Jet Ski rental services. The truth is that starting a rental business is one of the easiest ways to start out as an entrepreneur -especially if you can’t afford to go through the challenges involve in the productions of goods.

So, if you live around any beach where people either ski for fun or for sports, then you should consider starting your own Jet Ski rental business.

You can indeed make cool cash from this line of business with little effort if you are well positioned.  Jet Ski rental business  can only be restricted to a certain geographical area, which is why before starting this type of business, you must ensure that you are in a place where this type of business thrives basically because there is a beach and people visit the beach.

Start a Travels and Tourism Related TV Program

Another profitable and thriving business idea in the travels and tourism industry that an entrepreneur who intends starting a business in the industry should consider starting is to start a travels and tourism related TV show. Everyone who intends travelling to a location as a tourist need all the information they can lay their hands own as regards the destination they are heading to.

One thing is certain, if your TV program is well organized and well – packaged to address key issues as it relates to the travels and tourism industry, then you will surely attract large viewership and of course mouthwatering sponsorship deals from major players in the value chain of the travels and tours industry in your country.

It is a cool way of making money, but you must always be your toe when it comes to developing interesting, trendy and useful contents for the TV program.

Start a Security Related Radio Talk Show

Of course it is more expensive to buy slots on TV than it is for radio. As such, if you are looking towards starting a travels and tourism related talk show and you don’t have the finance to purchase airtime on TV, then going on radio is your best options.

The truth is that, if your radio talk show is well organized and well – packaged to address key issues in the travels and tourism industry and useful tips about key tourists destinations, then you will sure attract large listenership and of course mouthwatering sponsorship deals from major players in the travels and tourism industry in your country.

It is a cool way of making money, but you must always be your toe when it comes to developing interesting and useful contents as it relates to travel and tourism for the radio talk show.

Start Blogging on Travels and Tourism Related Topics

Another means of earning income from the business value chain of the travels and tourism industry that an entrepreneur can successfully launch with little or no start – up capital is to start blogging on travels and tourism related topics.

It is interesting to note that there are loads of people out there who are making millions annually from blogging. If you are a travels and tourism professional or someone who has sound knowledge in the travels and tourism industry, one of the businesses that you can consider starting is to start blogging on travels and tourism related subjects.

The truth is that if your blog has useful and helpful contents, you will attract loads of traffic and if you have loads of traffic on your blog, you can easily secure good advertising deals from stakeholders and other businesses in your blog. Just ensure that you update your blog regularly with trendy and useful travels and tourism tips and you will continue to attract traffic.

Go into the Publication of Travels and Tourism Magazine (Travel Guide)

There are several businesses that an entrepreneur can launching the value chain of travels and tourism industry and one of them is to start publishing travels and tours magazines. Information is key in any industry and all you need to do to be able to gain ground with this type of business is to ensure that you have relevant contents in your magazine per time.

Part of the information that you should make available in your travels and tours magazine are, the prices of tickets for various airline companies, list of hotels, tourist locations, the various business opportunities in the industry, the latest trends, news and information as it relates to the industry, and advisory services to investors who are looking towards investing in the travels and tourism.

Start a Private Escort Firm

Another money spinning business that an entrepreneur who is interested in earning revenue from the business value chain in the travels and tourism industry should consider starting is a private escort firm.

Private escort firms provides security for individuals most especially tourists and visitors who wants to move from one locations to another with valuables, and huge amount of cash et al and also for transport companies and haulage companies as well.

So if you are looking towards starting a travels and tourism related business, then one of your options is to start a private escort firm. It is important to state that you would need to apply and obtain license and permits from the appropriate authority in your country.

Supply Bodyguards to Tourists

Bodyguard Business

Another profitable and of course thriving business that an entrepreneur who is interested in earning money from the business value chain in the travels and tourism industry should consider starting is to start supplying bodyguards to tourists especially celebrities who are visiting tourist locations.

In order to successfully launch this type of business, you should be able to maintain a rich network of bodyguards. Because whenever you are called to supply them, you should be able to quickly summon them within a short period of time.

Start a Travels and Tourism Consulting Business

Travels and tourism consulting business is yet another thriving and profitable business in the travels and tourism industry. If you have robust qualification and experience, one of the travels and tourism related business you can successfully start is a travels and tourism consulting business.

There are several clients you can work for as a travels and tourism consultant. Your clientele base will range from corporate organizations, to government agencies and from individual tourists to businesses in the travels and tourism industry. It is a cool way of earning good income from the industry.

Open a community Museum (Arts and Culture)

If you are interested in arts and culture, one of the travels and tourism related business ideas that you should consider starting is to open a community museum; a place where the art and culture of your community will be preserved.

If you are considering  starting this type of social enterprise , then it will be to your advantage to partner with your local government and perhaps institutions of higher learning in your city or community. Aside from the revenue that you will generate from visitors and tourists, you can also receive grants and funding from donor agencies, individuals, corporate organizations and from the government of your country

Organize Carnivals and Other Related Events in Your Community

Another interesting means of earning money from the business value chain in the travels and tourism industry that an entrepreneur should consider starting especially if you are good with organizing events is to start organizing carnivals and other related events in your community especially if your community attract tourists and visitors on a regular basis.

If your events are well packaged, you can successfully get financial support and sponsorship deals from your local government, corporate organizations that operate within your community and from individuals who are interested in the event you intend organizing.

Taxi / Cab Services

Taxi / cab services is yet an added means of earning money from the business value chain in the travels and tourism industry that an entrepreneur who is looking towards starting a business should consider starting. With just a car, an entrepreneur can successfully launch his or her tax business.

As a matter of fact with hard work and dedication, a serious minded entrepreneur can grow his taxi business from just one taxi and to fleet of taxis covering an entire city or state. Taxi business is a profitable business in the united states of America and in most countries of the world where tourist visits on a regular basis.

Airport Bus Shuttle Services

An airport bus shuttle service is still an option to consider. As you can start an airport shuttle business and still make loads of profit. Airport shuttle service is all about transporting passengers / tourists and their luggage within the airport, or from their hotels to the airport and vice versa.

Depending on the kind of permit you obtained to operate your airport shuttle, you would need to acquire standard and comfortable automobile for this kind of service.Of course, you need to put people with disabilities into consideration when making plans on the kind of shuttle bus or cars to purchase.

All you need to do to get started with pursuing this line of business is to make enquiries from the airport authority in your areas to know if private companies are allowed to run a shuttle bus service in the airport and the rules and regulation governing shuttle bus operators.

Start an Airline Company

Airline Business

Starting an airline company is yet another thriving and profitable business that an entrepreneur who is interested in starting a big time business in the travels and tourism industry you should consider. This might sound interesting, but the truth remains that this kind of business sure is very capital intensive.

This is as a result of the high maintenance fee that is involved and what have you. If you are a big time investor and you have been a lover of aviation, and want to build a business around the industry, then you can start an airline company. You may look at getting loans from banks, individuals, as well as angel investors, as you look to launch out.

Ticketing and Reservation Services

Ticket Reselling Shop

A Ticketing and reservation service is perhaps one of the most popular money – spinning business in the travels and tourism industry that an entrepreneur who is interested in starting a business in the industry should consider starting.

Once people scale through the difficult hurdle of getting a visa, the next thing they begin to consider or rather putting in their expense budget would be tickets. It is for this reason that the business is a very profitable one. You too may consider cashing in on the industry by starting a ticketing and reservation business.

In starting this business, you will need a great wealth of knowledge. That is why you can begin to look at having ticketing deals and stuff like that.

Helicopter Transportation Services

Another thriving and profitable travels and tourism related business that an investor who is looking towards starting a business in the industry should consider starting is helicopter transportation services. There are times when people will need to hire helicopters for official and pleasure use.

This is why there are several helicopter transportation services available. This is one of the reasons why you can look at starting a helicopter transportation services. Do note that starting this type of trade doesn’t come easy as you would need thousands, upon thousands of dollars. Hence, you would need to first sit and run your analysis before launching this type of business.

Start a Travel Agency

Travel and Tour Agency

Another highly thriving and profitable travels and tourism business that an entrepreneur who is looking towards starting a business in the industry should consider starting is a travel agency. Travel agencies render services that cover all aspect of traveling.

They help their clients in securing visas, purchase flight tickets,  book hotels, book taxi cabs  and bus shuttle services and of course make arrangement for site seeing amongst other services.

So, if you are looking towards starting a business in the travels and tours industry, then one of your options is to start a travel agency. It is a cool way of making money from the industry and with little start – up capital a serious minded entrepreneur can successfully launch this type of business.

Travel Directory

If you are looking towards leveraging on the travels and tourism industry to earn money, then one of your options should be to develop travel directory. A directory is a comprehensive listing of several businesses and services within a particular sector.

The truth is that people usually search for any available information they can lay their hands on especially when they are about embarking on a journey hence the need for travel directory. You can make your travel directory available both offline and online so as to give your potential clients the options to choose what best suits them.

Start a Business That Organizes Excursions for School Children

It is the tradition in most schools especially primary and secondary school to take their students on excursion once in a while. Excursion is an avenue where students travel out of their schools to get first hand experiential learning.

So if you are good with organizing trips and you are looking towards making money from the travel and tourism industry, then one of your options is to packaged excursion trips for schools. If you are good at marketing, you will be able to seal business deals with lots of schools in and around your community.

Start a Coaching Center to Prepare Students for Finance Related Certification Exams

It is the practice for students who want to write professional exams to attend coaching center in order to prepare effectively for their exams.

If you are academic incline, then one of the businesses you should consider starting in the travels and tourism industry is to open a coaching center where students attend lectures in preparation for travels and tourism related certification exams such as IATTA certifications and other ticketing related certifications et al.

It is a cool way of making money and you will definitely attract loads of students if the success rate (those who become chattered) is much in your coaching center.

Build and Sale Customized Travels and Tours Related Software Applications

Developing and selling of travels and tours related software applications is yet another cool way of making money from the business value chain in the travels and tourism industry.

If you are a software developer, then you should consider developing customized software applications geared towards simplifying business processes in the travels and tourism industry, software applications that will help simplify processes in the industry.

You can as well work with your client to develop tailored software application that suits perfectly into their business. In marketing your product, you would have to go out of your way to convince stakeholders in the industry to patronize you.

Open an Online Hotel Booking Sites

Another means of earning good income from the business value chain in the travels and tourism industry is to open an online hotel booking site.

What you need to do is to ensure that you network with hotels in your country and even outside your country to get them listed on your site and most importantly, you should agree with them one the commission or percentage cut you will get when a customer book their hotel through you.

Start a ‘Travel Now Pay Later’ Scheme

There are loads of people who are finding it difficult to save – up for vacation hence they’ve been procrastinating when it comes to going on vacation. If you are looking towards starting a travels and tourism business that can help such people why you earning good returns, then you should consider starting a Travel now Pay Later Scheme.

Travel no pay later scheme is business that helps people make all the necessary travel arrangement and also foot the bills for the journey while they spread the payment for over a period of time as agreed. Of course they payment will attract some form of interest and you should only target those that have the capacity to pay.

Start a Charter Flight Service

Another thriving and profitable business venture that an entrepreneur who is looking towards starting a business in the travels and tourism industry should consider starting is a chatter flight service business. No doubt there are loads of people out there who can  afford to charter private jets  for as long as they want it.

So, if you are looking towards starting this type of business, then you should target such clients. Although this type of business is highly capital intensive especially if you own the jets, but at the same time it is a profitable business.

Private Jet Charter Business

There are loads of religious worshipers out there who are willing to give up anything to go on a pilgrimage journey just for the purpose of visiting religious sites. For example, it is the practice for Christian folks to visit Jerusalem and also it is the practice for Muslim folks to visit Mecca to perform religious rites et al.

So if you are looking towards starting a business in the travels and tourism industry, then one of your options in to start a pilgrimage travelling company. Of course you can only concentrate on one religion, so if you are a Christian, your best option is to work with Christians and if you are a Muslim, your best option is to work with Muslims.

Start the Rental of Canoes and Speed Boats

Another thriving and profitable business venture that an entrepreneur who is interested in starting a business in the travels and tourism business should consider starting is to start the rental of canoes and speed boats.

If you live in the Caribbean or a riverine area that attracts tourists, one of the travels and tours related business idea that you should start is to start renting canoes and speed boats to tourists. It is a cool way of earning money but you must ensure that you have lifejackets and other safety measure in place if you intend starting this type of business.

Start a Boat Cruise Business

Boat cruise business is yet another money – spinning travels and tourism related business that an entrepreneur who is interested in starting a business in the industry should consider starting. One of the ways tourists catch fun is via boat cruise and if they have the opportunity to purchase tickets for a boat cruise they will. Although this type of business is capital intensive, but it is highly profitable.

Organize Tours for Musicians

Another thriving and profitable business venture that an entrepreneur who has good organizational skills should consider starting is to start organizing tours for musicians.

All you need to do to get started is to ensure that you have more than a handful of cities where you are certain there are loads of fans that will be willing to pay to listen to a musician under your company; it could be cities in different countries and it could cities within a country. It is a cool way of making money but you must work with others to achieve success in this type of business

Organize Trade Delegation Trips

If you have good organizational skills, one of the travels and tourism related business that you can successfully launch is to start organizing trade delegation trips for business people and aspiring entrepreneurs.

Trade delegation trips involves taking aspiring entrepreneurs and business people from one country to another country for the purpose of understudying different industries and businesses and also to network with local business men and women in the host city / country.

So if you are looking towards starting a travels and tourism related business, then one of your options is to start organizing trade delegation trips. Just ensure that you work with the chambers of commerce and industries in your country; they are your major clients.

Organize Student Exchange Program

Another travels and tourism related business that an entrepreneur who is looking towards starting a business in the industry should consider starting is organizing student exchange programs. There are loads of students who are more than willing to travel out of their country to participate in international programs.

It is an avenue for them to network and socialize with international students. It is a cool way of making money but you must work hard to ensure that students get value for their monies.

Organize International Retreats for Corporate Executives

No doubt there are corporate organizations who take their executives on international retreats in a regular basis and in most cases that work with organizations that help them arrange such programs. So if you are good with organizing trips, one of the travels and tourism related business that you can successfully start is to start organizing international retreats for corporate executives.

Of course should be able to convince them of what they stand to gain if they patronize your services; your value proposition should be worth the while if you want corporate organizations to pay for your services. It is indeed a cool way of making money.

Organize Travels and Tours Expos / Fairs

There are loads of players in the travels and tourism business value chain who are looking for platforms to showcase and market their goods and services to their target market. One of such platforms they can leverage on is travels and tours fairs / expos; a place where entrepreneurs and organizations in the industry can attend to promote and market their goods and services.

So if you are good at organizing events and if you are interested in starting a business in the travels and tours industry, then one of your options is to start organizing travels and tours fairs / expos.

You can organize this event at a city level, state level, national level and international level. The truth is that, if the fair / expo is well organized, you will sure attract not just startups in the travels and tours industry, but also major players in the industry.

Start the Rental of Horse and Camels

Another easy means of earning money from the value chain in the travels and tourism industry is the rental of horses and camels. If you have visited a beach or you have been to the desert, you will realize that tourists pay to ride these animals. This type of business is easy to start, but you must ensure that your camels and horses are well kept and trained.

Organize International Conferences

If you are looking towards making money from the business value chain in the travels and tourism industry, then one of your options is to start organizing international conferences targeted towards a particular industry.

You can decide to start organizing international conferences for international players in the travels and tourism industry. The truth is that, if you conference is well publicized; you will sure attract participants from different countries of the world.

Start a Ferry Business

Another travels and tours related business idea that an entrepreneur who is looking towards starting a business in the industry should consider starting is a ferry business. If you live in a riverine area or in an island, then you should consider investing in this type of business.

Start a Scooter Rental Business

Lastly, another small scale business that an entrepreneur who is looking towards making money from the business value chain in the travels and tourism industry should consider starting is the rental of scooters.

The travels and tourism industry indeed has a lot to offer. However, before you start, you have got to make it a point of duty to carry out all the necessary research that you would need to become the best in all that you do in no time at all.

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35+ creative travels and tour ideas for your tourism business

35+ tours and travels business ideas

By Kevin Tjoe — 7 Feb 2022

business ideas   customer experience   marketing

Updated August 2023 – Are you weary of the monotonous 9 to 5 routine or feeling confined to your desk on a glorious day? Whether you’re aiming to break free from the grind or seeking to elevate your tourism business to new heights, the realm of possibilities awaits. Within the vast expanse of the tourism industry lies the canvas for an incredible business venture. It’s not just about forging a lucrative business, but about channeling your passion into a travel-related venture that resonates with your know-how and aspirations.

Amidst this landscape of opportunities, the spark of a great business idea can set the stage for crafting a truly profitable business. If you’re prepared to infuse your love for experiences with strategic thinking, get ready to unveil over 35 exciting tours and travel business ideas in our latest compilation. Your journey toward a rewarding and unforgettable business experience begins here.

Getting into the tour operator industry

travel and tourism business ideas

The tourism industry is such a rewarding one to work in. As a tour or activity operator, you can spend your days with great people, share your special part of the world and even raise awareness of important cultural or environmental values.

Of course, even if you don’t directly run tours and activities there are many different ways to build an amazing career in tourism. You could run a travel-related business. For example, if you’re a travel photographer, you could run your own travel photography business. Some other type of business ideas are souvenir shops, hiking gear rentals, running a travel blog or becoming a travel blogger, or even providing catering for tour and activity operators.

Staying open-minded will help you find your ideal niche in the industry and help you achieve your goal of becoming an entrepreneur within the tourism space!

5 tourism business ideas to get started with

When you offer travel tours, you’re offering an enjoyable journey of some kindled by an experienced guide. Some of the hottest tours and travels business ideas right now include:

  • Walking tours and bike tours
  • Snorkeling tours
  • Tours that take into account growing wine and food tourism trends , such as Hideaway Private Tours , Black Swan Tours , Darwin Gourmet Tours , and Mullarkey Tours
  • Ghost or haunted location tours
  • Scenic guided tours, such as Italy Pass Tours , Wineglass Bay Discovery Tours, Meteora Thrones , and Bruny Island Safari

There may also be a gap in your local area for a niche tour guide business. For example: if your hometown was the birthplace of a famous musician or even a centuries-old famous cuisine, there could be a perfect opportunity to tap into that interest!

Keep in mind there are two big growth areas to consider when it comes to offering tours for the modern traveler:

  • Sustainable and ecotourism, because guests increasingly want to minimize their environmental impact when traveling. Find out more about proactive steps that sustainable tour operators can take here
  • Culturally and socially responsible tours , where guests look for a genuine experience connecting with local people and practices

2. Activities

Tourism activities can encompass a vast array of options from the relaxing to the extreme! These could involve physical activities, connection with natural environments, or even incorporate virtual reality. Unique experiences such as hot air balloon rides are also an option for relaxing activities that involve a thrilling side to them. You could also consider more recent technology that people might be itching to try out, such as jet boarding , flyboarding,  and indoor skydiving . There may also be an opportunity to offer intentionally tech-free experiences – such as a retreat with no mobile reception where people can unwind!

Here are some other popular tourist activity ideas:

  • Escape room experiences 
  • Glowing art rooms or VR rooms
  • Themed corporate retreats  or glamping
  • Modern summer camps or school camps
  • Survival or bushcraft trips
  • Fitness or wellbeing retreats

There are two big notable areas to consider for tour operator activities. Think about:

  • Activities that are family and group friendly , which are becoming popular within the travel industry as social restrictions ease.
  • Accessibility . Tourism business owners should be actively looking for ways to support equal access so everyone can enjoy their activities – as best as possible for the activity in question.

3. Attractions

As a travel software provider , we can say with certainty that experiential travel is huge right now. Considering that experiential tourist attractions have both local and long-distance appeal for travelers, they offer an impressive amount of opportunities for growing tourism businesses. These can range from heritage attractions and natural formations to cutting-edge art exhibitions.

tourism business ideas

Here are more relevant ideas for building an attraction that guests will be keen to visit:

  • Amusement parks 
  • Niche museums and art galleries
  • Festivals with amazing settings
  • Garden and maze experiences
  • Instagram-worthy photo rooms and experiences , such as Selfie Factory or Happy Place
  • Magic shows,  such as Gentleman Magician
  • Farms, petting zoos , and horse riding such as Sun Valley Mares and Swan Valley Wagon Tours

Nostalgia and retro appeal are also big right now in attractions, with everything from arcade games to Australia’s ‘ big things’ providing popular. Travelers are increasingly looking to explore the road less traveled and find novel experiences. So – even if you’re in a small regional area you could get in on the action by embracing the bizarre, weird, and wonderful!

4. Shuttles

As interstate and international travel resumes, there will be demand for airport transfers, shuttles , and unique transport options to and from accommodation. You might tap into the wedding transportation market, or offer fun journeys for birthdays, bachelor and bachelorette parties. Consider how you’ll separate your shuttle service from the rest with either a unique form of transport, added options like food and drink, or a distinctive driver who adds to the experience. You might consider offering:

  • An airport shuttle business
  • Traveler shuttles to accommodate tour and travel bookings
  • A party bus or ferry
  • Specialist pet or luggage delivery
  • Unique transport such as tuk-tuks, school buses, or a custom limo 
  • Premium shuttle services .

It’s also worth considering the notable events in your area and how people might want to travel to these. Guests may get excited about a festival bus that transports them from the city to the festival site complete with karaoke, as just one example!

5. Charters & equipment hire

Travelers love charter services because they can have a luxurious or far-flung experience without having to buy all the equipment or vehicles themselves! There are numerous forms of rental businesses you could run such as self-driven charters, car rentals, or equipment hire. You could even go a step further by providing an experienced skipper or pilot as part of the product package. Ideas for modern charter businesses include:

  • Party yachts for relaxed island days
  • Fishing charters 
  • Houseboat charters
  • Private river cruise charters
  • Hovercraft charters
  • Kayak,  rafting, small boat hire , or paddle board
  • Helicopter or small plane charters

tours and travel business ideas

For tour guides looking at how to run a charter boat business , it’s a great idea to promote the destination as well as the charter experience itself as the two go hand in hand.

A great charter experience is almost always about the escape from the everyday. It’s something guests are willing to splurge on, so be sure to consider ways you can elevate the experience. You can achieve this by offering optional extras and added services. If you are wondering how to sell tour packages with your charter service, extra bonuses like drink options, catering, entertainment, and DJs can help to boost your revenue.

6. Luxury vacation operators & Travel agency business

Guests love Luxury Vacations because they are money-rich but time-poor. They want to draw on the experience and expertise of their trusted travel agent or operator to discover the finest travel arrangements, boutique properties & off-the-beaten-track destinations. However, they may not have the time to research the thousands of options available to them. And because they may well only visit these destinations only once in their life and want to be sure they get the greatest possible experience. They’ll want the security of knowing they will be well looked after whilst visiting far-off countries with different languages and customs with which they are not familiar.

A great example of one such Luxury Vacation Operator is  The Luxury Peru Travel Company . Their services provide guests with a chance to discover one of the Seven Wonders of the World – Machu Picchu – in absolute luxury.

Building your tours and travels business ideas in the tour operator industry

If you have a brilliant business idea in mind, then you may be raring to put the wheels in motion. There will be a few things to think about as you build out your business idea, such as finding the best name for your business , developing your business plan , and deciding how you’ll take bookings securely online with real-time availability. One big advantage in the tourism industry is also the ability to partner with resellers , distributors, and other tourism and travel businesses to grow your bookings faster.

Rezdy supports you with both online bookings and a distribution platform  developed specifically for the experiences industry. We’re also here to support you as you start your business – simply register for your free 21-day trial or book a demo with the Rezdy team to see how we can help your business.

You can also explore our Resources section to find industry-specific guides across business operations, marketing, and more, with a range of free ebooks available to help you save time and increase your bookings. If you enjoyed this article – 35+ tours and travels business ideas – then make sure to follow the Rezdy blog . There are a lot of marketing tools and tour operator tips designed with businesses like yours in mind.

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12 Travel Business Ideas

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If there is one thing most people can agree on, it’s that traveling is one of life’s great pleasures. Exploring new cultures, visiting the world’s great wonders, spending days following your instincts and trying exotic foods — there’s a lot to love about discovering new places.

If you want to take your love of travel to the next level and start a business to serve your like-minded wanderlusters, you should consider these fun and profitable travel business ideas.

travel and tourism business ideas

What is a travel business?

There are two overarching types of travel businesses worth considering. First, you could think about starting a business that provides services or goods for travelers — running a hotel, for example. The second option is to start a business that you can run from anywhere in the world while you yourself travel. In many cases, this type of business revolves around travel, such as working as a travel writer and writing stories about your latest adventures.

What makes a travel business idea a good one?

A good travel business should combine two things: reliability and excitement. When you run a travel business, your clients need to be able to trust you. They need to feel confident that the tour group you run is legitimate and will show them the best sites. Or that the blog you run about the best inns on the east coast actually gives honest reviews.

At the same time, you need to offer services or create content that excites your customers. Introduce them to sights off the beaten path. Help them unwind and relax while on their vacation. Find a way to create trust amongst your customer base while offering them an experience they can’t find anywhere else.

How much do you need?

with Fundera by NerdWallet

We’ll start with a brief questionnaire to better understand the unique needs of your business.

Once we uncover your personalized matches, our team will consult you on the process moving forward.

12 travel business ideas for 2021

If you’re unsure of what type of travel business ideas could work for you, keep reading for some popular options. These ideas range widely and you should put your own creative spin on them. At the end of the day, think back to your passion for traveling. What services or products have made the most difference to you on past trips? What did you feel was missing? Can you find a way to make a living on the road while capitalizing on your skillset? Chances are, you have more ideas at the ready than you think.

1. Modernized bed and breakfast

B&Bs have been popular for decades — they outlive trends and are clearly here to stay. But why not step things up a notch and find a way to modernize the bed and breakfast experience a little bit? Make sure your rooms are outfitted with nice televisions so guests can enjoy a movie night in their cozy room. Offer unique culinary experiences. Decorate in a way that feels timeless but fresh at the same time. A bed and breakfast is a smaller operation than a hotel and is a great way to break into the hospitality business. If you need a little help funding your bed and breakfast, consider one of these financing options.

2. Off-the-beaten-path tour guide

Tour groups are a dime a dozen. But if you can offer a unique tour, you’ll be able to stand out from the competition. What do you love about your city? Maybe you can find the best coffee, chocolate, or salty treats at your local shops and restaurants. Organize a foodie tour of your town that highlights how your local delicacies are made. Of course, you’ll have to include tastes of all the local treats.

Or consider organizing a tour of some lesser-known sites. Surely there is a natural activity or historical site that tourists haven’t caught onto yet. If you can give your travelers a taste of local life or make them feel like they’ve uncovered something special, then your tour guide business will thrive. Maybe some locals will even join in on the fun.

3. Glamping

Here’s a fun fact for you: By 2025, experts estimate the glamping market in the United States alone is projected to reach a revenue of around $1 billion. It sounds like the great outdoors is getting a little fancier. What exactly is glamping? Glamorous camping.

Glamping combines nature with the comforts of home, and usually Champagne. That’s right, after a long day of hiking or river rafting, campers can return to decked-out campsites that offer spa treatments, wine and gourmet meals. The perfect combination of adventure and relaxation. If you can create a campsite that melds the best parts of nature with resort living, you’ll be in business.

4. Remote travel agent

Long gone are the days of travel agent offices. The truth is, thanks to the internet it’s easier than ever to plan a trip. Anyone with a computer can choose between hundreds of flights, hotels and restaurant reservations. The ease of access is great, but the time it takes to weed through those options might not be available to everyone. This is where a remote travel agent comes in.

You’ll work out of your own home which saves the customer costs on overhead expenses. For a more affordable price, remote travel agents can help busy travelers plan their next vacation from anywhere in the world. Help them book the best hotels, unique activities and provide them with all of their important travel bookings and documentation.

5. Travel consultant

Even though their job titles sound similar, a travel consultant is different than a travel agent. A travel consultant usually specializes in solving complex travel issues. For example, they may specialize in helping adoptive parents travel abroad to make the task of adopting a child from a foreign country run smoothly. Or they might assist businesses with complex assignments like learning how to cater to new cultures during business deals. Travel consultants generally focus less on tourism and more on helping iron out logistical issues.

6. Travel photographer

As a travel photographer, you’ll have plenty of options for making money off your passions for travel and photography. You can sell photos taken while traveling to newspapers, magazines and websites. Or you can sell your favorite shots in your own online shop. You could license your gorgeous photos of Paris or Peru to companies that create goods like calendars or art prints. Perhaps you want to help create stock photography for big companies like Getty Images. Point being, we live in a very visual world and there are plenty of options for starting a travel photography business.

7. Create a haunted attraction

Want a surefire way to make sure your hotel or guided tour drum up enough business? The solution is easy: Make it haunted. This may seem like a business better suited for Halloween time, but people are ready to get their scare on year-round. These haunted attractions do particularly well in historic locations like towns on the east coast where there are plenty of ghost stories to go around. Do some research and then let your imagination take care of the rest. You might want to load up on business insurance just in case your haunted attraction is too scary.

8. Teach cultural classes

It’s time to share your unique culture with the world. Offer fun classes for tourists that will make them feel like locals, whether that be a Creole cooking class or an art class that captures a local style of painting. Help tourists pick up a skill that they won’t learn anywhere else, like how to make an authentic cup of Turkish coffee or bake a truly Parisian croissant.

9. House or pet sitting

Sometimes a travel business does its best work when helping travelers look after what they left behind. House or pet sitting can be a great side hustle to take on if you’re looking for a little extra cash. Of course, you could always start a larger business like a kennel that takes care of beloved pets while their owners are jet-setting around the world. Some people are even willing to pay for plant hotels that keep their plants in tiptop shape until they return from vacation. Consider a travel business that will give your customers peace of mind while they are far from home.

10. Travel blogger

You’ve traveled the world and, boy, do you have some good stories to tell. So why don’t you then? By starting a travel blog, you can make money by sharing your experiences. You can offer up travel advice, share photos from your journey and review restaurants and hotels. Once your blog picks up some steam (aka gets a decent amount of pageviews and monthly visitors) you’ll be able to make money from ads hosted on your website, sign up for affiliate programs, or create sponsored content for brands. If this sounds like your ideal business, this guide can help you start a travel blog.

11. Ecotourism

Sustainability is all the rage right now and for good reason. It makes sense that those who value exploring the world want to keep it safe. Which is why ecotourism (also known as green tourism) is such a potentially profitable idea. Essentially, ecotourism allows travelers to learn about local culture and wildlife in a low-impact way.

Generally, these types of tours or services (like hotels) try to minimize the impact of traveling while giving tourists the education and tools to help positively impact the environment and community they visit. Many travelers are even willing to spend more on hotels if they are environmentally friendly. If you can find a way to show tourists a good time while helping them make a positive impact, you’re sure to have a popular business on your hands in no time.

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12. Home rentals

Do you have a gorgeous pool house just waiting to be turned into an oasis for weary travelers? Consider starting a home rental business. You can list any rooms in your house that are available to rent out (or even your entire house if you’re headed out of town yourself) on home rental websites like Airbnb or HomeAway. If you live in a popular area where hotels are particularly pricey, then you may be able to fetch a pretty penny by allowing customers to rent rooms in your home.

The best part is, you get to set your price. You only have to rent to people who can meet your price and who you think would be a good tenant (Hint: They need as many good reviews as you do). This can be an ideal business for bringing in extra money to help fund your next vacation. Just make sure that your town, apartment complex, or homeowners association allows you to rent out your property and that you’re following proper regulations.

This article originally appeared on JustBusiness, a subsidiary of NerdWallet.

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50 travel and tourism business ideas

50 Travel & Tourism Business Ideas

Introduction

Wanderlust! The urge to travel, explore new places, and experience different cultures is deeply rooted in the human spirit.

As the world becomes more interconnected, the travel and tourism industry continues to thrive, presenting numerous opportunities for entrepreneurial minds.

In this blog post, we’ll embark on an exciting journey, exploring 50 creative business ideas that cater to the ever-growing demand for unique and memorable travel experiences.

Accommodation

1. tiny house rentals.

Offer a unique and eco-friendly accommodation experience by renting out tiny houses in scenic locations. Tiny houses are not only charming but also appeal to travelers seeking a minimalist and sustainable lifestyle.

2. Glamping Retreats

Combine the luxury of a hotel with the adventure of camping by setting up glamorous camping sites in picturesque natural settings. Provide luxurious tents, high-end amenities, and personalized services for a one-of-a-kind outdoor experience.

3. Homestay Network

Create a platform that connects travelers with local hosts, allowing them to experience authentic cultural immersion by staying in a family’s home. This concept promotes cultural exchange and provides an affordable alternative to traditional accommodations.

4. Treehouse Resorts

Tap into the childlike wonder of tree-dwelling by constructing eco-friendly treehouse resorts. These unique accommodations offer guests a chance to reconnect with nature while enjoying modern amenities.

5. Houseboat Rentals

Capitalize on the growing trend of water-based accommodations by offering houseboat rentals in scenic waterways or coastal regions. Houseboats provide a unique way to explore destinations while enjoying the comforts of home.

Transportation

6. electric bike tours.

Offer eco-friendly and active tours of cities or natural landscapes using electric bikes. This concept appeals to travelers seeking sustainable and engaging ways to explore their destinations.

7. Luxury Coach Service

Provide a high-end transportation service for travelers seeking comfort and convenience. Offer luxurious coaches with amenities like Wi-Fi, entertainment systems, and gourmet snacks for long-distance travel or city tours.

8. Vintage Car Rentals

Cater to the nostalgia and charm of classic automobiles by offering vintage car rentals. This unique transportation option can be a hit with travelers seeking a retro experience or those attending special events.

9. Private Aviation Services

For affluent travelers, offer private aviation services, such as charter flights, helicopter tours, or private jet rentals, providing a luxurious and convenient way to travel.

10. Campervan Rentals

Capitalize on the growing trend of road trips and van life by offering campervan rentals. These versatile vehicles allow travelers to explore destinations at their own pace while enjoying the freedom and convenience of a mobile home.

Tours and Activities

11. virtual reality tours.

Leverage the power of virtual reality (VR) technology to offer immersive tours of destinations, historical sites, or even outer space. This innovative concept appeals to tech-savvy travelers and those seeking unique experiences.

12. Food Truck Tours

Combine the love for food and exploration by organizing tours that guide participants through the local food truck scene, sampling diverse culinary offerings along the way.

13. Experiential Workshops

Offer hands-on workshops that teach travelers new skills or crafts, such as pottery, painting, dance, or cooking classes, allowing them to immerse themselves in the local culture while acquiring new knowledge.

14. Adventure Sports Tours

For thrill-seekers, organize tours that incorporate adventure sports like rock climbing, zip-lining, surfing, or skydiving, catering to travelers seeking adrenaline-pumping experiences.

15. Sustainable Ecotours

Promote responsible tourism by offering sustainable eco-tours that educate travelers about conservation efforts and sustainable practices while exploring natural wonders and wildlife habitats.

Food and Beverage

16. pop-up dining experiences.

Create unique and temporary dining experiences by setting up pop-up restaurants in unconventional locations, such as rooftops, abandoned buildings, or scenic outdoor spaces.

17. Craft Brewery Tours

Tap into the growing popularity of craft beer by offering guided tours of local breweries, providing insights into the brewing process and allowing visitors to sample unique flavors.

18. Farm-to-Table Dining

Collaborate with local farmers to create a farm-to-table dining experience, offering fresh, locally sourced ingredients and promoting sustainable food practices.

19. Wine Tasting Tours

Organize tours that take visitors through local wineries, vineyards, and tasting rooms, providing an educational and indulgent experience for wine enthusiasts.

20. Street Food Tours

Guide travelers through the vibrant street food scene of a destination, introducing them to authentic local flavors and culinary traditions while exploring the city’s cultural fabric.

Retail and Souvenirs

21. artisan marketplace.

Curate a physical or online marketplace that showcases unique and handcrafted products from local artisans, providing travelers with authentic souvenirs and supporting local economies.

22. Sustainable Fashion Line

Tap into the growing demand for ethical and sustainable fashion by creating a clothing line using eco-friendly materials and promoting fair labor practices. Offer stylish and responsible travel apparel and accessories.

23. Personalized Photo Books

Offer a service that creates personalized photo books, allowing travelers to capture and preserve their journey’s memories in a beautifully curated keepsake.

24. Local Artisan Workshops

Organize workshops where travelers can learn from local artisans and create their own souvenirs, such as pottery, jewelry, or woodcarving, providing a hands-on experience and a unique keepsake.

25. Virtual Museum Tours

Leverage technology to offer virtual tours of museums, allowing travelers to explore exhibits and collections from anywhere in the world, catering to those seeking cultural experiences without the need for physical travel.

Technology and Apps

26. travel planning app.

Develop a comprehensive travel planning app that assists users in researching destinations, booking accommodations and activities, and creating personalized itineraries based on their preferences and interests.

27. Augmented Reality City Tours

Enhance the traditional city tour experience by incorporating augmented reality (AR) technology, overlaying historical information, interactive visuals, and storytelling elements onto the real-world environment.

28. Language Translation Earbuds

Offer innovative language translation earbuds that provide real-time translation, enabling travelers to communicate effectively and break down language barriers during their journeys.

29. Travel Insurance Comparison Platform

Create a user-friendly platform that compares and recommends the best travel insurance options based on specific trip details, destination, and traveler needs, ensuring peace of mind for adventurers.

30. Contactless Payments for Tourism

Develop a contactless payment solution specifically designed for the tourism industry, allowing travelers to make secure and convenient payments for attractions, tours, and services without the hassle of carrying cash or cards.

Wellness and Relaxation

31. yoga retreats.

Offer immersive yoga retreats in serene locations, combining physical and spiritual practices with healthy cuisine, meditation sessions, and access to natural surroundings for a holistic wellness experience.

32. Digital Detox Getaways

Create a sanctuary for travelers seeking to disconnect from technology and reconnect with themselves by offering digital detox getaways in remote or nature-focused destinations.

33. Spa and Wellness Resorts

Establish luxurious spa and wellness resorts that provide a tranquil escape, offering various treatments, fitness programs, and healthy dining options for travelers seeking rejuvenation and self-care.

34. Mindfulness Retreats

Organize mindfulness retreats that combine meditation, yoga, and other mindfulness practices with scenic locations and expert guidance, catering to travelers seeking inner peace and personal growth.

35. Forest Bathing Experiences

Capitalize on the growing interest in the Japanese practice of “Shinrin-yoku” or forest bathing by offering guided nature walks and immersive experiences that promote relaxation and connection with the natural world.

Sustainable Tourism

36. eco-friendly tour operator.

Establish an eco-friendly tour operator that prioritizes sustainability and minimizes the environmental impact of travel. Offer responsible tours that support local communities and promote conservation efforts.

37. Upcycled Lodging

Create unique accommodations by repurposing and upcycling materials from various sources, such as shipping containers, abandoned buildings, or recycled materials, promoting sustainable and innovative lodging options.

38. Carbon Offset Travel Services

Offer a service that calculates and offsets the carbon footprint of travelers’ trips by investing in verified carbon offset projects, appealing to environmentally conscious consumers.

39. Sustainable Souvenir Marketplace

Establish an online or physical marketplace that curates and sells sustainable souvenirs, locally made products, and ethical handicrafts, promoting responsible consumption and supporting local artisans.

40. Eco-Tourism Consultancy

Provide consulting services to travel companies and destinations, helping them implement sustainable practices, reduce their environmental impact, and promote responsible tourism initiatives.

Niche Experiences

41. pet-friendly travel services.

Cater to pet owners by offering pet-friendly accommodations, activities, and travel services, allowing furry companions to accompany their owners on adventures.

42. Accessible Travel Solutions

Create travel solutions that cater to individuals with disabilities or special needs, offering accessible accommodations, transportation, and tailored experiences that ensure comfort and inclusion.

43. Genealogy Tourism

Tap into the growing interest in ancestry and family history by offering genealogy tourism services, assisting travelers in tracing their roots, visiting ancestral homelands, and connecting with their heritage.

44. Dark Tourism Experiences

For those interested in the macabre and historical tragedies, offer curated tours and experiences focused on dark tourism sites, such as battlefields, cemeteries, and sites of significant historical events.

45. Culinary Immersion Tours

Organize in-depth culinary immersion tours that go beyond traditional food tours, allowing travelers to fully immerse themselves in the local food culture, from farm visits to cooking classes and dining with local families.

46. Literary Tours

Create literary-themed tours that take book lovers on a journey through the settings of famous novels, visiting locations that inspired authors, and exploring the literary heritage of destinations.

47. Spiritual Pilgrimage Tours

Offer guided tours to sacred sites and spiritual destinations, catering to travelers seeking personal growth, spiritual enlightenment, or a deeper connection with their faith or beliefs.

48. Astro-Tourism Experiences

Capitalize on the growing interest in astronomy and stargazing by offering astro-tourism experiences, including dark sky observatories, guided night sky tours, and stargazing retreats in remote locations with minimal light pollution.

49. Adventure Wedding Services

Cater to adventurous couples by offering unique and memorable wedding experiences in stunning outdoor locations, such as beach ceremonies, mountain elopements, or adventurous honeymoon packages.

50. Gaming and Esports Tourism

Tap into the rapidly growing gaming and esports industry by offering tailored travel experiences for gaming enthusiasts, including attending major gaming events, visiting gaming-themed attractions, or participating in gaming-related activities and competitions.

  • The travel and tourism industry offers a wealth of opportunities for entrepreneurs to tap into unique niches and cater to diverse traveler interests.
  • From accommodation options like tiny houses and treehouses to experiential tours and sustainable tourism initiatives, the possibilities are endless.
  • Technology plays a crucial role, enabling virtual reality tours, augmented reality city experiences, and innovative travel planning apps.
  • Wellness and relaxation-focused offerings, such as yoga retreats and mindfulness getaways, cater to travelers seeking rejuvenation and self-care.
  • Niche experiences like pet-friendly travel, accessible tourism, and dark tourism experiences cater to specialized interests and needs.
  • Sustainable and eco-friendly practices are becoming increasingly important, with opportunities in eco-tourism consultancy, upcycled lodging, and carbon-offset travel services.

Q: What are some unique accommodation ideas for travelers? A: Tiny house rentals, glamping retreats, treehouse resorts, and houseboat rentals offer unique and memorable accommodation experiences for travelers seeking something out of the ordinary.

Q: How can technology enhance the travel experience? A: Technology can enhance the travel experience through virtual reality tours, augmented reality city experiences, language translation earbuds, travel planning apps, and contactless payment solutions for tourism.

Q: What are some sustainable tourism business ideas? A: Sustainable tourism business ideas include eco-friendly tour operators, upcycled lodging, carbon offset travel services, sustainable souvenir marketplaces, and eco-tourism consultancy services.

Q: What are some niche travel experiences that cater to specific interests? A: Niche travel experiences include pet-friendly travel services, accessible tourism solutions, genealogy tourism, dark tourism experiences, culinary immersion tours, literary tours, spiritual pilgrimage tours, astro-tourism experiences, adventure wedding services, and gaming and esports tourism.

Q: How can wellness and relaxation be incorporated into travel business ideas? A: Wellness and relaxation can be incorporated through yoga retreats, digital detox getaways, spa and wellness resorts, mindfulness retreats, and forest bathing experiences, catering to travelers seeking rejuvenation and self-care.

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Small Business Trends

15 innovative travel business ideas for aspiring entrepreneurs.

travel business ideas

As the world finally opens up for business, the beleaguered travel industry is getting its groove back. Not surprisingly, this is attracting a number of small business owners to explore travel business ideas.

What Are Travel Businesses?

Travel businesses primarily revolve around providing diverse services that facilitate and enhance the experience of traveling.

These services can range from arranging lodging accommodations, vehicle rentals for transportation, curated excursions, and immersive activities that allow travelers to deeply engage with the local culture.

While the travel sector primarily focuses on the logistics of transportation and lodging, it deeply intertwines with the broader tourism industry.

Together, they aim to create memorable experiences for tourists, catering to their varied preferences and ensuring a smooth journey from start to finish.

READ MORE: Build A Travel Business You Can Sell With These 5 Tips

travel business ideas

Be sure to check out Income Hub’s article, “7 Travel Business Ideas Trending With Low Startup Costs,” after you’re done reading:

The Travel and Hospitality Industry

The unanticipated global pandemic wreaked havoc on the travel and tourism sector. Consequently, and for a prolonged two-year period, businesses worldwide faced unprecedented challenges as international and domestic movements came to an almost complete standstill.

However, there’s renewed optimism that this is the year the industry will make a triumphant comeback. The continued prevalence of flexible working arrangements has given birth to a new category of travelers – those combining work with leisure.

Responding to this change, the travel industry is innovating to integrate work-friendly environments, such as co-working spaces within hotels or resorts.

Furthermore, a significant shift towards sustainable travel is becoming increasingly evident. Today’s travelers are not just satisfied with basic eco-friendly initiatives. They are actively seeking out holistic, sustainable travel experiences.

This encompasses everything from choosing accommodations that practice waste reduction, opting for transportation methods with a smaller carbon footprint, to prioritizing dining options that serve vegan dishes and use locally-sourced ingredients.

travel business ideas

Why You Should Consider Starting Your Own Business In Travel

travel business ideas - woman using her laptop to work in the travel industry in her home office

From a commercial standpoint, this is perhaps the best time to start your own business in travel.

Let’s take a look at the factors that make this a lucrative business opportunity.

  • Potential to earn more: As traveling regains popularity, there are abundant opportunities to increase your income.
  • Choose your domain: Another great thing about starting a travel-related business is you have plenty of options to explore. For example, you may choose to specialize in a domain such as travel photography or travel consulting based on your interest.
  • Do without an office: Thanks to digitalization, a number of small travel businesses have gone completely online. This saves these online business owners both time and money.
  • Partner with other service providers: As a business owner in this sector, you don’t have to venture out alone. You can easily tie up with other service providers and offer a better deal to your customers.
  • Low startup cost: Many small businesses prefer the travel industry because of the low startup cost. Depending on the scale you have in mind, you can keep your business profitable.

READ MORE: Small Business Ideas for Beginners

Our Methodology to Choose the Best Travel Business Ideas

When exploring travel business ideas, it’s crucial to choose concepts that are not only viable in the current travel market but also resonate with the entrepreneur’s interests and capabilities. Here’s the methodology we used to evaluate potential travel business opportunities:

Market Demand and Travel Trends (Rating: 9/10)

Assessing the current and emerging trends in the travel industry was our starting point. We focused on business ideas that cater to popular travel trends, such as eco-tourism, adventure travel, or luxury experiences.

Niche Market Opportunities (Rating: 8/10)

We looked for niches within the travel sector that offer unique opportunities. This includes specialized tour services, niche accommodation options, or catering to specific traveler demographics.

Low Initial Investment and Overhead (Rating: 7/10)

Considering the startup costs and ongoing operational expenses was crucial. We prioritized travel business ideas that require minimal initial investment and have manageable overhead costs.

Flexibility and Lifestyle Fit (Rating: 8/10)

The travel industry often allows for flexibility in terms of operation. We selected ideas that can adapt to the entrepreneur’s lifestyle, whether they seek full-time engagement or part-time involvement.

Profitability and Revenue Streams (Rating: 8/10)

Evaluating the potential for profit and diverse revenue streams was key. We looked for travel business ideas with a clear path to profitability, including opportunities for ancillary services and upselling.

Scalability and Expansion Potential (Rating: 7/10)

The potential for scaling and expanding the business was another important factor. We considered travel business ideas that can grow over time, either through geographical expansion, franchising, or diversifying services.

Personal Passion and Expertise (Rating: 8/10)

Finally, aligning the business with personal interests and expertise in travel is vital. We focused on ideas that match the entrepreneur’s passion for travel, enhancing their dedication and satisfaction.

By applying these criteria, we aimed to identify travel business ideas that not only promise profitability and market relevance but also align with the entrepreneur’s passion for travel and lifestyle preferences.

Popular Travel Business Ideas

Today, the travel business goes beyond setting up an agency. Thanks to customers who continue to look for better options, there are a number of profitable travel business ideas. Let’s explore some of these in detail.

1. Tour Guide Business

travel business ideas - tour guide showing customers the sights

This is the ideal business idea if you don’t have the capital to invest in your business – at least not in the initial phase. To succeed, you should have knowledge about the location where you operate. You should also be based in a place that draws enough travelers.

2. Bed and Breakfast Business

If you want to turn your home into a business location, a bed and breakfast is the right option for you. To make it popular with many travelers, you need to offer a truly great experience. This includes having a real passion for hosting different people and making them feel comfortable during their stay.

3. Car Rental Business

Many travelers rely on cars to move around when they travel. For this reason, a car rental is the most obvious choice for many of these travelers. If you have experience with automobiles and their maintenance, this business can work for you.

4. Scooter Rental Business

Many leisure travelers prefer using scooters, especially when the weather is great outdoors. To be able to start this business, you should have at least 3-4 scooters. You should also have in-depth knowledge about scooters.

travel business idea scooter rental

5. Travel Photography Business

If solopreneurship is your calling, starting a travel photography company is one of the obvious choices. As a travel photographer, you have the flexibility and freedom to travel, take pictures and make money. Moreover, if you’re truly talented, you can make a lot of money through the various stock photography websites.

6. Translation services

Another popular option for those who want to run their business independently is translation services. And this skill will come in handy when you are contending with customers coming from the outside. As such, your ability to converse fluently in more than one language is especially useful when you are in a busy town that sees a lot of travelers.

7. Medical Tourism

In recent years, medical tourism has become widely popular in various parts of the world. In addition to the modern medical sciences, many people are interested in holistic, traditional treatment options. It goes without saying you need to have the right credentials to be able to start this lucrative business.

8. Adventure Trips

Adventure tourism is a niche within the travel industry. Extremely popular with young people, it is a great service-based business. Generally, you will have to gain experience and credentials to start this type of business.

9. Event Planning

travel business ideas - event planning

Another business model that pays pretty well is corporate event planning. As an event planner, you will be responsible for designing unique corporate events. Be that as it may, this is not a one-person business. You will need a personal assistant and some extra manpower to succeed.

10. Travel Blogging

Making money through their travel blog is a full-time job for a number of travelers. Therefore, if you have the passion to write and document your adventures, you can turn yourself into a social media influencer. Of course, competition on social media platforms is quite fierce, but with good content, you can easily stand out.

travel business idea

More Great Ideas for Traveling Businesses

With several options to choose from, zeroing in on the best travel business idea may seem challenging. The trick is to focus on where your passion truly lies. Let’s explore some more ideas for your business.

11. Coffee Shop

Travelers all over the world need coffee to keep themselves energized. A coffee shop, therefore, is a great idea to attract a client base. Your choice of location will matter greatly when you set up your shop.

12. Glamping Business

travel business ideas - lit up glamping tents at campsite

Glamping brings glamor to the fun outdoor activity of camping. The idea is to create a sophisticated ambiance for campers. Of course, you need a great location and the right services in place to succeed with this.

13. Kayak Tours

Many adventurous travelers enjoy kayaking. But since bringing a kayak is often not an option for them, they have to rely on local businesses. Fortunately, this is where you can make a difference and make money through adventure sports.

14. Water Taxi Service

travel business ideas - water taxi

Depending on the location, you can offer water taxi services to your customers. This business requires you to make a small capital investment.

15. Travel Agency

Setting up an agency is a great idea if you have the adequate knowledge and manpower to cater to your customer demands. Meanwhile, if you lack the manpower, you can work as an independent operator or partner with a major travel company.

READ MORE: How to Start a Travel Agency

travel business ideas

Comparison of Popular Travel Business Ideas

To better assist aspiring entrepreneurs in selecting a suitable travel business venture, we’ve compiled a table that compares various business ideas based on their startup capital requirement and potential profitability:

Technological Adaptations in the Travel Business Landscape

As the travel industry continues to evolve, it is undeniable that technology-driven innovations are at the forefront of this transformation. From the emergence of smart hotels and immersive AR/VR experiences to the convenience of contactless solutions and the precision of AI-powered personalization, travelers are witnessing a revolution that promises a more seamless and efficient journey.

Here’s a closer look at some of these cutting-edge advancements :

  • Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality Tours: While VR provides an immersive experience where users feel like they are in a different location, AR enhances real-world views by overlaying them with digital elements, such as historical information or interactive exhibits. Both these tools allow potential travelers to explore and interact with a location or accommodation before making a booking, offering an enriched pre-travel experience.
  • Contactless Technology : Given the hygiene concerns post-pandemic, the adoption of contactless payments, check-ins, and digital room keys has increased, ensuring safety and convenience for travelers.
  • AI-Powered Personalization : To enhance customer experience, businesses are increasingly leveraging Artificial Intelligence. AI tools analyze past travel behaviors to recommend tailor-made travel packages, ensuring a more personalized journey for each traveler.
  • Environmental Monitoring Tools : With the rising emphasis on sustainable travel, some innovative platforms now offer real-time data on the environmental impact of travel choices. This can cover carbon footprints, energy consumption, and waste production, allowing travelers to make more informed, eco-friendly decisions.
  • Mental Well-being Focus : Recognizing the pandemic’s toll on mental health, travel packages often include mindfulness and wellness components. Retreats, yoga sessions, and mental well-being workshops are becoming popular inclusions in travel itineraries.
  • Smart Hotels: The concept of “Smart Hotels” encompasses automated room settings, robot-assisted services, integrated mobile apps, energy efficiency systems, and personalized guest experiences, revolutionizing the stay experience for travelers.

travel business ideas

How Do You Start Your Own Travel Business?

Launching a travel business begins with a concrete vision and a meticulously detailed business plan. It’s pivotal to understand that while some niches in the travel segment might be lucrative, they may also demand a considerable initial financial outlay.

Thus, potential entrepreneurs should thoroughly evaluate their financial standing and possibly gravitate towards business models that are more budget-friendly, especially if initial capital is a concern.

Beyond finances, it’s crucial to introspect and understand the intrinsic motivations pushing one towards this industry.

Is it a passion for travel, an interest in other cultures, or the thrill of entrepreneurship? Recognizing this driving force can guide the business’s direction and ethos.

Image: Envato Elements

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Start » business ideas, 10 travel and hospitality business ideas.

As travelers contemplate comfortable new ways to satisfy their wanderlust, opportunity awaits for entrepreneurs who offer safe, fun and authentic experiences and services.

 A group of seven friends sit on an orange picnic blanket outside, with a scenic valley in the background and trees strung with lights overhead. In front of the group are glasses of wine, a couple of lanterns, a charcuterie board, and mason jars filled with a golden beverage. Each member of the group holds up a lit sparkler.

With barriers easing, both literally and figuratively, many travelers are in the planning stages of long-awaited reunions, getaways and adventures. For some pleasure-seekers, their post-pandemic plans look very different than they did before. Travel is an industry that has been significantly reshaped , with experiences and expectations now looking vastly different.

With comfort and confidence levels rising anew, all signs point to opportunity for those looking to start a small, travel-related business and parlay their savvy of the tourism scene with a side of next-level hospitality. The sky’s the limit, and these 10 ideas are great starting points for entrepreneurs of various interests and levels of expertise.

Bed-and-breakfast owner

In the current climate, many travelers are road-tripping it to smaller, more quaint destinations, seeking accommodations with a certain charm, character and personal approach to hospitality...and safety. The $3.4 billion bed-and-breakfast industry checks all the boxes and presents a great opportunity for those looking for a way into the tourism landscape without leaving home. Once you’ve established that you are someone who loves hosting and spending time with others, you will need a residence with enough space to create private accommodations for guests, ideally each with their own bathrooms. The more rooms you have to offer, the greater the income potential. B&B ownership also means a significant upfront investment , from securing permits to building out guest rooms, buying furnishings and essentials and accounting for kitchen upgrades and food needs. Sustainability, farm-to-table or plant-based menus and local cooking classes are some of the ways some bed-and-breakfast hosts are creating a point of difference in their market.

Glamping host

Perhaps you don’t have the indoor square footage and blueprints to create bed-and-breakfast accommodations, but you do possess the gift of great hospitality, live in a desirable destination and have an enviable backyard or are near a special natural setting. You could have the makings of a glamping business. Glamping is elevated camping, with upgraded accommodations, from luxurious tents to more unique structures , and an emphasis on comfort and amenities like access to bathrooms, fire pits, cookware to facilitate meal prep...and maybe even an outdoor pizza oven. Glamping is a form of travel gaining in appeal among couples, groups of friends and families, with market forecasts expecting that it will reach $1.88 billion in revenue this year. Before you jump in, make sure to secure all necessary permits for your location. Once you’re ready for visitors, post swoon-worthy photos on social media and all the details on booking sites like Airbnb , Glamping Hub , Cool Camping and Hip Camp .

Private tour guide

If you live in or near a sought-after town or city and love to share everything there is to know (including its best-kept secrets) with others, offering up your knowledge and passion as a private tour guide could be rewarding and profitable. You can essentially set your own schedule, create an experience that is unlike any other in your area and customize tours based on traveler preferences and interests. Building relationships with cool local businesses can be a great way to give tourists an insider’s perspective and support the community. Get your feet wet with the built-in audience and fulfillment support of platforms like ToursByLocals , which connects travelers with private local guides for a percentage of each booking. Build your business by posting tour details on local Facebook groups as well as groups targeted to visitors to your area.

Travel blogger

Travel bloggers have become a trusted source for inspiration, advice and recommendations for those dreaming about or planning trips. These bloggers document their research and experiences, often in great detail, through captivating writing and images that command the attention of travelers—and the advertisers and content providers who want to reach them. Having a niche (like sustainable travel, solo travel or last-minute getaways), a unique voice and great insider tips on local hot spots or ways to save time and money are key. Building a profitable business out of your passion means a lot of relationship building and marketing to integrate affiliate links , content sponsorships and advertising, plus becoming part of the select few that are offered paid travel to write about a locale or hotel. You can also generate income by charging a fee for travel photographers to curate your site with their images, crediting them and linking back to their online galleries. As a starting point, it’s a good idea to spend time on the leading travel blogs to gain insight and best practices.

A background in tourism or hospitality can be a plus, as is niche expertise in a particular city or region.

Tourism and hospitality translator

If you’re fluent in multiple languages, able to not only speak, but write, with creativity, proficiency and ease, there are tour operators, hotels, restaurants and many other travel-related businesses that may be in need of your skills. From websites to brochures to menus, inclusivity is key to welcoming travelers who want to understand the food, art, attractions and culture of their chosen destination without language being a major barrier. As a translator, you can help businesses of all sizes create dynamic digital and traditional communications that assist their foreign customers and create lasting, positive experiences. You can also offer in-person services as a translator for hotel guests in need of an interpreter for tours, business meetings or social engagements.

Photographer

Photographers in the travel space are skilled at capturing the best or most interesting attributes of a destination, its people and its culture. Photography is an exciting profession for those who have mastered the makings of a great shot from angles to lighting and have the equipment, flexibility and adventurous spirit to deliver wonder and a sense of the world through images. Travel photography is not limited to one style or category. It is a field with many different specialties . The key is aligning your passion and talent with opportunities in the marketplace, such as photography for marketing materials, web content or selling your images as prints. An attention-worthy digital portfolio , a social media presence and positive reviews are all key drivers of photography business success.

Local cooking classes

Love to cook and get rave reviews for your culinary skills? Know some recipes that capture the flavors of your hometown, city or region? Why not consider hosting cooking classes marketed to travelers and visitors looking for something special and authentic to do during their adventure? Culinary tourism is on the rise as more and more people crave travel that exposes them to exciting food and drink experiences. An off-the-beaten-track invitation to participate in preparing local flavors in the comfort of a home kitchen is a very intimate, special and unique opportunity. Offer a menu of local favorites while sharing stories and anecdotes that captivate. Make sure to know and fulfill any licensing requirements that exist in your town.

Vehicle rental

The current automotive shortage has trickled down to rental cars, with lack of availability amid increased demand driving up prices considerably. With no sign of the shortage abating, those with a spare set of wheels can be of great value to out-of-town travelers in need of a way to get around. You can establish your own rental business, adding the vehicles of nearby friends and neighbors to your fleet, but you’ll want to first test-drive the idea through one of the popular peer-to-peer platforms already up and running, like Turo and Getaround . These apps have the ability to pre-screen applicants to weed out those with a record of past major accidents or frequent violations and also protect car owners with a $1 million insurance policy—all important elements to consider and have in place.

Souvenir shop

Travelers rarely return home without bearing gifts for others and something for themselves to remember their travels. In fact, the souvenir and novelty market is expected to grow by nearly $12 billion between 2021 and 2025. Sadly, the reality is that touristy gift shops are a dime a dozen, turning out factory-made T-shirts and trinkets and lacking the authenticity that many travelers seek. If you live in an area rich in history and culture and have experience in sales, explore the possibility of opening up a gift shop featuring and supporting local artisans. Sourcing items can be a challenge; however, Etsy is a great platform for identifying creators who live in your area and may have crafts and wares with a wow factor. Local restaurants with their own lines of bottled or packaged foods are another good area to explore.

Travel concierge service

If you are well-traveled, highly resourceful, well-connected and hyper-focused on life’s little details, you can put your knowledge and skills to good use as a personal or corporate travel concierge. A travel concierge attends to every aspect of their clients’ travels, from arranging transportation and dining reservations to accessing premium event tickets and booking tours, attractions and unique experiences. A background in tourism or hospitality can be a plus, as is niche expertise in a particular city or region. For instance, establishing yourself as an expert in all things Paris or focusing on tours for wine enthusiasts can help make you more marketable and focus your marketing efforts accordingly. The key to success is to make travel smooth, safe, memorable and authentic for your clients and elicit positive reviews through word-of-mouth and on well-trafficked travel sites and social media groups.

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CO—is committed to helping you start, run and grow your small business. Learn more about the benefits of small business membership in the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, here .

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10+ Best & Profitable Travel Business Ideas [2023]

Nick

By Nick Cotter Updated Feb 07, 2024

Image of travel business ideas

Our List of 10+ Best Travel Business Ideas:

Tour guide business, bed and breakfast, concierge service, airport transfer service, group and individual travel planning, travel photography business, cruise agency, adventure travel business, specialty travel agency, incentive travel business.

Imagine this: you're lounging on a sun-kissed beach, tropical drink in hand, all while your bank account keeps growing. Sounds like a dream, right? Well, welcome to the exciting world of travel business! As we look forward to 2023, the opportunities in this sector are not only abundant but also incredibly profitable.

Whether you're a seasoned entrepreneur looking for your next venture, or a travel enthusiast who wants to turn passion into profit, you're in the right place. We've scoured the globe (virtually, of course!) and hand-picked 10+ of the best and most profitable travel business ideas that are set to take off in 2023.

Get ready to embark on a journey of discovery, inspiration, and potentially, financial freedom. Remember, every great journey begins with a single step. So, buckle up and let's dive into the world of travel entrepreneurship!

A tour guide business is an ideal business opportunity for those who have a deep understanding of the local area and a passion for sharing this knowledge with others. Tour guides offer customised guided tours, often focusing on the attractions, culture, and history of a particular region. This type of business offers many advantages:

  • Ability to work flexible hours
  • Opportunity to explore your community
  • Opportunity to meet interesting people
  • A chance to make money from something you love doing
  • Opportunities to network with other businesses in the local community.

image of a Tour Guide Business

A bed and breakfast (or B&B) is a type of accommodation with a unique, local appeal. Guests stay in the host’s house, and are typically served breakfast in the morning. It is an ideal business idea for anyone looking to become an entrepreneur in the travel industry, as it provides an intimate service for guests looking for a more homey atmosphere than what a hotel might offer.

  • No large-scale service required
  • Can be run from home or rental property
  • Relatively low start-up costs
  • Beloved by travelers, who often come back year after year
  • Can create additional income by adding amenities such as local tours or services

image of ZenBusiness logo

Examples of successful businesses:

The travel business industry has many successful companies that provide services to customers both domestically and internationally. Some examples of successful companies in the travel business industry are listed below.

  • Marriott International
  • TripAdvisor

A Concierge service is a company that provides customers with personal assistance for their everyday needs. This could include errand-running, grocery shopping, pet-sitting, house cleaning, restaurant reservations and other day-to-day services. It is an ideal business idea as it has much potential for growth and can be tailored to the customer’s individual needs. Some advantages of a Concierge service include:

  • Reasonable cost: prices can be kept at a minimum by charging high-value customers more than the average customer.
  • Flexible hours: With a Concierge service, you will always have time to cater to your clients as you can choose which hours you work.
  • Wide range of services: The range of services you offer will depend on your area and the level of expertise needed by customers.
  • Add value to other businesses: You can add value to other businesses such as hotels, gyms and real estate agencies by providing them with an extra layer of customer service.

More resources:

An airport transfer service is a business providing transportation services to and from airports. It can be a popular and profitable venture for those looking to enter the market. Airport transfer services offer customers convenience, reliability, and safety when travelling to or from an airport. Some of the benefits of starting an airport transfer service include:

  • Flexibility - You can choose your own hours and pick up clients when it fits your schedule.
  • Income potential - Charging clients a fee for the use of the service can bring in profitable income.
  • No prior investments necessary - You don't need to own a car or have any equipment to start running an airport transfer service.
  • Opportunities for growth - With an increasing demand for this type of service, there can be potential for growth.

Group and individual travel planning is an excellent business idea to help people plan their trips. With the right resources and expertise, this could be a great investment of time and money. Some of the benefits of travel planning include:

  • Help save money and time when planning a trip
  • Understand complex logistics involved with transportation, accommodations, activities, etc.
  • Assistance in navigating cultural requirements for different destinations or types of trips
  • Provide guidance for special needs travelers or group travelers
  • A convenient way to plan an entire trip from start to finish

Related business ideas:

Travel photography is a business focused on capturing memories of people’s trips and vacations. It can involve taking photographs of landscapes, monuments, cityscapes and other places of interest. It can also involve taking photos of people during their travels, such as posing in front of famous sights or experiencing the local culture. There are many reasons why travel photography would make a good business idea:

  • It provides a unique service to travelers
  • It requires minimal overhead costs
  • It has the potential to earn significant income
  • It provides an interesting and exciting job
  • It provides flexible working hours

A cruise agency is a business that specializes in coordinating and booking cruises for customers. It can provide services such as helping customers select their desired itinerary, accommodation, and other amenities. Cruise agencies have become increasingly popular in recent years due to the growth of the cruise industry, making it a great business idea.

  • Advantage of Scale: Cruise agencies can purchase bulk quantities of cruise tickets at wholesale prices, which gives them access to discounts that individual customers cannot get.
  • Wide Customer Base: Cruise agencies can offer customized packages to a wide variety of customers, including families, individuals, and groups.
  • Investment Portfolio: By offering cruises from various cruise lines, cruise agencies can increase their earnings by diversifying their investment portfolio.
  • Expertise: Cruise agencies have access to experienced staff with in-depth knowledge of the cruise industry which allows them to provide customers with better service.

Adventure travel business involves providing travelers with exciting and unique experiences that are usually focused on exploration and discovery. Adventure trips can include activities such as trekking, mountaineering, safaris, white-water rafting, bird watching and other outdoor activities. Such businesses can make a good business idea, as they offer the opportunity to make money while helping people to experience adventure and explore nature.

  • Adventure travel businesses are a rapidly growing market due to increased interest in exploring different countries and cultures.
  • Adventure trips can be tailored to meet the interests of each traveler, so they can be very cost effective.
  • Adventure travel businesses have a wide range of potential customers including backpackers, families, and corporate groups.
  • The industry is constantly evolving with new technology and opportunities for travelers
  • The business model is highly scalable; companies can quickly ramp up operations to accommodate changing market demand.

A Specialty travel agency is a business that specializes in selling customized, niche travel experiences. These specialized trips can be tailored to a variety of interests and needs - from adventure-filled backpacking trips to luxury vacations. They offer an opportunity for travelers to experience the world in a more unique and individualized way.

  • Custom Travel Packages - A specialty travel agency can create unique and tailored packages for any traveler.
  • Expert Knowledge - Specialty travel agents know the ins and outs of their area of specialization. They can provide valuable insight into the nuances of each destination.
  • VIP Service - Specialty travel agencies often provide exclusive access and advantages not available to regular travelers.
  • Cost Savings - By booking through a specialty travel agency, travelers can save money due to the expertise and network of contacts the agency has established.

Incentive travel business is the practice of providing people with rewards for reaching set goals or for promoting certain products or services. Incentive travel packages can be tailored to an individual's needs and can include a range of rewards from free tickets to international trips. Incentive travel is a great business idea because:

  • It encourages loyalty and performance within companies
  • It increases engagement and productivity
  • It strengthens relationships between clients and partners
  • It provides unique opportunities to employees and customers alike
  • It can be customized to fit any budget

More helpful resources about LLCs:

I'm Nick, co-founder of newfoundr.com, dedicated to helping aspiring entrepreneurs succeed. As a small business owner with over five years of experience, I have garnered valuable knowledge and insights across a diverse range of industries. My passion for entrepreneurship drives me to share my expertise with aspiring entrepreneurs, empowering them to turn their business dreams into reality.

Through meticulous research and firsthand experience, I uncover the essential steps, software, tools, and costs associated with launching and maintaining a successful business. By demystifying the complexities of entrepreneurship, I provide the guidance and support needed for others to embark on their journey with confidence.

From assessing market viability and formulating business plans to selecting the right technology and navigating the financial landscape, I am dedicated to helping fellow entrepreneurs overcome challenges and unlock their full potential. As a steadfast advocate for small business success, my mission is to pave the way for a new generation of innovative and driven entrepreneurs who are ready to make their mark on the world.

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StartupDailyTips

Startup News, and Inspiration for Entrepreneurs

Top 10 Innovative Travel and Tourism Business ideas

posted on 01/01/2022

Because there are several components that influence the operations of the travel and tourist industry both directly and indirectly, business opportunities abound. Travel and tourism industries include airlines, hotels, resorts, auto rentals, money changers, travel agents, tourist entertainment, and shopping.. If you want to start a business in travel, hospitality, or tourism, here are ten excellent yet innovative business ideas to consider.

Adventure tourism

Tourist participation in adventure activities is referred to as “adventure tourism.” It should come as no surprise that the greatest sites for adventure tourism enterprises offer a suitable atmosphere for a variety of adventurous activities such as mountaineering, trekking, river rafting, golfing, and so on.

Medical tourism

As the internet has made communication simpler, medical tourism has grown in popularity—medical tourism deals with scheduling vacations at lower prices for those who fly overseas for medical care. The allure of medical tourism is that it may be done while on vacation.

Travel agency

While medical tourism is aimed at specialized markets, a general travel agency can be a profitable public-facing business. A travel agency is responsible for making necessary arrangements for travelers, such as booking airline tickets and hotel rooms.

Boutique hotel 

Nowadays, many tourists prefer to stay in boutique hotels and youth hostels rather than large hotel chains. According to Christine Sarkis, the reasons that drive travelers to stay in boutique hotels are their lower cost and convenience when compared to hotel chains. With this in mind, you could construct a boutique hotel with 6-12 rooms in your local destination.

Corporate travel management 

Corporations, professionals, executives, and frequent travelers benefit from business travel management, also known as corporate travel management. Among the advantages are customized travel solutions, subsidized airfare, hotel accommodations, and any other service that completes a business trip.

Travel photography

One of the most interesting business opportunities in the travel and tourism industry is travel photography. The route is challenging, but if everything goes well, this can be a wealthy enterprise.

Bed and breakfast

Unlike most hotels, which have fifty, sixty, or even more guest rooms, you can start a 6- to the 10-room building to offer bed and breakfast to visitors in your tourist town.

Fastfood kiosk 

Unlike restaurants that take a long time to bring food to the table, fast food kiosks are quick, convenient, and fully self-serving. As a result, most tourists choose to dine at them these days, making launching a fast-food kiosk near a tourist site an attractive possibility.

Travel consultant

Despite the fact that the rise of internet portals has had a huge impact on travel consultants’ profession over the years, we do not believe they are no longer important. They are still in high demand today. As a result, if you’ve traveled before, you might want to explore becoming a travel consultant.

Become a translator 

The bulk of the time, tourists seek the help of interpreters in order to grasp the strange languages spoken in the area. If you wish to own a language translation company, you must be able to communicate in English, Spanish, and other related languages.

About Becky Holton

This Guide is brought to you by Becky Holton who is a journalist and a blogger. She teaches and trains budding entrepreneurs on various startup aspects.

44 Travel & Tourism Business Opportunities You Can Start Today

We put together 44 potential business ideas you can build around the tourism industry !

Check out the list.

1. Build an iPhone app

The iPhone is the most popular mobile device in the world. It has changed how we interact with information, entertainment, and communication.

The iPhone has also changed the way we interact with each other. Since its release in 2007, it has become a staple in most people’s lives. It is more than just a phone; it is a tool for staying connected to friends and family and creating new connections.

The iPhone app market is an ever-changing landscape of innovation: it’s not just about making something that works well; it’s about creating something that stands out from the crowd.

It would help if you had something that appeals to your audience to succeed in this market. This can be as simple as ensuring your app has a catchy name or as complex as developing an entire brand identity around your app’s functionality.

How much you can make: $150 — $2,000,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $6,500 (?)

How long does it take to build: 180 days (?)

Time commitment per week: Min. 5 hours/week

travel and tourism business ideas

Payment.co, an app built on top of the Stripe payment gateway for creating card-present charges, has grown to process over $70M in volume annually since launching in 2015, with the app collecting a 1% service fee on every single charge.

travel and tourism business ideas

2. Start a RV rental business

An RV rental business involves acquiring a fleet of recreational vehicles to rent out as campers for travelers and vacationers.

As an RV rental business owner, you supply motorhomes equipped with living essentials for road trips and outdoor getaways.

With flexibility around RV classes from luxury to budget rates, building inventories and customizing rental packages can create diverse revenue streams.

For hospitality-inclined founders seeking an accessible franchise, an RV rental company presents a promising venture as pandemic-weary travelers prioritize domestic trips focused on flexibility and the outdoors.

How much you can make: $2,000 — $250,000/month

How long does it take to build: 60 days (?)

travel and tourism business ideas

ROAMERICA, a campervan rental company founded by Taylor Hood and Gretchen Bayless who quit their full-time jobs to focus on their business and have expanded their fleet quickly to meet the demand of adventure-seeking customers, with most of their web traffic coming from organic Google searches and a focus on social media and brand awareness.

travel and tourism business ideas

3. Start an airbnb management company

An Airbnb management company manages every aspect on behalf of an owner and manages a complete day-to-day running of a rental property.

The services offered by the Airbnb management company include: marketing a property, optimizing financing, meeting and greeting guests, repairs, maintenance, and cleaning.

An Airbnb management company fee structure is generally based on commission, flat rate, and guaranteed income.

Airbnb management companies can easily increase the Rental Income by a minimum of 30% to 50% without compromising guest experiences.

To become an Airbnb property manager, one should be able to find homeowners who will be interested in the services offered by you. Airbnb property managers can make an average annual salary of $55,000 or $27 per hour.

How much you can make: $1,333 — $270,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $2,500 (?)

How long does it take to build: 30 days (?)

travel and tourism business ideas

HostButlers is Ireland's first professional property concierge service for short-term rentals on Airbnb, boasting over 200,000 hosted guests and profitability from month 5.

travel and tourism business ideas

4. Start a ticketing platform business

A ticketing platform business allows individuals or organizations to sell tickets to events online. This can include concerts, sports games, festivals, and more.

The ticketing platform handles all aspects of ticket sales, from setting up the event and ticket options to processing payment and distributing the tickets.

To run a successful ticketing platform business, it is essential to have a user-friendly website and a reliable ticket distribution system. Then, establish partnerships with event organizers and venues to expand the number of events available on the platform.

Marketing efforts to reach potential customers and regular updates to the platform to improve the user experience can also help drive sales. Overall, a ticketing platform can be a lucrative business opportunity for those with a strong understanding of the events industry and a knack for building and maintaining client relationships.

How much you can make: $10,000 — $1,500,000/month

travel and tourism business ideas

GreenRope, a self-funded CRM and marketing automation platform with over 1,000 customers in 20 countries, was built organically and focused on creating a positive, customer-centric culture without outside investment, with an all-in-one interface solving challenges in managing sales, marketing, customer service, and operations.

travel and tourism business ideas

5. Start a travel agency

Are you a passionate traveler with entrepreneurial skills? Then starting a travel agency can be a great career choice for you.

As a travel agency, you'll be responsible for linking travelers to providers of all the travel and tourism-related services such as accommodation, transportation, sightseeing, tour guides, local adventure, etc.

Starting an online travel agency is a lot easier than you might think. You'll need to perform market research, get a few necessary certifications (such as your IATA number), study competition, build a website, and do proper marketing.

To maximize earnings, negotiate discounts from the industry service providers, and charge travelers within the market rate.

How much you can make: $2,000 — $114,200,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $1,000 (?)

How long does it take to build: 90 days (?)

travel and tourism business ideas

Marissa Daniels runs a successful travel agency, Spread Your Wings Travel, that hit $100,000 in sales within a year of launch and provides payment plan options for its all-inclusive vacations, and she hopes to help 100 families supplement their income through the business.

travel and tourism business ideas

6. Start a travel agency

travel and tourism business ideas

7. Start a travel agency

travel and tourism business ideas

8. Start a wedding rental business

Do you love wedding planning and looking for a business idea to turn your passion into profits? Starting a wedding rental business can be a great idea.

Your role as a wedding rental business is to supply all equipment and accessories to make the occasion colorful and memorable for attendees and the wedding couple. If you are starting a wedding rental business, focus on building relationships with wedding planners and event companies. Remember often couples visit wedding venues before even contacting a rental company. Being in contact with wedding venue business owners could get you repeat business.

How much you can make: $5,000 — $5,583,333/month

How long does it take to build: 305 days (?)

travel and tourism business ideas

Photobooth Supply Co. offers a profitable business opportunity through their sleek and portable photo booths, with up to 97% satisfaction rate and a focus on customer experience, in a fast-growing event industry where photo booths are exploding.

travel and tourism business ideas

9. Start a food delivery business

In today’s busy lifestyles and schedules, cooking is no longer a priority to many. People like to order-in food from their nearest restaurants or food joints and enjoy a meal in the comfort of their homes.

The food delivery business is like a courier service through which restaurants deliver food to their customers.

You can offer retail food delivery services to restaurants within your locality if you have a truck. Customers order through a restaurant or grocer’s website, and the owners contact you to deliver.

How much you can make: $4,000 — $83,333,333/month

How much does it cost to start: $2,750 (?)

travel and tourism business ideas

Food Fleet grew over 160% in just one year and managed over 20 million in sales for its clients, securing multiple contracts with the likes of Sodexo, Levy Restaurants and more, due to its understanding of catering client needs and its advanced turnkey and design services.

travel and tourism business ideas

10. Start a mobile photography business

Want to start your own photography business? You're not alone. With the rise of social media and photo-sharing, blogging, and online retailing, it's never been easier to start making money behind your camera.

There are photographers shooting weddings, creating images for ad campaigns, freelancing for magazines, touring the world, taking photographs of destinations — the list is endless!

To start mobile photography , research the target audience and determine which specialization area is more lucrative. Invest in high-quality, professional cameras, lenses, and a computer with professional software photo-editing software.

How much you can make: $2,000 — $500,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $5,000 (?)

How long does it take to build: 200 days (?)

travel and tourism business ideas

11. Start a tour company

Starting a tour company is a great way to bring your love of travel to life. You can share your passion with others and help make their dream vacations come true!

There are many types of tour businesses, so choosing something you are passionate about and knowledgeable about is best. Here are a few of the most popular tour companies to start:

  • Food & Drink Tours
  • Adventure & Sporting Tours
  • Sightseeing & Historical Tours
  • Shopping Tours
  • and many more!

It’s also essential to determine what mode of transportation you want for your tour company, as this will determine the initial startup costs needed for your company.

To get started, find out if you need a license to operate in your state. Some states require tour companies to be licensed, while others do not. If you are required to be licensed, talk with the licensing agency to find out what steps must be taken before you can apply for that license.

How much you can make: $3,750 — $43,300,000/month

travel and tourism business ideas

How Jessica Baumgart founded a successful food tour business in Denver, which broke even and started making a profit after just three months, generating $20,000/month in revenue from offering different food tour experiences.

travel and tourism business ideas

12. Start a travel agency

travel and tourism business ideas

13. Start a virtual events business

It is no secret that the 2020 global pandemic changed how we interact and engage. Today, more meetings and events take place online than ever before. According to statistics , the trend of virtual events is not slowing anytime soon. Corporates and entertainment sectors plan to organize more virtual events in the coming decade.

Thus, starting a virtual events business can be a great idea.

A virtual event is where attendees experience the event and its content online rather than being physically present. A virtual events business ideates, plans, organizes, executes, and coordinates virtual events on behalf of its clients. A virtual events business also develops creative ideas that make the virtual events unique and memorable.

To start and operate a successful virtual events business, you must possess broadcasting and audience psychology skills and be ready to learn and deal with new technologies. The good news is that you have multiple platforms where you can run virtual events.

How much you can make: $66,667 — $2,500,000/month

How long does it take to build: 220 days (?)

travel and tourism business ideas

Entire Productions is a fast-growing event and entertainment production company with an emphasis on experience design, primarily working with corporate clients including many Fortune 500 companies in the tech and pharma industries, boasting a growth of 148% and a goal of reaching $20M annual mark.

travel and tourism business ideas

14. Start a surprise travel agency

Are you looking for a scalable side hustle idea and one that allows you some flexibility?

A surprise travel agency is a good option that will enable you to choose a friendly niche market.

Besides, a surprise travel agency lets you gain exposure and experience while it is an opportunity with unlimited income potential.

If you love sharing travel recommendations and always find the best local spots when you visit a new city, this will be ideal for you.

How much you can make: $15,000 — $550,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $250 (?)

Time commitment per week: Min. 7 hours/week

travel and tourism business ideas

Whisked Away Surprise Travel is a curated travel service for clients overwhelmed by the planning process, with revenue growth exponentially increasing each year since its launch in March 2017.

travel and tourism business ideas

15. Start an amazon business

How much you can make: $3,000 — $1,175,000/month

travel and tourism business ideas

Felony Case, a Toronto-based company designing unique iPhone cases, started as a small shop on Etsy and has grown to become an internationally recognized fashion iPhone case brand sold in top tier retailers like Nordstrom, Holt Renfrew, Indigo, Urban Outfitters, Revolve, Free People, and made over half a million dollars in revenue last year.

travel and tourism business ideas

16. Start a travel rewards app

A travel rewards app is a special mobile app that helps you earn points and rewards while traveling. These apps are designed to be used by frequent travelers who are looking to benefit from their travels.

If you love to travel but have never been able to afford it then this might be the first step to turning your dream into a reality. By making a travel rewards app you can earn handsome money by monetizing that app.

Creating a travel rewards app sounds like a complicated task. But it can be much easier than you think. You don't need travel industry experience or an office in Silicon Valley to design something that gives people more ways to earn rewards on their everyday purchases.

How much you can make: $150,000/month

How long does it take to build: 800 days (?)

travel and tourism business ideas

AwardWallet is a loyalty program tracking website which has grown to over $150,000 in monthly revenue, and since launch has retained users mainly through word of mouth due to its superior product in the space.

travel and tourism business ideas

17. Start a luggage storage business

How much you can make: $2,000 — $100,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $9,999 (?)

travel and tourism business ideas

Bounce CEO Cody Candee shares his experience co-founding a successful short-term storage marketplace which generated over $100k in annualized revenue within the first seven months of operation, expanding to new cities and offering more options such as delivery.

travel and tourism business ideas

18. Start a souvenir shop

A souvenir shop is a retail store that sells items that are typically associated with a particular place or event. These items can range from t-shirts and hats to postcards and magnets.

To start a souvenir shop, you must find a suitable location, such as a busy tourist destination or a famous shopping center. You will also need to purchase inventory, such as souvenirs and other novelty items, and attractively display them. You may also need to invest in marketing materials, such as signage and social media advertising, to attract customers.

To operate a souvenir shop, you must keep track of your inventory and restock as needed. You should also keep track of your sales and expenses to ensure your business is profitable. Customer service is also essential in this type of business, as you will interact with people from different parts of the world.

Overall, a souvenir shop can be a fun and rewarding business idea for those who enjoy interacting with people and showcasing unique products. If you are interested in starting your souvenir shop, do thorough research and seek advice from experienced business owners. Good luck!

19. Start a tour company

travel and tourism business ideas

20. Start a museum tours business

How much you can make: $250,000/month

travel and tourism business ideas

Meet Museum Hack: The NYC-based company that made $2.8 million in revenue in 2018, offering renegade tours of the world's best museums through VIP, fast-paced, story-based, and social events, and now adapting to social distancing with online storytelling workshops.

travel and tourism business ideas

21. Start a hotel consulting business

A hotel consulting business provides professional advice to investors or individuals interested in the hospitality industry. Another role of a hotel consultant is analyzing the hospitality industry and advising the hotel and resort owners on how to build a thriving business.

To start and operate a successful hotel consulting agency, focus on gaining industry knowledge and earning years of experience in hotel management.

How much you can make: $500,000/month

travel and tourism business ideas

Boyd Hollow Resorts is launching a 5-star boutique resort and event center based on a fiction book that will be the first of many Villages to be built around the world, with over 200 event inquiries received before launching.

travel and tourism business ideas

22. Start a taxi cab company

Tax services provide an essential service, including 24-hour availability and preparedness to offer transportation. The taxi cab business is earning huge profits, given the growing urban population.

To start a good taxi service, conduct market research and analysis so you understand your competition and define your unique selling proposition. Before starting the tax business, ensure you have a valid driver's license and an insurance policy.

travel and tourism business ideas

Albert Williams grew a $3.5 million transportation company, The Best Deal, from a niche transportation sector; he attributes the company's success to providing excellent service and committing to continuous learning.

travel and tourism business ideas

23. Start a tourist guide business

There's no denying the profitability of a tourism business. If you know the state and cities well, starting a tour guide business can be a very lucrative idea. All you need is a license, and you can soon start working as a tour guide.

Listed are the steps on how to start a tour guide business.

  • Register your tour guide name business
  • Obtain necessary licenses
  • Open a bank account for business transactions
  • Organize your business operations
  • Start to promote and get clients

How much you can make: $200 — $8,110,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $1,500 (?)

travel and tourism business ideas

No Code Map App is a no code builder that allows businesses to create custom interactive maps with dynamic filters automatically based on their dataset, generating >$400 in the first full month of monetization.

travel and tourism business ideas

24. Start a restaurant

If you love cooking and are passionate about entrepreneurship, starting a restaurant can be a fun and lucrative business.

To get started, choose a great location, and hire an excellent support team. You will need a chef to inspect the food and line cooks, waiters, and waitresses to serve the customers. No matter the restaurant type, you need great culinary and business skills to make your dream come true.

If you plan to open a restaurant , gain insight from consumer preferences and focus on serving modern consumers what they need.

How much you can make: $48,333 — $61,650,000/month

How long does it take to build: 120 days (?)

travel and tourism business ideas

One Life Meals is a Toronto-based healthy meal delivery service that made 14,500 meals per month and generated $130k in monthly sales in 2018 through their one-on-one consultation, lean protein and seasonal veggies-based meals, and their focus on the client experience.

travel and tourism business ideas

25. Start a bar

The “bar” business idea involves opening and operating a bar or nightclub that serves alcohol and provides entertainment for customers. To run this business, you must secure a location, obtain necessary licenses and permits, and stock your bar with various drinks and supplies. You may also need to hire staff to help with serving drinks, managing the music and lighting, and maintaining the establishment’s cleanliness.

One of the benefits of running a bar is that it can be a very lucrative business, as people are often willing to pay a premium for a night out with friends or to enjoy live music or other forms of entertainment. Additionally, a well-run bar can attract a loyal customer base and build a reputation as a popular destination in the community.

To succeed in this business, it is important to have a strong understanding of the local market, and what types of drinks and entertainment will be most appealing to your target audience. You should also be prepared to put in long hours and work on evenings and weekends, as this is when most bars are busiest.

Overall, the “bar” business idea offers the opportunity to create a fun and profitable business that can become a central hub for socializing and entertainment in the community.

26. Start a car rental business

Starting a car rental business can be a profitable venture for those interested in the auto industry.

Retail and corporate are the main segments within the car rental industry. Retail car rentals focus on individuals who rent cars for shorter periods, while corporate car rental targets companies that want to transport clients or employees.

If you are starting a car rental business , target airports, hotels, railway stations, commercial offices, and other high-traffic areas.

Market your business, hire employees who will manage the operations and keep records, and purchase business insurance for both cars and employees.

How much you can make: $2,000 — $583,333/month

travel and tourism business ideas

27. Start an aerospace company

The aerospace company’s business idea involves developing, producing, and maintaining aircraft and spacecraft. This includes commercial planes and military jets to satellites and space stations. To run an aerospace company, you will need a team of highly skilled engineers and technicians who have expertise in aeronautics and astronautics. You will also need access to advanced technology and equipment, such as computer-aided design software and testing facilities.

There are several benefits to running an aerospace company. First and foremost, you will significantly contribute to aviation and space exploration. You will also have the opportunity to work on exciting and innovative projects that have the potential to change the world.

Additionally, the aerospace industry is lucrative, with high demand for aircraft and spacecraft worldwide. Overall, the aerospace company business idea offers a unique and challenging opportunity for aspiring entrepreneurs passionate about advancing the frontiers of aviation and space travel.

28. Start a night club

Night clubs are entertainment venues comprising dance floors, light shows, and a stage for playing live music or featuring DJ music. Humans enjoy dance, and many societies incorporate dance as a prominent aspect of entertainment, socializing, and progression.

Thus, a nightclub is one of the best nighttime business ideas you can start today. Every city has its picks for the most prominent nightclubs, bars, and dance floors.

29. Start a coffee shop

Starting a coffee shop is an exciting and rewarding venture. It's a business that can be started with relatively little capital, and there are many ways to make it profitable. Coffee shops feature a low-cost stock but are profitable businesses.

If you plan to open a coffee shop, you may purchase a franchise, buy an existing business, or start from scratch. Whichever the decision, ensure a strategic location and renovate the space to create an inviting atmosphere. Develop a fantastic offering and begin marketing the business even before you open.

How much you can make: $15,000 — $52,500/month

travel and tourism business ideas

This case study follows the co-founder of Camper Cafe, a mobile coffee van business which started as a hobby and now has 6 units that supply the UK's biggest sporting events, commercial and film shoots, generating around £150k from working only 70 days of the year.

travel and tourism business ideas

30. Start a limo service

Starting a limo service business can be lucrative and rewarding for aspiring entrepreneurs. The idea behind this business is to provide luxury transportation services to individuals and groups, typically for events such as weddings, proms, corporate events, and airport transfers.

To run a successful limo service, you must invest in a fleet of luxury vehicles, such as limousines, town cars, and SUVs. You will also need to hire experienced drivers who are knowledgeable about the local area and have a clean driving record. Additionally, it’s important to have a reliable dispatch system to handle reservations and ensure timely pick-ups and drop-offs.

One of the main benefits of running a limo service is providing your clients with a high-end, luxury experience. Your business can differentiate itself by offering top-of-the-line vehicles and exceptional customer service, leading to repeat business and referrals. Another benefit is the flexibility to choose your own schedule, as most limo services operate on an as-needed basis.

Starting a limo service can be a fulfilling and lucrative business opportunity for those passionate about providing excellent transportation services to their clients.

31. Start a laundromat

The first laundromat opened in the United States in 1887. It was invented by the entrepreneur Josephine Cochrane, who was frustrated with having to wash her family’s laundry by hand.

The laundromat is a self-service facility that provides washing and drying machines for personal use. There are many different types of machines available, including coin-operated ones and those that require a card. They also provide various types of detergents and fabric softeners for use with the machines.

A laundromat can make a lot of money if it is in the right location and has the right prices.

How much you can make: $9,300 — $83,333/month

travel and tourism business ideas

A digital marketer purchased Nina's Laundromat in Northcote, Australia in July 2021, investing in its digital presence and upgrading the machines to create a new brand. Within 12 months, the revenue doubled and the store added a commercial laundry service, bringing an additional AUD24K per year.

travel and tourism business ideas

32. Start a jet ski rental business

Are you looking for a business you can start within the coastal locations? A jet ski rental business can be excellent if you target areas that attract water sports tourists. According to industry experts, the global market size for the water sports gear market will reach $55.2 billion in the next decade.

Therefore, starting the ski jet rental business can be a profitable business. To venture into the ski rental business, you may start alone or consider starting as a franchise partner. For an absolute beginner in this industry, a franchise would be advisable.

33. Start a talk show

A talk show is a live or prerecorded broadcast where a host asks the guests questions, the most popular format being interview-based ones. Talk shows are usually syndicated for airing on radio and/or television stations.

Talk shows can also be described as podcasts, where listeners subscribe to certain podcast channels to get entertainment, news, and educational content.

34. Start a tourist bodyguard business

The tourist bodyguard business idea involves providing personal security services to tourists visiting a particular city or country. This could include accompanying tourists on tours, providing transportation, and acting as a general security presence for tourists who may feel vulnerable in an unfamiliar place.

To start this business, you will need to have experience in security and possibly hold a license or certification in the field. Having a background in tourism or customer service may also be helpful, as you will be interacting with tourists regularly.

In terms of operating the business, it will be essential to establish relationships with local tour operators and other tourism-related businesses to secure clients. You should also have a plan in place for handling emergencies and be able to communicate effectively with tourists and local authorities.

For business success, it will be essential to provide high customer service and ensure tourists feel safe and secure while under your care. Ensuring security involve conducting thorough risk assessments and having contingency plans for various scenarios.

Overall, the tourist bodyguard business idea offers a unique opportunity to provide a valuable service to tourists while tapping into the growing demand for personal security services.

35. Start a museum

36. start an airport bus shuttle services.

An airport bus shuttle service transports people and luggage to and from or within airports. An airport shuttle service can be profitable to operate.

If you plan to start an airport bus shuttle, focus on building alliances and partnerships with companies and local businesses that will supply you with customers.

37. Start an airline

38. start a helicopter transportation service, 39. start a travel directory.

An online travel directory is a website that serves as a one-stop shop for all your travel needs.

It provides travelers with a vast selection of trusted reviews and tips to help people travel across the globe with ease.

These directories usually offer a comprehensive database of destinations, including hotels, restaurants, tourist attractions, and travel agents, among others.

One of the significant benefits of these directories is that they allow users to add destinations from their travel agent’s listings or local business listings based on reviews and testimonials from fellow travelers.

This feature helps users make informed decisions about their travel plans by providing them with a wealth of information on various destinations.

Additionally, online travel directories tend to have an active community of users who share their travel experiences and offer valuable insights and tips.

This community-driven approach to travel planning ensures that users get reliable and up-to-date information that can help them plan their trips with confidence.

Overall, online travel directories are an excellent resource for anyone looking to explore the world, whether you’re a seasoned traveler or a first-timer.

They offer a wealth of information on various destinations, making it easy to plan a memorable trip that meets your unique preferences and budget.

How much you can make: $7,000 — $250,000/month

travel and tourism business ideas

40. Start a school field trip business

41. start a hotel booking platform.

The explosively popular Airbnb and countless similar services have proven that the market for home and apartment rentals is growing rapidly.

As an entrepreneur who loves travel, you see an opportunity to extend this model to hotels.

That’s why you start a hotel booking platform where travelers can search for and book accommodations worldwide.

The market size of the online hotel booking platform industry worldwide amounted to nearly $518B in 2020 .

Starting a hotel booking platform can be so interesting as an idea that can proliferate. It doesn’t require any license, no inventory — only mobile phones, an internet connection, and some motivation to succeed.

How much you can make: $114,200,000/month

travel and tourism business ideas

Tripadvisor is a global travel advice network with over 1 billion reviews and recommendations from almost 8 million companies that generated 902 million U.S. dollars in global revenue in 2021, representing a 49% increase from the previous year.

travel and tourism business ideas

42. Start a private jet business

A private jet is an aircraft designed to transport small groups of people. Private jets offer a controlled, flexible experience, which commercial flights cannot provide. Demand for private jet charter services has soared, creating a business opportunity for entrepreneurs.

Business people, celebrities in the entertainment industry, and politicians are some people using private jets more often. If you are interested in aviation and looking to start a business, you may consider the private jet sector.

Your options include becoming a private jet pilot, buying and selling private jets, a private jet service center, or a private jet charter service.

43. Start a speed boat rental business

Boat hiring and boat rental services are tapping into the booming tourism sector. Water activities have become a significant tourist attraction, especially in coastal areas. Thus, boat hiring and rental are among the most attractive maritime business opportunities.

44. Start a student exchange program

travel and tourism business ideas

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travel and tourism business ideas

20 Best Travel Business ideas You Can Start

Travel Business

Travel is a great way to get away from it all and relax. So many countries around the world benefit from regular tourism, in terms of their economy, keeping history alive, and sharing traditions with newcomers. There are many unique ways to explore the world, that there is a huge market for travel business.

There are plenty of ways to start a travel business. For example, you can open a bed and breakfast or rent out a room in your home. Or you can become a tour guide or cruise line captain. There are also opportunities to earn extra income through affiliate marketing.

Checking In a hotel

Because the travel industry encompasses a lot of different areas, there are so many ways that you can set up a business which fits in with your skill set and experience. Travel businesses include hotels, tours, cruises, airlines, car rentals, and complete vacation packages.

The great thing about setting up your own business is that you can tap into your own background knowledge and stick to areas of interest for you. This could be entertainment, accommodation, or even social media representation.

If you’re thinking about starting a travel business, here are 20 travel business ideas to inspire you as well as show you how many business opportunities there really are. If you want to start a travel business, you’ll need to consider several things before launching your venture. That is why this guide aims to encompass all the small details as well as bigger picture opportunities for your travel business.

The Travel Industry

The Travel Industry

Firstly, it is worth noting that the travel industry is arguably the largest industry in the world. This is because there are new trends or changes in tourist behavior which shake things up, and keep businesses on their toes. There are so many types of vacations, that it’s no wonder why the travel industry are kept on their toes every year. Tourists want something new and exciting, which is why this industry continues to blossom.

The Six Segments of the Travel Industry

Because there is so much variation within the industry, there are six main segments which business have been known to base their concept off. It could be worth using these for inspiration to see how you can take your existing experience and apply it to a travel business.

The travel industry can be divided into tourist boards, travel services, accommodation, conferences and events, attractions and tourism services. Depending on the type of lifestyle you lead and how much travel you want to do yourself, it could be worth taking a closer look into the types of travel businesses within these segments, that you could set up.

Some of the most popular areas that travel businesses function in are providing a particular service to tourists and travelers like hotels or entertainment. On the other hand, you could set up a global enterprise, which allows you to spend more time traveling.

These businesses typically take a little more work to set up and begin making profits, but it can be highly rewarding to work towards this lifestyle. Not only that, but it will be easier to reach a higher number of people who are interested in what your business has to offer.

20 Best Travel Business ideas

Best Travel Business Ideas

1. Travel Blogger

One of the most popular businesses involved becoming a travel blogger. Because this is a slightly less traditional path to take, the steps are a little less clear-cut when it comes to generating a profit and setting up a business as a travel blogger.

However, it is recommended that you begin by exploring your local area and places that you have always wanted to travel to, and recording your experience online. Most people enjoy writing their own blogs about how they found a certain destination or experience, and it can be a great way to share your thoughts with like-minded people.

Most people set up travel blogs online where they can use it like a journal when they are visiting somewhere new, whereas others will make small notes and write up their experience once they return home. It could be a great way to spend more time traveling if that is a goal of yours.

2. Occasion/Travel Photographer

Wedding photographers earn a great deal of money for a single day, but it is hard work. If you have experience capturing weddings or taking portraits for someone, you could set up a business for travel photography or international weddings.

This could go a long way for a travel business, especially if you are offering occasion package deals such as a reduced price for multiple days consecutively. One of the most important things that is definitely worth investing in is high quality cameras and the right equipment.

Make sure you have some basic skills and experience before setting up this type of business, because there is a reason why wedding photography is such an expensive industry. You could use travel photographs that you have taken to accompany your blog posts, submit them online, or build your own social media presence. This can help you build a professional profile for yourself as a respected travel photography business.

3. Translator

Translator

For those who are more experienced with a particular language or multiple different languages, it could be worth setting up a business as a translator. Depending on your level of expertise and the versatility of the languages that you are able to translate, you can make a business that works for you.

You could advertise yourself on an international scale, or focus on a particular area where you think your skills would be best used. Translators are always in high demand, and it is worth setting up a business for yourself if this is something that you are passionate about.

Of course, the main drawback is that you will need to be able to speak at least two languages sufficiently in order to earn an income as a translator. This can be a little challenging if you are less familiar with new languages, so it isn’t always the best option for everyone.

4. Independent Travel Agency

It may seem a little unusual considering the downfall of many large travel companies, but there will always be a market for travel agencies. For this reason, it could be exciting to start your own enterprise and begin offering clients and tourists a series of vacation packages.

It could be worth comparing some best rated deals and other companies from the area to figure out estimated prices and different types of accommodations, as well as flights. Consider what kind of target audience you want to reach, and design package deals that you think are the most suitable.

For example, if you want to offer child-friendly vacations to families, or more affordable options with a little more flexibility. Other options include creating more local eco-friendly travel options. This is a great travel business idea for those who are more experienced with organizing large events and co-ordinating different services at the same time.

You could set up a small office space or storefront where people can stop by and ask for advice. Alternatively, you could benefit from the online world and work remotely from wherever you are in the world.

5. Travel Vlogger

While most people document their traveling experiences using written blogs, video-based media is becoming more popular. Some people prefer to film themselves using small cameras when they are traveling. This can create a more immersive experience for followers and their audience. The concept of video-based blogs is becoming more popular, and it can allow people to make a living in this way if it is taken seriously.

Becoming a travel vlogger typically goes hand-in-hand with social media. This is because it is usually the best way to reach your target audience, and the type of individuals that will watch your videos. It is a great way to build your online presence and boost your business as a travel vlogger.

6. Vacation Planner

Another travel business idea that could work with your skill set is to become a vacation planner. This is ideal for someone who wants to share their knowledge about a particular area and encourage people to explore unique destinations.

This can be a little challenging to start up if you have less experience traveling to certain areas, but it is nothing that the internet can’t help with. Consider setting up your own business as a vacation planner if you are a highly organized individual who likes to fill someone’s schedule.

Remember that there are many things that need to be considered when planning somebody else’s vacation. This includes whether they want to be more active or spend more time relaxing, and what type of food or hobbies they enjoy the most.

It is worth making sure that you have a great system in place for organizing certain activities, events, and scheduling appointments. This is highly needed when it comes to working as a vacation planner, as somebody else’s enjoyment is your responsibility.

7. Bike Tour Services

If you have more experience with bikes and renting or riding bikes on different terrains, then you could set up a bike tour service in a particular area where tourists spend more time. It could be beneficial to rent a storefront or a stand for people to visit and see what type of tours you are providing.

Take a closer look at the local attractions and begin creating bike routes which are suitable for beginners. You could then create slightly longer or shorter routes, with more challenging options. It could also be useful to set up a rental service for your bikes, if people want to explore an area at their own pace.

Because of this, it is useful that you have at least five bicycles which are good for beginners on hand at any time. They should be stable and comfortable, in order to encourage people to get the most out of their experience. You will also need to think about the price range that is realistic for bike tour services, and consider offering group package deals for a particular day or size of group.

It is also worth finding a reliable weather prediction app so that you can cancel or avoid booking certain days when heavy rainfall is expected. In addition, you should try to provide child seats which can be attached to the back of a bike when needed. Alternatively, customers can be shown to a daycare center or local childcare service if necessary.

8. Travel Consultant

This is slightly different to a vacation planner and a travel agent, as travel consultants are usually in charge of more complex issues. They need to figure out solutions to unique situations and make sure that everything goes according to plan.

You could become a travel consultant if you want to make sure that people have the best experience possible when they are travelling or on vacation. Complex issues that are normally handled by a travel consultant include ironing out logistical concerns with business trips, or new parents who are traveling to a foreign country for adoption purposes.

Because the role of a travel consultant is naturally varied and relatively complex, you will be more immersed in the culture and local environment than other businesses, which would require you to cater for tourists a little more. Working as a travel consultant could be an ideal way to see the world and travel to more unique places.

Because the work is largely international, you could set up your own business specializing in complex situations and more challenging situations to put yourself and your services as a travel consultant on the map for potential clients.

9. Open Your Own Bed And Breakfast

Open Your Own Bed And Breakfast

This is a growing market, and there are more people who are turning their homes, spare buildings on their property, or other locations into bed and breakfasts. It can provide a home away from home for tourists, and does not need a great deal of work on your part.

There are many services which can help you get set up and on the market for visitors, and it is worth considering this as a travel business idea. Even if you are less familiar with this concept, there are plenty of help guides with information about opening your own bed and breakfast.

You can use this as a way to generate more income on a regular basis, or to save up for your next vacation. If travel is your passion, and you want to spend more time exploring new places, you could rent out your home while you are away.

Make sure that your pets, plants, and other necessities are accounted for, and that your personal possessions are safely locked away. If you are thinking about opening your own bed and breakfast, it is important that you are offering regular rates for rooms.

Make sure that guests will have adequate access to bathrooms, and that the breakfast services are also of a high standard. Bed and breakfasts are a lot more personal than hotels, so guests often want this type of service and interaction.

10. Create A Travel App

If your area of expertise lies with developing apps, coding, and programming software, then you could set up a travel business by creating an app. You can create an app to connect travelers with others in the area, or provide useful suggestions for activities and popular places of interest.

Other travel app ideas include translation software, suggestions for common phrases in the native language of a country you are visiting, or showing places to eat or stay overnight that are not fully booked.

The great thing about travel apps is that you do not have to be in a particular country or location to do this. This means that you can create your own travel app from the comfort of your own home, as long as you have a stable internet connection and access to the necessary databases.

You could also connect with other companies when you are setting up your travel app, like websites that find the best deal for hotels, or airline companies. This allows you to generate more popularity and increase the general market for your business.

11. Rent Out Your Property For Vacations

If you have empty rooms in your home, or even entire buildings that aren’t used as frequently, then you could rent out your property for vacations. If you schedule it right, you could host somebody while you are out of town. This can get you a little more money while making sure that your home is occupied at all times.

Not only can this deter unwanted guests, but it allows you to share the joys and peace that your home provides with others. Like the bed and breakfast business, it is important that you lock all of your valuable and personal belongings away somewhere safe, or remove them beforehand.

Of course, you will need to consider pets and plants, which should be moved elsewhere if possible before you leave for your vacation. However, this can be a great way to earn extra cash when you are on vacation.

12. Language Speaker

Language Speaker

Being able to speak a country’s language well is a highly valuable skill. Many people make the most out of this by creating their own business offering lessons to children, translation services, and representing someone who does not speak the language.

This is a great way of traveling more while earning a living, because you can act as a guide for people and negotiate certain contracts with local vendors if you are able to generate tourism. Set your travel business around your particular language skills, and consider learning more about the particular uses as well as local colloquialisms which are used in certain areas.

Improving your knowledge of the language and subtle differences that exist between certain regions could also help you to teach tourists about the cultures. This can be a useful way to prevent people from disrespecting certain traditions and avoiding any potential preconceived notions.

13. Glamping Service

This is something that is usually done on a plot of land that you own or rent, and it is much easier to do this locally to you. You can attract tourists to your state by setting up a glamping business. Glamping is known as “glamorous camping”, because it provides a little more luxury than what is typically offered by regular camping.

The accommodation can be as simplistic as a weatherproof hut, a large tent, or even a tree-house. Full beds are normally provided, and guests are typically left to their own devices once they are settled. Glamping sites are normally seen as more high-end camping grounds, with more facilities than you would expect.

14. Pet Sitting Business

Another way that you could start a travel business is to promote pet sitting services. You could offer to take care of people’s pets while they are traveling, or set up a kennel business. This can be a safe place for dogs, cats, and other beloved household pets to stay and play with other animals while their owners are traveling.

While this does not directly involve traveling, you could always use a pet sitting business to save up for trips and build a reputation as a respected business for potential investors in the future.

15. Create An Adventure Club

This is a great option for more adventurous individuals who want to share their enthusiasm and stay active. Because it is a little more focused, it is important to do some market research ahead of time to see if there would be a demand for it. You could choose to focus on climbing walls, long hikes, kayaking, or other high energy sports.

Most adventure clubs are suitable for kids and adults, and it is worth being flexible to suit a range of potential customers. This could make your business a great tourist destination, or allow you to travel around and offer this experience internationally.

If you know someone or a group of people who consider themselves more physically active and enthusiastic about outdoor adventure, you could hire them to work for your business. This allows you to spend more time promoting your brand and expanding your team where necessary.

16. House Sitting Services

You can help people have more peace of mind by taking care of their pets, homes, and plants. Keep things moving while they are traveling and make sure that everything is being taken care of in their homes. This is an ideal solution for people who live in areas of high crime rates, or who are planning a long trip away.

You could keep on top of the laundry, vacuum, offer pet walking, or just keep someone’s home occupied while they are away. Setting up a business as a house sitter is surprisingly easy. The first step is to build your reputation and gain a customer base in the area that you live.

Once you have a reputation, it is worth taking a closer look at the different ways of advertising your business. Think about the type of people you are trying to attract, and how they will be able to reach you when needed. This can be done using social media, email, or over the phone.

It is important that you have a reliable method of scheduling your time before booking people in for house sitting services. This can prevent any possible overlap that can occur when you are setting up a business that has a lot of moving parts at once.

17. Boutique Hotel

Boutique Hotel

Some people are willing to pay extra for a luxurious experience, and it is worth using this to your advantage. Interestingly, boutique hotels are actually considered some of the most profitable in the tourism industry. This is because there is a great deal of work which is needed to ensure that guests receive the best possible experience.

From chefs using only the highest quality ingredients, to sleeping on the most luxurious material, boutique hotels could be great investment opportunities for travel businesses if you have the initial funds necessary.

18. Tour Guide Services

For those who have more knowledge about a particular area, region, or country, you could start a business as a tour guide. Showing people around places and teaching them about certain traditions or ceremonies that took place there is a highly rewarding experience.

Not only that, but it allows people to appreciate the culture of a country without disrespecting anything unknowingly. You do not need to speak the language in order to be a tour guide, but it helps if you learn some basic phrases ahead of time.

Additionally, you could focus your tours on less well-known areas and attractions that are often overlooked by tourists. Take the time to think about how you can offer a unique experience, and learn about the less popular history of a place. Off-the-beaten-path tours are interesting because they tell stories of populations that are long forgotten, and bring these traditions to life.

19. Traveling Event Organizer

Travelling Event Organiser

Weddings, parties, work events, and other ceremonies are enjoyed around the world. You could set up a business as a traveling event organizer if you are confident managing multiple teams of workers at the same time.

It is a juggling act to keep everything running smoothly and organized, which is why there is such a high demand for traveling event organizers globally. Working as a traveling event organizer is just as easy to do within the local area as it is internationally, which is why you could easily earn a living while traveling.

Think about what type of experience you want to provide clients with, and the type of potential target audience you are targeting. This could be larger scale events with hundreds of guests or more intimate gatherings, organizing business retreats, or weddings specifically.

20. Ecotourism

So many people are becoming more concerned about their carbon footprint, and the impact their actions have on the environment. Because of this, there are considerably more travel businesses that focus on ecotourism coming into the light.

These services show how we can give back to the natural world, and can even teach us ways of protecting the environment. Because the emphasis is on protecting the natural environment, most ecotourism businesses will show you how to explore your local area with a fresh perspective.

Alternative methods of transportation which are kinder to the planet are also encouraged for those who want to travel a little further. These include trains, public transport, and vehicle sharing services. Teaching people about local wildlife and the importance of giving back to the natural world is incredibly rewarding.

Many ecotourism business owners enjoy showing people how our actions have consequences for the natural environment. It is a great way to encourage people to create more sustainable habits and make more responsible choices in the future.

Traveling bags

Like we’ve mentioned before, there are so many areas that you can choose to specialize in when it comes to creating your own travel business. This is because the travel industry is an umbrella term which refers to tourist boards, accommodation, transportation, local attractions, and many more aspects.

Because there is such a wide variety of routes you can decide to go down, it is worth finding a specific market that allows you to use your background knowledge and existing skills. For example, if you are fluent in a particular language, then you could offer your services as a translator or local tourist guide.

People who are more physically active and enthusiastic about spending time outdoors could create a business based on an adventure club, which would be ideal for children and adults. Alternatively, you could set up a business through the form of a travel app, which can make the entire experience much more seamless.

The great thing about the travel industry, encompassing so many areas of interest and skill, is that there are so many opportunities to create your own business that helps people who are frequent travelers. Make sure you are finding something that you are passionate about before finding a way to turn it into a service or product that other businesses or tourists can pay for when they are traveling.

11 Business Ideas for Travel Lovers

travel and tourism business ideas

Table of Contents

Do you want to explore the world and be your own boss? Starting your own business doesn’t mean you have to stay in one place. Many businesses in the digital age don’t require a brick-and-mortar shop, and some businesses will even take you to your dream destinations.

Running a business isn’t for the faint of heart, however. If you’re determined to see the world while owning a business, check out these 11 business ideas for people who love to travel. 

Business ideas for travel lovers

1. traveling personal assistant.

graphic of a two people in an airport terminal

Some people, such as politicians and celebrities, require a personal assistant. Personal assistants usually travel with their employer whether they are going on tour, have speaking events or conduct business in other locations.

If organization, time management and problem-solving are your top skills, create your own agency. Personal assistants typically arrange travel and accommodations, manage schedules, run errands and coordinate with other staff members. 

2. Travel blogger

If you love writing and photography, a travel blog could be your ticket to several dream destinations. Bloggers often create helpful guides, explore new cities, take interesting photos, and provide recommendations and tips. Before you take the plunge, however, understand that blogging can be tough and time-consuming. It often takes a couple of years before you make money blogging, but when you do, you’re essentially getting paid to travel the world and write about it.

If writing isn’t your expertise and you’re better with a camera, try being a travel vlogger. With YouTube, vlogging is a lucrative business. Take your business on the road and create videos about traveling the world and visiting the best tourist spots.

3. Social media influencer

If you have a large online following, you can make a steady income through sponsored posts and pictures. Many brands use influencers to advertise their products and encourage followers to buy goods and services.

Some brands will even pay for social media influencers to attend their events or stay at their resorts in exchange for documenting their experience on their social media accounts.

4. Travel agency

graphic of a travel agent using a desktop computer

People want honest and helpful advice. Travel agents help people plan vacations and trips across the globe. They often have specialties for different countries or niches. If there is a country or city you love to visit, you can make recommendations to others who want to see more of the world.

You can start your own home-based travel agency through either a franchise or non-franchise agency depending on your budget and accreditation. You may need to look into obtaining a certification, and you may need to pay monthly fees if you partner with a host agency.

5. Photographer

Photography is a great skill to have if you want to travel. If you start a photography business, you could travel the world and capture its beauty with your camera. You could sell these photos to publications or as art. You could also become skilled at a specific type of photography, such as candid portraits, family photography or wedding photography. People need a skilled photographer at their destination wedding, and you could be just the person for the job.

6. Public speaker

Do you have expertise in your field and great communication skills? If so, you could become a public speaker. Speakers often travel across the country or even the world to spread their message and inspire millions. These individuals also have other streams of income, such as being a social media influencer, selling books or creating a blog about their expertise.

7. Traveling event planner

Event planners organize corporate and professional events and meetings. They typically arrange catering, location selection, travel accommodations and more. If you have networking, organizational and time-management skills, you could travel the world as an event planner. Event planning worldwide could open up even more travel opportunities and larger-scale events in the long term.

8. Translator

graphic of a person sitting at a desk using a laptop with conversation bubbles above them

If you’re fluent in multiple languages, creating a translation business could be a great way to see the world. Translators are needed in almost every industry. They assist international businesses, globe-trotting executives and high-profile individuals by translating documents, books, emails, conversations and more. If you’re not sure where to start, offer to translate menus for restaurants in your area or promotional materials for small businesses.

9. Wedding planner

The job of a wedding planner is to create a stress-free wedding day. Wedding planners must be the calm in the middle of the storm and have a unique ability to soothe nerves when everything doesn’t go as planned.

While a lot of wedding planners have expertise and a network in a specific town or location, many couples opt for a destination wedding. These weddings can typically be even more stressful, because you must figure out how to get guests from point A to point B. You also must make accommodations over the phone rather than in person. However, this is a great opportunity to travel to beautiful places across the globe.

10. Graphic designer

As our world becomes more digital, the demand for website developers and graphic designers is growing. With online tutorials and programs — including Photoshop, WordPress and Illustrator — it’s easier than ever to create your own graphic design business.

Market yourself as a freelance graphic designer, and assist others in creating their own branding, landing pages and promotions — a job you can do from any location. A knowledge of coding (HTML, PHP and CSS) further adds to your expertise so you can help companies develop business websites as well as design them.

11. House sitter

graphic of person playing with a dog

Many people feel better about leaving for vacation with someone staying at their house to take care of their home and pets. In exchange for your services as a house sitter (feeding and walking pets, gathering mail and tending to housework), some people may pay you to stay at their homes while they travel abroad or stay at one of their multiple homes. There are websites and services to get your name out there. You could also create your own house sitter agency, marketing yourself as trustworthy and reputable.

As fun as the above travel-lover jobs might sound, traveling can bring stress due to delayed flights, high costs and other unexpected events. Our guide to avoiding stress during business travel can help you navigate almost any challenge you face.

What to know before starting your business

There are some key tips you should know before attempting to start your own business. These are true for both travel-heavy businesses and those that would mostly keep you at home.

It takes more than just passion.

Although starting your own business allows you to do something you love, that’s only a small part of the endeavor. Running your own company involves a lot of responsibilities, many of which won’t be as enjoyable as creating your product or providing your service. However, by creating a business plan , interacting with customers and marketing your company, you’ll have a greater chance of success. 

Activity and growth aren’t the same. 

Just because your company is changing doesn’t necessarily mean you have a growing business . Hiring new employees, adding features to your products and expanding your physical space can help you grow. But unless these steps lead to a notable increase in income, you’ve expanded only your operations; in this situation, new strategies will be necessary for true growth. 

Your numbers are vital.

Data on how much your business is earning and spending are key to your success. Without working benchmarks for how well your business is performing, you might not know how to respond to potential problems until it’s too late. 

You need the right team. 

Unless you can run your business entirely by yourself, you’ll need a good team behind you. You shouldn’t pick just anyone to help you run your company; hiring the wrong employee can cost more money in the long run. Anyone you hire should have similar career goals to your own and dedicate their working hours to your success. 

Make time for fun.

You should always leave room for fun for both yourself and your employees. While getting a business off the ground does require a lot of dedication and effort, it shouldn’t take up your entire life. To perform their best work, most people need time to recharge, and they can’t do that while on the clock. Be mindful of a healthy work-life balance so you and your employees are ready for the next day.

Looking for more ways to start a business? Check out these ideas from our partners at CO–by U.S. Chamber of Commerce , or dig into these other great business ideas .

Your own business offers challenges and rewards

Whether you’re starting a business to travel or gain control over your future career, the process isn’t easy. There are plenty of obstacles that can pop up; getting a company off the ground is one of the toughest things you can do. But that makes pulling it off all the more rewarding, and the sooner you get started, the more quickly you can reap the benefits.

Isaiah Atkins and Max Freedman contributed to the writing and research in this article.

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best travel business ideas

Best 55 Profitable Travel Business Ideas in 2024

India, with its rich cultural heritage, diverse landscapes, and vibrant tourism industry, presents a plethora of opportunities for entrepreneurs looking to venture into the travel business sector. From luxury travel concierge services to adventure sports equipment rental, the possibilities are endless. In this article, we will explore some of the best travel business ideas in India, catering to the diverse needs and preferences of travellers seeking unique and memorable experiences across the country.

Table of Contents

What is a Travel Business?

A travel business refers to any enterprise that provides products or services related to travel, tourism, and hospitality. These businesses cater to the needs of travellers by offering a wide range of services, including transportation, accommodation, tour packages, activities, and other related amenities.

Travel businesses can take various forms, such as travel agencies, tour operators, accommodation providers (hotels, resorts, hostels), transportation services (airlines, cruise lines, car rental companies), destination management companies, and online travel agencies (OTAs).

List of 55 Travel Business Ideas

#1. tour operator.

A tour operator business in India involves organizing and conducting tours for travellers to explore various destinations within the country. This business plays a crucial role in facilitating memorable travel experiences by curating itineraries and arranging accommodations, transportation, and activities for tourists.

#2. Travel Agency

Starting a travel agency is one of the most common and lucrative business opportunities in the tourism industry. Broadly, you can start the business in two ways. Either as an independent travel operator or as a franchise partner of a reputed travel company. This business is easy to start. And it doesn’t demand huge capital investment initially.

#3. Adventure Club

You can start an adventure club in any area regardless of your location. Generally, adventure clubs arrange adventure trips, activities, and sports for the members. Apart from the membership fees, you can earn advertising revenue from the different companies who want to promote their products.

#4. Homestay Accommodation

A homestay accommodation business in India involves offering lodging and hospitality services to travellers in a home-like environment. It provides an opportunity for tourists to experience local culture, cuisine, and hospitality while staying with host families or individuals.

#5. Heritage Tour Guide

A heritage tour guide business in India involves offering guided tours to historical and cultural landmarks, heritage sites, and architectural wonders across the country. As a heritage tour guide, you play a crucial role in educating and entertaining tourists about India’s rich cultural heritage and historical significance.

#6. Wildlife Tour Operator

A wildlife tour operator business in India involves organizing and facilitating guided tours to explore the diverse wildlife and natural habitats across the country. As a wildlife tour operator, you play a vital role in offering curated wildlife experiences, including safaris, birdwatching tours, jungle expeditions, and eco-tourism adventures.

#7. Destination Wedding Planner

#8. cruise tour operator.

A cruise tour operator business in India involves organizing and managing cruise vacations for travellers, offering them memorable experiences aboard luxury cruise ships along India’s coastal regions or international destinations. As a cruise tour operator, you’ll be responsible for planning cruise itineraries, coordinating travel arrangements, and providing exceptional customer service to cruise passengers.

#9. Photography Tour Organizer

A photography tour-organizing business in India involves curating and managing guided tours and workshops for photography enthusiasts, offering them opportunities to explore picturesque destinations and capture stunning images while enhancing their photography skills.

#10. Food Tour Operator

A food tour operator business in India involves organizing guided culinary experiences for locals and tourists, showcasing the rich diversity of Indian cuisine and culture through curated food tours to different regions, cities, and neighbourhoods. You will need to arrange for necessary permits, licenses, and permissions required for conducting food tours in specific locations, adhering to regulatory guidelines and ensuring compliance with food safety and hygiene standards.

Read:  Best Food Business Ideas

#11. Pilgrimage Tour Operator

Pilgrimage tourism holds significant cultural and spiritual importance in India, attracting millions of devotees and spiritual seekers from around the world. As a pilgrimage tour operator in India, you have the opportunity to facilitate enriching and spiritually uplifting journeys to revered religious sites across the country. You can consider destinations like Varanasi, Haridwar, Rishikesh, Amritsar, Bodh Gaya, Tirupati, Shirdi, Vaishno Devi, and others based on their religious significance and historical importance.

#12. Adventure Sports Equipment Rental

The adventure sports industry is booming worldwide, offering thrilling experiences for enthusiasts seeking adrenaline-pumping activities. As an adventure sports equipment rental business owner, you have the opportunity to cater to this growing market by providing high-quality equipment for various adventure sports and activities. You can rent out adventure sports equipment such as bicycles, kayaks, and camping gear to adventure enthusiasts.

#13. Yoga and Wellness Retreat Organizer

Yoga and wellness retreats have gained immense popularity in recent years as people seek holistic experiences to rejuvenate their mind, body, and soul. If you have a passion for yoga and wellness practices, starting a yoga and wellness retreat organizer business in India can be a fulfilling venture. You can consider incorporating elements such as yoga classes, meditation sessions, Ayurveda treatments, nature walks, cultural experiences, and healthy organic meals.

Read:   How to Start a Yoga Business

#14. Luxury Travel Concierge Services

Luxury travel concierge services cater to the needs of discerning travelers seeking exclusive and personalized experiences. If you have a passion for luxury travel and a knack for creating unforgettable experiences, starting a luxury travel concierge services business in India can be a rewarding venture.

#15. Airport Game Arcade

If you want to start a small kiosk retail business, then you can consider this opportunity. In most international airports, people spend a lot of time waiting for their next flights. And definitely, they look for an entertainment opportunity to pass the time. Hence, you can earn a lucrative income from an airport game arcade.

#16. Airport Shuttle Service

This is another great opportunity if you live in a location near the airport. You have to provide a fast, easy, cost-effective way to book airport ground transportation. Additionally, you may consider providing two different services also – shuttle and private sedan. However, the business demands moderate capital investment and strategic planning.

#17. Beach Hotel

Beach hotels are very popular worldwide. Generally, these hotels provide hotels, conference rooms, restaurants, and SPA among other services such as business center, laundry, and others. Establishing a beach hotel is a highly cash-intensive business. However, you can earn a lucrative ROI in the long run.

#18. Bed and Breakfast Business

If you want to start and run a home business in the tourism industry, then you can consider this opportunity. Offering bed & breakfast service is a perfect business for housewives, moms, and stay-at-home parents. However, it is important to check the licensing issues in your location before commencing the business.

#19. Boutique Hotel

Boutique hotels are small in size. Typically, they have 10 to 100 rooms. Generally, boutique hotels attract upscale consumers by providing luxury accommodations with a spa, yoga, etc. In addition to that, these hotels come with a specific theme. Before initiating a boutique hotel business, you must craft a business plan with the right marketing strategy.

Read:   Best Hotel Business Ideas

#20. Canoe Rental Service

You can start a canoe rental service on the river or sea. Apart from the canoe, you need to provide skilled manpower for personal assistance. Tourists who want to enjoy the natural scenic beauty of the water are your potential clients in this business. As a value-added service, provide information on camping, hiking, fishing, exploring, or picnicking.

#21. Car Rental

The car rental business allows you to start with a small investment and with a comparative laser risk. However, the industry is highly competitive these days. The globally rising disposable incomes together with enhanced road infrastructure are the key factors for propelling the number of leisure and business trips. Hence, it boosts industry growth.

#22. Charter Helicopter Service

Starting a helicopter company is not everyone’s cup of tea. The business demands a lot of investment towards procuring the copter, licensing, and maintenance. Additionally, the business demands the right marketing strategy and funds for implementing that.

#23. Coffee Shop

If you want to start a food retail business in the travel industry, then you can consider starting a coffee shop . Coffee is one of the most preferred drinks worldwide. However, location is the most important aspect of this business. Apart from the different types of coffee including hot, cold, and espresso, you can offer cookies and snack items also.

#24. Event Planning

Event planning is one of the most lucrative service-based opportunities in the travel industry. As an event planner, your primary responsibility is to design inspiring and innovative corporate events that bring some great ideas to the fore. Like any other service-based business, you need good manpower in this business.

#25. Translator

If you live in a tourist destination or a metro city, you can make good money by offering translation services to people coming from outside. You can also contact tour operators who need translators for package tours outside and incoming guests.

#26. Ecotourism Business

Nowadays, ecotourism or nature tourism is the fastest-growing segment of the travel industry. As people are becoming environmentally conscious, the demand for this type of travel is growing. In ecotourism, tourists enjoy nature without leaving a harmful impact on nature. Additionally, ecotourism can provide a viable economic development alternative for local communities with few other income-generating options.

#27. Ferry Business

A ferry is a merchant’s vessel. It offers regular service through the water with many stops. Ferries form a part of the public transport systems of many waterside cities and islands, allowing direct transit between points at a capital cost much lower than bridges or tunnels. Before initiating a ferry business, you must conduct thorough market research.

#28. Healthy Vending Machine

A healthy vending machine makes healthy food more convenient than junk food. Generally, these machines provide healthy snacks, drinks, and meals. In getting success in this business, the location plays the most crucial role. You must provide quality foods according to the taste of the demographics of that area.

#29. Travel Management Institute

If you want to start an education-based travel business in the tourism industry, then you can consider this opportunity. A full-scale travel management institute provides several courses and programs for the students.

#30. Houseboat Rental Service

Houseboats are some specific boats that are perfect for staying on the water. These are also popular as float houses. If you stay in a tourist destination that has waterbodies, you can consider starting this business. The modern houseboats offer comfortable staying with other amenities and food.

#31. Jet Ski Rental Service

If you stay in a coastal location that attracts people, you can consider starting a jet ski rental service business. The business demands small capital investment and proper business licenses for operation. Additionally, you must conduct thorough research about the potential of that particular location.

#32. Kayak Tours

If you are passionate about kayaking, you can turn your hobby into a successful business venture. First of all, decide where you want to offer kayaking tours. Additionally, learn about the area, wildlife, water currents, trivia, and history of your tour. Before initiating the business, check the licensing issues of your location.

#33. Luggage Delivery Service

Luggage delivery or luggage shipping services are getting huge popularity these days. Generally, these companies provide safe and on-time luggage delivery in exchange for a cheaper rate than flights. In addition to that, they offer different types of services like shipping cycles, bikes, and other household items.

#34. Luggage Store

You can open a luggage store business in two ways. Either as your store with a product line of multi-brand. Otherwise, you can start as a franchise partner of a reputed luggage company. The business is easy to start. Additionally, it is a profitable retail business in the tourism industry.

#35. Medical Tourism

Nowadays, medical tourism is a multi-million dollar industry. And both the developing and developed countries get the benefits of this. However, initiating this type of specialized service-based business demands adequate knowledge about the industry.

#36. Microbrewery

Initiating a microbrewery in a travel destination is a highly lucrative business. Generally, microbreweries serve craft beer with other snacks and food items. The business demands moderate capital investment and strategic planning.

#37. Night Club

A nightclub is an entertainment venue that comes with a bar. Typically, a nightclub consists of a stage for live music, one or more dance floor areas, and a DJ booth, where a DJ plays recorded music. This is a very lucrative opportunity both in metro cities and tourist destinations.

#38. Online Hotel Booking Site

If you want to start an online business in the travel industry, you can consider this opportunity. Currently, numerous options are available for establishing an online platform. However, the business demands intensive research and moderate capital investment.

#39. Online Ticketing Service

This is another great online business in the tourism industry. Typically, online ticketing sites offer online ticket booking facilities for air, train, bus, taxi, shuttle, etc. However, you can include other value-added services like hotel booking.

#40. Photography Business

The photography business is highly related to the travel and tourism industry. Every tourist place has the potential for this business. However, you must have the skill to click quality photos and equipment like a camera, light, etc.

#41. Private Security Service

Private security or escort services are gaining huge popularity in the leisure and tourism industry. And this is perfect for starting this business. With a very small capital investment, you can start this business. However, it is important to understand the market potential in your locality first.

#42. Scooter Rental Business

If you want to start a small localized business, then scooter rental is perfect for you. Even with 3 to 4 scooters, you can start this service. The business demands upfront startup capital investment and proper advertising.

#43. Shuttle Service

Opening a shuttle service company demands a lot of hard work and planning. However, the business is highly lucrative in metro cities and tourist places. First of all, conduct market research and try to understand the exact demand. Finally, determine what type of shuttle service you want to provide.

#44. Speciality Travel

If you want to start and run a travel company that attracts a niche audience, then you can consider this opportunity. There are several options you can consider. The list includes seniors, families with small children, women travelling alone, music lovers, and so on.

#45. Translation Service

This is another great service-based business you can start almost without investment. International tourists often look for this type of service. If you have sound knowledge of several languages, you can consider this business.

#46. Adventure Travel Agency

Adventure travel agencies organize adventure tours. It is a type of niche tourism, involving exploration or travel with a certain degree of risk, and which may require special skills and physical exertion. Generally, teens and youths are the major participants in this type of tour.

#47. Organize Travel Fair

Organizing travel fairs is a very lucrative business. However, the business demands moderate capital investment, proper planning, a good connection with potential prospects, etc. People visit travel fairs to learn several trends in the industry. And companies in the travel-related business spend a lot of money on showcasing their products to the targetted audience.

#48. Travel Insurance Selling

If you are passionate about financial services, then you can consider selling travel insurance. several reputed insurance companies offer insurance facilities for travellers. The first thing that you have to do is get a certified agency code for that company. And then only, you can sell travel insurance to the people who are looking for the same.

#49. Travel Blog

If you have some specific expertise in the travel segment, you can set up a travel blog. Creating a blog is extremely SIMPLE and it does not require any coding skills (HTML). The whole process is somewhat automatic. Irrespective of your age you can start creating a blog.

Read:   How to Start a Blog

#50. Travel Magazine

If you want to start a travel business in the media and publication segment, then start a travel magazine. However, this is not at all an easy business to start. It definitely, demands a lot of planning and capital investment. However, the business is highly profitable and ensures a good return.

#51. Water Taxi Service

The success of the water taxi business hugely depends on the location. So, you must understand the specific market demand in the location where you want to operate the business. This travel business demands small startup capital and hard work.

#52. Transportation Booking Platform

You can develop an online platform for booking transportation services, including flights, trains, buses, and taxis, catering to both domestic and international travellers.

#53. Destination Management Company (DMC)

Consider providing comprehensive destination management services, including itinerary planning, logistics, and on-ground support for corporate and leisure travellers visiting India.

#54. Social Media Influencer

Social media influencers can play a significant role in promoting a travel business in India by creating engaging content that showcases destinations, experiences, and services offered by the business. Influencers with a large and engaged following can help increase brand visibility, attract potential customers, and generate excitement around travel experiences, ultimately driving bookings and revenue for the business.

#55. Transportation Services

The transportation sector within the travel industry offers various opportunities, including providing transportation services such as taxis, rental cars, buses, or specialized vehicles for tours and excursions. Additionally, there are opportunities for businesses that offer shuttle services between popular tourist destinations, airport transfers, and transportation solutions for specific travel segments like adventure tourism or pilgrimage tours.

Frequently Asked Questions

What type of travel business can i start in india.

There are various types of travel businesses you can start in India, including tour operator services, travel agency operations, adventure tourism ventures, destination wedding planning services, transportation services, accommodation services (such as hotels, homestays, or bed and breakfasts), and niche travel experiences like wellness retreats or culinary tours.

Do I need any specific qualifications or certifications to start a travel business in India?

The requirements for qualifications or certifications may vary depending on the type of travel business you plan to start and the regulations in your specific location. For instance, if you intend to offer tour guide services, you may need to acquire relevant certifications or licenses from tourism authorities. It’s advisable to research the specific requirements for your chosen niche and comply with all applicable regulations.

How do I attract customers to my travel business in India?

Attracting customers to your travel business requires a comprehensive marketing strategy that includes building a strong online presence through a website and social media platforms, leveraging digital marketing techniques such as search engine optimization (SEO) and social media marketing, networking with other businesses in the tourism industry, offering attractive packages or deals, and providing excellent customer service to encourage positive word-of-mouth referrals.

What are the legal and regulatory requirements for starting a travel business in India?

The legal and regulatory requirements for starting a travel business in India may include registering your business with the appropriate government authorities, obtaining necessary licenses or permits (such as a tourism license or a travel agency license), complying with tax regulations, and adhering to consumer protection laws. It’s essential to research and understand the specific legal and regulatory requirements applicable to your type of travel business and location.

What are the key challenges faced by travel businesses in India?

Some of the key challenges faced by travel businesses in India include intense competition, fluctuating demand due to seasonal factors or external events, regulatory complexities, managing customer expectations and preferences, ensuring consistent quality of services, and adapting to technological advancements and changing consumer trends.

What are some emerging trends in the Indian travel industry that I should be aware of?

Some emerging trends in the Indian travel industry include the rise of experiential travel, increased demand for sustainable and responsible tourism practices, the growing popularity of offbeat destinations and niche experiences, the influence of social media and digital platforms on travel decision-making, and the integration of technology such as artificial intelligence (AI) and virtual reality (VR) in enhancing customer experiences.

What are some resources or organizations that can provide support and guidance for aspiring travel entrepreneurs in India?

There are several resources and organizations in India that can provide support and guidance for aspiring travel entrepreneurs, including industry associations such as the Travel Agents Association of India ( TAAI) , the Indian Association of Tour Operators (IATO), and the Adventure Tour Operators Association of India (ATOAI). Additionally, government agencies like the Ministry of Tourism and state tourism departments may offer assistance, and there are various training programs and workshops available for skill development and networking opportunities.

Next What Business Research Team

Next What Business Research Team

The Editorial Staff at NextWhatBusiness is a team of Business Consultants having years of experience in small and medium-scale businesses.

Innovation That Matters

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travel and tourism business ideas

Innovation Snapshot

Top 7 Travel and Tourism Innovations From 2020

Travel has been limited this year, but the creative travel innovations continue. check out our top seven from 2020..

For much of 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic forbade us from visiting other households, let alone travelling to a different location or holidaying abroad. This had a devastating effect on the travel and tourism industry, with its global revenue dropping by a massive 42.1 per cent from 2019.

The impact of this has been manifold, touching communities who rely on tourism for survival, as well as multiple travel companies who have had to shut down. However, the upside of this has been the positive environment impact of travellers and tourists staying put.

Here, we have collected seven of our most creative travel and tourism innovations of the past year. Some seek to help those communities who rely on tourism by providing virtual experiences; some aim to make travelling in the future COVID-proof; and some hope to maintain the positive environmental impact of this year, by helping travel to become more sustainable.

travel and tourism business ideas

1. A VIRTUAL TOUR OF THE FAROE ISLANDS WITH REMOTE-CONTROLLED GUIDES

Going a bit stir crazy from the lockdown? Missing your travel fix? The Faroe Islands, a Denmark territory, have come up with a way to allow people around the world to go on a self-guided tour of the archipelago. Camera-wearing locals respond to sight-seeing commands from people at home, allowing virtual tourists to control their own route.

Virtual visitors control their tour guide using a free app and have two minutes of control over the guide, who also provides a commentary. After their two minutes are up it is someone else’s turn, although virtual tourists can rejoin the queue for another two minutes any number of times. The tours are available for an hour twice each day, at 2 pm and 5 pm (BST). Guides may be in kayaks, on horseback or hiking around the mountain villages.

The remote North Atlantic islands depend heavily on tourism to augment traditional trades such as fishing and sheep-herding, and this year the Faroe Islands had planned to ramp up tourism with two new 200-room hotels in the capital, Tórshavn. Although the coronavirus pandemic has ended that ambition for this year, the Faroese hope the virtual tourism app will encourage people to come to visit in the future.

Read more about the virtual tour.

travel and tourism business ideas

2. HOTEL BOOKING PLATFORM OFFSETS 100 PER CENT OF CARBON EMISSIONS FROM HOTEL STAYS

The Denmark-based, hotel booking platform Goodwings offers subscription-based access to more than one million hotels worldwide at wholesale rates. However, Goodwings is more than the average booking site; the company is a B Corp–certified member aiming to turn the hotel industry into a catalyst for sustainable change. With Goodwings, all hotel stays are 100 per cent carbon compensated, supporting people and the planet for free.

Its business model is built on partnerships, with a global network of 100 nonprofit partners in over 40 countries acting as their ambassadors and marketing channels. The money saved on advertising then gets redirected towards projects and people who are actively working towards the SDGs.

Lara Mulady, Head of Communications at Goodwings, told Springwise that “We wanted to take the focus away from radical innovations and instead look at how we could change existing services to make it easier for people to have an impact every day”. 

Read more about Goodwings.

travel and tourism business ideas

3. HOTEL INTRODUCES CONTACTLESS STAYS VIA FREE APP

As part of the company’s coronavirus-related adaptations of services, guests can now enjoy contactless stays at all citizenM Hotel worldwide locations. Free to download, the citizenM app allows visitors to choose a comfortable level of social interaction. All locations within the business’ portfolio are now cashless, and guests use the app to select a room before arrival.

Check-in and check out is completed in-app, and all entertainment and ambient systems in the rooms are controlled via the guest’s smartphone. Additional safety measures installed within the hotels include hourly cleaning of high traffic areas including elevators and the removal of carpets in all guest rooms. Room cleaning service is now opt-in, so visitors can avoid having anyone enter their room during their stay. The app also provides a walking distance search filter and local discounts that highlight nearby attractions.

Read more about the citizenM app.

travel and tourism business ideas

4. ENERGY-POSITIVE HOTEL TO BE BUILT IN NORWAY

The new hotel, “Svart”, (named after the Svartisen glacier) will be the first hotel to be built after the energy positive “Powerhouse” standard in a Northern climate, producing more energy than it uses. Moreover, it will have a demand for energy that is 85 per cent lower than a typical modern hotel. 

Designed by the leading Norwegian sustainable design studio Snøhetta, Svart will be built at the foot of the Svartisen glacier in the unspoiled municipality of Meløy in northern Norway. The hotel was commissioned by Arctic Adventures of Norway, a company operating in the eco-sustainable and naturalistic tourism sector, and plans to be completed by 2023. 

The hotel will stand on a stilt construction built with weather-resistant wooden poles that extend several metres below the surface of the fjord. Thanks to its many large windows, the circular-shaped hotel will offer panoramic views of the fjord, providing direct contact with nature. The ring-like shape is inspired by the local architecture of the “fiskehjell” (a wooden structure used to dry fish) and the “rorbue” (a traditional type of seasonal house used by fishermen). 

Read more bout the Svart hotel.

travel and tourism business ideas

5. ‘ORIGAMI’ AEROPLANE SEAT DESIGN COULD HELP MAKE FLYING SAFE FROM COVID-19

French cabin equipment supplier Safran Aerosystems has partnered with British seating designer Universal Movement to create an “Origami” seat that makes partitions around economy-class seats.

The design – which is officially called Interspace Comfort System – features two wings within the seat-back that can be unfolded to offer lateral support and prevent movement, leaving the middle seat of three vacant and creating a privacy barrier between seats.

The concave padded shells, which are the same height as the seat, can be installed on 90 per cent of economy seats, says Safran. Safran Seats executive vice-president strategy and innovation Quentin Munier said he hopes to have the product on the market in the next few months, and the premium-economy concept later in the year. 

Read more about the Interspace Comfort System.

travel and tourism business ideas

6. AN APP FOR MAKING SUSTAINABLE CHOICES WHEN TRAVELLING

It can be difficult to maintain a focus on sustainability when travelling, especially in an unfamiliar place. The French startup Tookki has a solution – a free mobile app that allows users to find environmentally-friendly restaurants, hotels, transport and more.

Tookki vets establishments and activities for their commitment to sustainability before listing them on its site. In addition, users can share places and experiences on the platform by acting as “ambassadors”. Once suggestions are validated by Tookki, the ambassador earns points, which unlocks discounts and other perks in Tookki partner brands’ e-shops.

The Tookki app allows users to search the nearby area for sustainable establishments and includes a map. Details such as opening times and phone numbers are also included. In addition to the app, Tookki also offers ‘green’ experiences, such as zero waste workshops and 100 per cent organic meals. These are intended for companies to use for away days and perks.

Read more about Tookki.

travel and tourism business ideas

7. NURSING HOME PATIENTS USE VR TO ‘TRAVEL’ AND BOLSTER SPIRITS

Kenta Toshima, a researcher at the University of Tokyo’s Research Center for Advanced Science and Technology Inami-Hiyama Laboratory, has developed VR technology that allows elderly and nursing home patients to travel to places in the world they once visited or wish to see.

The experiment started when, working in a nursing home, Toshima was inspired to take panoramic images and videos with the 360-degree camera, which could be viewed through a VR headset by the care home resident. This idea grew in popularity.  

The aim,  according to Toshima , is to help and inspire elderly patients who are prevented from travelling due to physical or mental impairments, or who wish to reminisce on past experiences from the safety of their care home.

“The VR experience makes them feel like they are out of the nursing home and can help ease their anxiety and loneliness,”  he said in a conversation with Insta360.com,  whose camera he used to shoot the panoramas. The process of creating the shots also involved Toshima adding narration and names, to put the viewer at their ease.

Read more about the VR experience.

Written By: Holly Hamilton

20th November 2020

travel and tourism business ideas

Tourism Business Ideas: How Travel Enthusiasts Can Make Money

Tourism Business Ideas - Tosinajy

Are you looking for tourism business ideas? Do you desire to set up a business in the tourism sector but with a low initial investment?

You’ve landed on the right article. For most economies, the tourism business is a substantial source of revenue.

The tourism business has grown, allowing individuals to take advantage of resources that were previously unavailable, resulting in new revenue streams. Let’s get started if you want to build a business that complements your desire to be on the go.

In this post are profitable tourism business ideas you should consider if you’re looking to make from tourism.

Quick Reviews

If you’re short on time and want to get right to the point, here are the best tourism business ideas to consider:

  • Airbnb Business
  • Hotel and Lodge
  • Airport Transportation
  • Souvenir Shop
  • Vehicle Rental Company
  • Tourist Guide
  • Travel Specialist
  • Luggage Delivery
  • Helicopter Charter Service
  • Travel Blogging
  • Language Translation Services
  • Virtual Travel Agent
  • Canoe Rental Service
  • Pilgrimage Travel Agency
  • Photography Business
  • Personal Bodyguard
  • Bed and Breakfast

SEE: Best Business to Start With 10k

Best Tourism Business Ideas

This section provides a comprehensive overview of the best tourism business ideas discussed in this article.

1. Airbnb Business

The Airbnb business model is a service that allows people to stay in another person’s apartment. Several tourists are looking for accommodations that are a little more customized and one-of-a-kind.

Unlike a hotel or guesthouse, Airbnb rentals give you the feeling of being at home. Guests can stay for as little as one to two days or as long as two weeks.

Airbnb is an excellent method to supplement your income, particularly if you have spare rooms or space in your home.

You’ll have visitors staying at your house, so you’ll need to be comfortable conversing and mingling with them.

Most homeowners who travel regularly rent out their properties while they are away. This permits them to earn money while having their home watched over when they are away.

SEE: Best Travel Jobs for Those Who Enjoy the Thrill of Traveling

2. Hotel and Lodge

When visiting any town, visitors must, without a doubt, look for somewhere to stay. Provided they find a host who is willing to put them up for the duration of their stay.

As a result, hotels and lodges are a very important business in tourist cities. One of the first things travelers learn when they arrive in a tourist town is where to find the closest hotel and lodge.

The reality is that if a tourist destination does not have conventional hotels and lodges, it will likely draw fewer guests.

Therefore, as an investor, one of your possibilities is to invest in hotels and lodges if you want to create a tourism-based business.

3. Airport Transportation

People use airport shuttles to get from the airport to their hotels, houses, or where they left their cars.

Business travelers, teams, families, and lone riders all use airport shuttles. The driver picks up passengers at a prearranged spot and drops them back wherever they are needed.

Normally, each route has no greater than two stops. Vehicles are often capacious, with plenty of space for passengers to keep their belongings.

Individuals with the desire to create their own tourism business and a desire to communicate with others would be the greatest candidates for this venture.

Given the amount of time spent on the road, an entrepreneur who loves driving would be an excellent fit.

4. Souvenir Shop

Another tourism business idea that is incredibly beneficial in each tourist town is a gift shop.

As a token of their stay, many visitors would choose to purchase local crafts, one-of-a-kind presents, or native clothing, among other items, from a tourist town.

As a result, if you’re looking for a tourism-based business to start in a tourist town, try launching a souvenir shop with local crafts and native clothes, among other things. Just make sure your souvenir shop is in a good location and looks appealing.

5. Vehicle Rental Company

Automobile rental is one of the most profitable tourism business ideas, especially in small towns and villages. There are no swift and dependable transportation options in small towns and villages.

As a result, passengers will require transportation to go to their destination. All you need is a fleet of cars, some employees, and a convenient location.

You should especially target travelers, but the rest of the population will naturally come to your vehicle rental service as well.

6. Tourist Guide

Becoming a tourist guide is one of the tourism business ideas that an entrepreneur can effectively launch with little or no investment.

To be profitable in this line of business, you must be able to communicate in at least one or more international languages.

This might be in any of the following languages: English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, or German. You must also have a good understanding of the terrain.

Once you’ve established that you can properly communicate or translate, all that’s left for you to do is establish yourself in areas where tourists may be found.

This may be in a hotel lobby. Of course, you’d have to haggle with the hotel management or through a travel and tour company’s referrals.

7. Travel Specialist

A travel specialist is not the same as a travel agent, despite their similar professional names. A travel specialist is someone who specializes in resolving difficult travel problems.

They might, for example, focus on assisting adoptive parents with travel abroad. This is to make the process of adopting a child from another nation go as smoothly as possible.

They could also help firms with more difficult tasks, such as catering to other cultures during commercial transactions.

Travel specialists are typically less concerned with tourism and more concerned with resolving logistical concerns.

8. Luggage Delivery

Starting a luggage delivery business is one of the low-cost investment tourism business ideas you may want to consider if you’re looking to make money from tourism.

The luggage delivery industry exists to assist travelers in avoiding the inconveniences of baggage merry-go-round queuing and security screening.

In truth, luggage delivery firms go above and beyond to accommodate their customers’ luggage needs. All that is required of the consumer is to load their trip clothing and other stuff into the luggage.

The luggage delivery firm takes and stores their belongings on their behalf. They also assist with the online encoding of the contents so that the owner can change the contents in preparation for a future trip.

9. Helicopter Charter Service

It is not given to everyone to start a helicopter charter enterprise. The business necessitates a significant investment in the copter, as well as maintenance and license.

In addition, the company requires the appropriate marketing plan as well as the necessary money to accomplish it.

10. Travel Blogging

Do you have a strong desire to travel and possess good writing skills? If yes, then you should think about beginning your travel blog.

Blogging on almost any topic is an excellent way to start a business, but it’s especially enjoyable for travelers. You can discuss the incredible experience of visiting exciting locations all over the world.

SEE: How To Make Money Blogging

11. Language Translation Services

Another lucrative tourism business idea that someone wishing to start a business in the travel and tourist industry may consider is language translation services.

To be successful in this type of business, you must be able to communicate in at least one or more foreign languages.

French, English, Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese, or German, as well as other regional languages, are all possibilities.

So, if you want to make money from the tourist industry’s commercial value chain, you should consider beginning a language translation service.

One of the advantages of this form of business is that it may be started with little or no initial investment.

SEE: How to Make Money Speaking Another Language

12. Virtual Travel Agent

The days of travel agency offices are long gone. The truth is that planning a trip is now easier than ever owing to the internet. Hundreds of flights, hotels, and restaurant bookings are available to anyone with a computer.

Although the ease of access is appealing, the time required to sift through all of the possibilities may not be feasible for everyone.

This is where a virtual travel agent may help. Since you’ll be working from home, the customer will save money on overhead expenditures.

Virtual travel agents can assist busy people to arrange their next holiday from anywhere in the world for a lower cost.

Assist them in booking the best hotels and unusual activities, as well as providing them with the necessary travel arrangements and documentation.

13. Canoe Rental Service

Essentially, you can establish a canoe rental business in a tourist area with seas. You’ll also need to have qualified people for personal help in addition to the watercraft.

In this business, tourists who wish to appreciate the natural visual splendor of the water are essentially your potential clientele.

Offer instruction on hiking, camping, sightseeing, fishing, or picnicking as a value-added service.

14. Pilgrimage Travel Agency

Simply put, if you want to build a specialty tourism company, this is a good place to start. Packaged trips and individual tours with a variety of value-added attractions are available from pilgrimage travel firms.

A large portion of the population spends a significant amount of money visiting religious sites. And in this business, that demographic is your target audience.

15. Photography Business

Like me, you must have snapped a lot of photos when visiting a different country as a tourist. To see your photos, you have to go to a photography development enterprise.

If you notice such stores flourishing in your tourist-heavy town, you could open one of your own to make some money.

In case you don’t know how to print images and don’t want to learn right away, you can hire someone who does.

SEE: How to Make Money with Photography

16. Personal Bodyguard

The great majority of visitors will never require this service. When visiting a new place, however, some people prefer a certain level of security.

Particularly if they’re transporting valuable stuff or visiting a risky or unknown region. Perhaps they are a star who needs to be accompanied carefully by someone familiar with the area.

17. Bed and Breakfast

This is, without a doubt, one of the most successful tourist business ideas that require little capital. When you picture beds & breakfasts, you generally conjure up images of enormous ancient houses with multiple rooms.

To provide a location for travelers to stay, you only require a single room with a bathroom. You can market your B&B directly or list your rooms on a website like Airbnb.

In the bed and breakfast enterprise, the owner’s attitude and personality are critical. Also, the location in which you start your business is crucial.

Travelers will anticipate breakfast and possibly an afternoon snack or tea, in addition to a clean place to sleep.

It’s a great way to meet new people, showcase your hometown, and learn about other cultures.

What exactly is a tourism business?

Leisure activities combined with business travel are referred to as tourism business. Business travelers are less cost-conscious than leisure travelers, spending twice as much each day on average.

Is a license required to start a tourism business?

While some tourism business ideas do require having an operating license and setting up brick and mortar shops, others do not.

Tourism business ideas like being a tourist guide, language translator, and starting a travel blog, do not require you to have an operating license.

While businesses like bed and breakfast, canoe rental service, helicopter charter service, and vehicle rental business require having an operating license.

The tourism industry has developed into one of the most lucrative sectors. Even though this post contains a plethora of tourism business ideas, the greatest advice I can give you is to choose a business idea that you are passionate about and have expertise with.

However, before you start your tourism business, you need to have a well-thought-out strategy in place. As well as a set of distinct services that set you aside from your competitors.

I recommend that you check out this post that will reveal the best travel jobs if you enjoy traveling.

Thanks for reading,

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travel and tourism business ideas

Top 5 Business Ideas for Travelers

Travelers don’t have to choose between income and their next adventure. You can easily combine your love for exploration with entrepreneurial opportunities while on the road. Here are five business ideas for travelers to try this year.

Travel Blogging and Vlogging

For travelers with a passion for writing, starting a travel blog can be a rewarding business idea. Share your adventures, travel tips, and student advice for college travelers, like, ‘ Where to find the best coursework writing service? ’ and unique experiences with a global audience. Monetize your blog through advertising, sponsored content, affiliate marketing, and selling travel guides or e-books.

As you build a following and credibility, you can also offer freelance travel writing services to magazines, websites, and travel companies. Your ability to capture the essence of different destinations through words can become a profitable career while allowing you to explore new places.

In addition, if you're comfortable in front of a camera and enjoy creating video content, consider starting a travel vlog or YouTube channel. Document your journeys, share travel tips, and showcase the beauty of your destinations. As your channel grows in popularity, you can monetize it through YouTube's ad revenue, sponsorships, and affiliate marketing.

Collaborate with travel brands and tourism boards to feature their products or destinations in your videos. This business not only allows you to fund your travels but also builds a dedicated online community of fellow travel enthusiasts who follow your adventures and recommendations.

Travel Photography and Videography

If you have a talent for capturing stunning images or creating captivating videos, consider a business in travel photography and videography. Offer your services to fellow travelers, travel agencies, or even local businesses in tourist destinations. You can sell your travel photos and videos through stock photo websites, create travel-themed content for social media, or collaborate with brands for sponsored travel campaigns. Your work could take you to incredible destinations while generating income.

Remote Travel Consultancy/Guide

Many travelers are overwhelmed by the complexities of arranging a trip, from booking flights and accommodations to crafting the perfect itinerary. You can leverage your extensive travel experiences to offer remote travel consultancy services. Many people are looking for personalized travel itineraries, advice on hidden gems, and cost-effective travel planning. You can become a trusted resource for these individuals seeking seamless and memorable adventures.

You can provide tailored travel recommendations, help clients find the best deals, and assist with booking accommodations, flights, and activities. With the rise of remote work, you can run this business from anywhere in the world, making it ideal for avid travelers.

Thus, this unique venture allows you to share your deep knowledge of various destinations with individuals and groups from around the world, all while you're on the move.

You can also work as a virtual tour guide. You will conduct real-time, taking your clients on interactive, virtual tours using your smartphone or camera. Your storytelling skills and local insights will bring the destinations to life, allowing travelers to immerse themselves in the experience from the comfort of their homes. You can offer specialized tours based on your expertise, be it cultural, culinary, or adventure-focused.

The beauty of this business is its flexibility , allowing you to work from virtually any location and make money while you explore the world yourself.

Online Travel Marketplace

Take the concept of an online travel marketplace a step further by specializing in a niche area. For example, you can create a marketplace dedicated exclusively to eco-friendly travel products, sustainable accommodations, or adventure travel experiences. By catering to a specific segment of travelers, you can become an authority in that niche and attract a passionate customer base.

Promote responsible and sustainable tourism practices while connecting travelers with businesses that align with their values. This specialization can set you apart in the competitive travel industry and allow you to positively impact the world while earning income.

Freelance Writing and Content Creation

Freelance writing and content creation provide an ideal business avenue for travelers looking to blend their passion for exploration with their creative skills. It allows you to work from anywhere while generating a reliable income and doing what you love while helping others. For example, writing articles like sometimes-interesting.com/how-to-write-a-stunning-admission-essay/ can help students apply for their dream college. Isn’t it a rewarding job?

As a freelance writer, you can offer your writing services across a range of niches, leveraging your travel experiences to craft compelling articles, blog posts, web content, coursework service, and social media materials. Specializing in travel writing offers additional monetization opportunities, including advertising on your travel blog, sponsorships from travel brands, and affiliate marketing. You can also diversify your services by providing content strategy consulting to businesses seeking a robust online presence.

With the freedom to structure your work around your travel schedule, freelance writing and content creation enable you to earn while embracing your wanderlust, whether in a European café or sunbathing on a tropical beach.

Final Thoughts

Your perfect business idea for traveling should combine your love for exploration with entrepreneurial opportunities and personal skills, allowing you to turn your passion into a profitable venture. Choose the one that aligns best with your skills and interests to start your journey in business and travel.

Read next: Tel Aviv to Cologne flights

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Top 9 Travel Trends & Innovations in 2024

How are the latest trends in the travel industry reshaping trip planning and enhancing tourist experiences in 2024? Explore our in-depth industry research on the top 9 travel trends based on our analysis of 3500+ companies worldwide. These trends include AI, immersive tourism, IoT, contactless travel & more!

Technological advancements in the travel industry meet the growing demand for personalized experiences, safety, and sustainability. Post the COVID-19 pandemic, emerging travel trends mark a shift towards contactless travel through digital payments, self-check-ins, and more. Additionally, artificial intelligence (AI), the Internet of Things (IoT), and blockchain are automating various hospitality and travel-related operations.

For instance, smart hotels make use of internet-connected devices to remotely control rooms. Further, businesses offer virtual tours by adopting extended reality (XR) technologies like virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR). Travel companies also leverage data analytics to personalize marketing. At the same time, traveler assisting solutions like chatbots and voice technology aid them in booking accommodation and optimizing journeys. These travel trends improve the overall profitability of the tourism industry and enable it to make operations more sustainable and safe.

This article was published in July 2022 and updated in February 2024.

Innovation Map outlines the Top 9 Travel Trends & 18 Promising Startups

For this in-depth research on the Top 9 Trends & Startups, we analyzed a sample of 18 global startups and scaleups. The result of this research is data-driven innovation intelligence that improves strategic decision-making by giving you an overview of emerging technologies & startups in the travel industry. These insights are derived by working with our Big Data & Artificial Intelligence-powered StartUs Insights Discovery Platform , covering 2 500 000+ startups & scaleups globally. As the world’s largest resource for data on emerging companies, the SaaS platform enables you to identify relevant startups, emerging technologies & future industry trends quickly & exhaustively.

In the Innovation Map below, you get an overview of the Top 9 Travel Trends & Innovations that impact travel & tourism companies worldwide. Moreover, the Travel Innovation Map reveals 3 500+ hand-picked startups, all working on emerging technologies that advance their field.

Top 9 Travel Trends

  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Immersive Tourism
  • Internet of Things
  • Contactless Travel
  • Big Data & Analytics
  • Post-Pandemic Tourism
  • Tour Premiumization

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Tree Map reveals the Impact of the Top 9 Travel Trends

Based on the Travel Innovation Map, the Tree Map below illustrates the impact of the Top 9 Travel Industry Trends in 2024. Startups and scaleups are enabling contactless travel using technologies like biometrics, radio-frequency identification (RFID), and near-field communication (NFC). This is due to increasing health and hygiene concerns post the pandemic. The use of AI in tourism ensures hassle-free trip planning while AR and VR allow tourists to virtually visit various locations and excursions. IoT increases visibility into tourism industry operations and allows passengers to track their luggage more efficiently. Further, the demand for personalized and luxurious travel is rising. Several startups enable recreational space travel as well as offer sustainable travel options to passengers.

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Global Startup Heat Map covers 3 635 Travel Startups & Scaleups

The Global Startup Heat Map below highlights the global distribution of the 3 635 exemplary startups & scaleups that we analyzed for this research. Created through the StartUs Insights Discovery Platform, the Heat Map reveals that the US, Europe, and India see the most activity.

Below, you get to meet 18 out of these 3 635 promising startups & scaleups as well as the solutions they develop. These 18 startups are hand-picked based on criteria such as founding year, location, funding raised, and more. Depending on your specific needs, your top picks might look entirely different.

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Interested in exploring all 3500+ travel startups & scaleups?

Top 9 Travel Trends in 2024

1. artificial intelligence.

Hotels employ intelligent chatbots, powered by AI, to provide quick and personalized responses to traveler inquiries. These chatbots simplify the booking process and gather customer reviews, aiding potential travelers in making informed decisions. Moreover, AI-based robots enhance the customer experience by automating hotel disinfection and delivering room service.

At airports, these robots guide travelers and assist with luggage handling. Facial recognition technology, driven by AI, expedites identity verification at airports, enhancing security and offering a swift alternative to traditional methods. Startups are developing AI-powered trip planning solutions, optimizing journeys, and personalizing travel experiences.

Travel Professor develops a Travel Chatbot

UK-based startup Travel Professor offers an AI-enabled chatbot for travelers. The startup’s chat widget software monitors multiple flight deals and notifies users when their preferences match. It also provides travel destination recommendations and flight price alerts. This allows travelers to book economical flights and have a budget-friendly tourism experience.

Pneuma Travel facilitates Travel Planning

US startup Pneuma Travel develops a voice-assisted digital agent, Sarah , to streamline the process of travel planning. This assistant, powered by AI, excels in arranging flight and accommodation bookings and assists travelers in discovering a variety of activities. Sarah , available round the clock, provides continuous support for all travel-related inquiries.

Moreover, Sarah customizes travel options according to individual preferences and budgetary constraints. The agent further enhances the travel experience by providing insights into local attractions in unfamiliar cities. Importantly, Sarah enables real-time modifications to travel plans, in compliance with specific airline policies, thereby minimizing waiting times for users.

2. Immersive Tourism

Immersive tourism caters to the growing demand for meaningful experiences among travelers, leveraging AR, VR, and mixed reality (MR). VR simulates original locations through a computer-generated environment, allowing tourists to virtually explore destinations. It provides travelers with a comprehensive 360-degree tour of points of interest.

AR enhances the travel experience with interactive elements such as navigation maps and ads. Travel companies employ AR and VR-based gamification to heighten tourist attractions. Moreover, these technologies enable hotels and resorts to present amenities and rooms in an engaging, interactive manner.

VR Travel Expo offers VR-based Travel Plans

US startup VR Travel Expo develops a VR travel application to transform the way people research and book travel. The application enables users to plan their vacations more efficiently. It provides an engaging platform for users to explore and expand their knowledge of the world. Moreover, it employs 3D geospatial technology that creates real-time digital twins of the world. This further enhances the travel planning experience.

AR Tour makes AR Glasses

Italian startup AR Tour offers AR-powered tours. The startup’s AR glasses superimpose reconstructed images of archaeological ruins to show how the site originally was. Its tour informs the tourists about the site’s history and significance via an audio-visual package. Moreover, the startup designs lightweight AR glasses to prevent motion sickness among tourists, improving convenience.

3. Internet of Things

IoT generates ample data that tourism companies leverage to personalize services in their subsequent visits. Hotels use IoT sensors to enable smart rooms that automate room lighting, temperature, and ambiance control, enhancing guest comfort. These sensors adjust appliances in vacant rooms, conserving energy and reducing the building’s carbon footprint.

Startups harness IoT to deliver location-specific information to customers, including real-time luggage tracking via IoT tags, minimizing lost items. Airlines also incorporate IoT-based solutions into seats, monitoring passenger temperature and heart rate for proactive health management.

Altitude enables Smart Hotels

New Zealand-based startup Altitude creates an IoT-based hotel software and hardware to develop smart hotels. The startup makes self-service kiosks to automate reservations, room up-gradation, payments, as well as check-in and check-out. Its hotel management platform further enables contactless engagement with guests. Additionally, Altitude’s mobile keys allow guests to open doors using mobile phones, providing convenience and saving time for travelers.

Smart Tour provides Smart Itineraries

Brazilian startup Smart Tour offers smart itineraries using IoT and quick response (QR) codes. The startup recommends travel routes and destinations based on the user’s preference in real-time. This facilitates a seamless experience for travelers. Besides, the user-generated data enables tourism managers to better understand consumer behavior and indulge in proximity marketing. The startup also offers a contact tracing solution to monitor COVID-19 infected travelers and ensure public safety.

4. Contactless Travel

Travelers benefit from contactless recognition technologies like retina scanning, which replace traditional travel documents, speeding up passenger identification and reducing airport queues. QR codes offered by travel companies allow tourists to access relevant information on their mobile devices, enhancing engagement.

Hotels have introduced contactless self-check-ins, enabling visitors to arrange services before arrival. Additionally, contactless payment modes are available in hotels and restaurants for swift and secure transactions. Moreover, wearable devices are transforming the travel experience by providing real-time notifications and touch-free access to services and information.

Loxe designs Smart Hotel Keys

US-based startup Loxe makes smart mobile keys for hotels. The startup’s smartphone app replaces key cards with contactless mobile keys that allow users to unlock doors using smartphones. It also reduces operational costs incurred in the manufacturing of conventional keys or plastic cards. Moreover, the startup designs a Bluetooth retrofit module that converts normal door locks into mobile-ready door locks. This allows hotel owners to easily convert their existing locks into smart ones without additional expenses while improving guest safety and convenience.

Avendi provides Contactless Payment

Singaporean startup Avendi offers contactless and cashless payments for travelers. The startup allows tourists to accumulate expenses throughout their trip and pay at the end of the journey. Avendi’s app utilizes QR codes to add all the billed expenses and shown through its dashboard. The user settles the tab amount in the preferred currency, preventing the inconvenience of cash withdrawal or credit card payments.

5. Big Data & Analytics

Big data empowers travel companies with customer trends for strategic marketing. Analyzing traveler behavior, they offer tailored recommendations for hotel bookings, cab hires, flight reservations, and ticket purchases.

Predicting future demand is another advantage of big data and analytics, helping hotels and airlines identify peak periods to optimize revenue. Advanced analysis of transactional data aids in detecting cyber fraud, and safeguarding sensitive customer information such as credit card details and biometric data.

CheckandPack creates a Travel Platform

Dutch startup CheckandPack offers a big data travel platform. It runs marketing campaigns to gather traveler data and understand tourism trends. Based on these insights, the platform enables businesses to approach travelers with a customized appeal. It also provides travelers with holiday planning.

3Victors provides Travel Data Analytics

US-based startup 3Victors offers travel data analytics. The startup’s product, PriceEye Suite , proactively monitors the prices of numerous airlines to provide insights into competitor prices. It creates a dashboard to display travelers’ location of interest, allowing travel airlines to better manage their revenue and pricing strategy.

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6. Post-Pandemic Tourism

Post-pandemic tourism focuses on safe, sustainable, and flexible travel options, responding to evolving traveler preferences and health guidelines. Enhanced health and safety protocols, including regular sanitization and contactless services, become standard in airlines and hotels, ensuring traveler confidence.

Destinations and operators emphasize outdoor and less crowded experiences, catering to a heightened demand for nature-based and wellness travel. Flexible booking policies and trip insurance gain prominence, offering peace of mind amid uncertainties. Sustainable travel gains traction, with tourists and businesses prioritizing environmental impact and community well-being.

GOPASS Global enables Pre-travel Risk Management

Singaporean startup GOPASS Global provides a travel risk analytics platform against COVID-19. It analyzes the biosecurity risk elements involved in a trip, such as border restrictions, quarantine requirements, airport type, and airline transit points or seating in real-time. This allows travelers to assess risk factors and plan their trips accordingly.

Moreover, the startup creates world maps displaying information regarding COVID-prone areas, testing areas, and vaccine coverage. This provides travelers with a preview of the current situation, allowing them to ensure safety during business and leisure travel.

Workcations enables Work from Anywhere

Indian startup Workcations provides properties at tourist destinations for remote-working individuals. It offers amenities like internet connectivity, food, and a quiet ambiance, allowing tourists to work in a peaceful environment without hindrance. This increases employee productivity, motivation, and retention.

7. Tour Premiumization

Hyper-personalization in travel experiences is on the rise, with tourists eager to immerse themselves in diverse cultures. Luxury travelers enjoy tailored experiences and intuitive services through tour premiumization. Health and wellness packages offered by travel startups help tourists unwind.

These retreats enhance health and offer detoxifying food options. Space tourism is another exciting development, offering leisure or research trips to space. Lastly, travel startups are fostering customer loyalty and building strong relationships through membership or subscription models.

STOKE provides Space Tour

US-based startup STOKE facilitates space travel using everyday-operable rockets. The startup’s rockets are reusable and deliver satellites to any desired orbit. This enables on-demand access to space, paving way for space tours for exploration, recreation, and research. The startup also emphasizes the economical and rapid development of its hardware for feasible spacecraft launches, advancing space tourism.

Origin offers Travel Personalization

Dutch startup Origin provides premium travel personalization to tourists. The startup utilizes machine learning and travel curators to plan creative vacations. It also arranges flights and accommodation for travelers. Further, the startup measures the carbon output of itineraries and offers sustainable tourism options.

8. Ecotourism

Traveling responsibly minimizes tourism’s environmental impact and supports local communities’ well-being. Ecotourists strive to reduce their carbon footprint during their journeys. Startups contribute by developing sustainable transport, ecolodges, and solar-powered resorts.

Airline passengers have the option to offset carbon emissions during flight bookings. Local tourism stimulates small businesses economically and creates job opportunities. It also emphasizes minimum littering, which lowers pollution and the time spent on cleanups.

Jet-Set Offset simplifies Flight Carbon Offset

US-based startup Jet-Set Offset creates a carbon-offsetting platform for air travel. The startup partners with non-profit organizations working against climate change and connects them with travelers. Each time travelers book flight tickets via the startup’s platform, Jet-Set Offset contributes a certain amount per mile for their journey to environmental organizations. This way, the passenger’s journey promotes mileage-based donations to offset carbon emissions.

The Green Stamp facilitates Ethical Wildlife Tour

Dutch startup The Green Stamp provides a platform to book ethical wildlife tours. It curates tours based on the tourists’ inclinations toward certain locations or wildlife. Exploration of these projects allows travelers to indirectly contribute to their cause as these wildlife projects donate to the welfare of local communities and the environment.

9. Blockchain

Blockchain provides the travel industry with operational transparency and security. Traceable payments, particularly for international travel, are a key application, that fosters trust among parties involved in transactions.

Automation and enforcement of agreements in travel insurance and supplier contracts are achieved through smart contracts. This strengthens reliability and cuts administrative costs. Travel firms establish customer loyalty programs where points are exchanged for cryptocurrency. Lastly, blockchain increases data storage security, reducing the risk of information leaks.

Upswing facilitates Guest Profiling

Indian startup Upswing creates AURA , a blockchain-powered platform for guest profiling. It provides a holistic view of guests, their preferences, and purchase patterns. The platform associates a score with each guest and suggests improvements in their service. This facilitates hotels to provide a personalized experience to their guests and, in turn, increase sales.

UIQ Travel develops a Solo Traveling App

US-based startup UIQ Travel develops a blockchain-based app to connect solo travelers. It discovers people with shared interests and suggests tours or attractions. Such hyper-personalized recommendations assist in experience discovery and also increase traveler engagement.

Discover all Travel Trends, Technologies & Startups

Tourism, although severely impacted by the pandemic, now continues to rapidly grow across the globe. Post-pandemic trends indicate an increasing emphasis on hygiene and safety during travel. The industry is witnessing the widespread adoption of disruptive technologies like AI, XR, IoT, and blockchain. The travel industry utilizes big data to understand traveler trends for targeted marketing. The transition to ecotourism is accelerating as businesses integrate zero-emission transit and carbon offset programs to reduce their carbon footprint.

The Travel Trends & Startups outlined in this report only scratch the surface of trends that we identified during our data-driven innovation and startup scouting process. Among others, personalization, decarbonization, and travel safety will transform the sector as we know it today. Identifying new opportunities and emerging technologies to implement into your business goes a long way in gaining a competitive advantage. Get in touch to easily and exhaustively scout startups, technologies & trends that matter to you!

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$1,780 to Spend the Night in a ‘Cocoon’? Hotels Are Betting on Sleep Tourism.

A.I.-assisted beds, on-call hypnotherapists and sequestered guest rooms, including one inside a stainless steel sculpture, are taking sleep tourism to the next level.

travel and tourism business ideas

By Carla Sosenko

To sleep, perchance to dream. Or if not dream, at least to feel vaguely rested the next day, especially on vacation. Is that too much to ask?

For many people, yes. The United States is tired , according to the National Sleep Foundation, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institutes of Health , and there is a link between poor sleep and depression, the N.S.F.’s 2023 Sleep in America poll found.

In the hospitality world, that’s a business opportunity. Hilton’s 2024 trends report revealed that the main reason people currently travel is to rest and recharge.

“Hotels locked in a death match with Airbnb have begun to explore ways in which to compete by offering services and amenities around the primary purpose of a hotel stay: a restful night’s sleep,” said Chekitan Dev, a distinguished professor at the Cornell University Nolan School of Hotel Administration.

“The earlier paradigm of a vacation was that sleeping was the most boring thing you could do while on holiday,” said Kaushik Vardharajan, an associate professor at the Boston University School of Hospitality Administration. “It is only during the last 10 years or so that we have as a society started talking about the importance of sleep from a health and wellness perspective.” Now, he said, a good night’s rest isn’t just a selling point for hotels; it’s a “whole fast-growing industry.”

From A.I.-assisted beds to on-call hypnotherapists, today’s sleep tourism is, essentially, an old dog with new tricks. “This is around the seventh or eighth time this has come up as kind of a topic” since the mid-1980s, said Bjorn Hanson, an adjunct professor at the New York University Jonathan M. Tisch Center of Hospitality. Even before that, luxury hotels introduced perks for better sleep, like pillow menus in the 1960s. Other amenities (blackout curtains, white noise machines) followed.

These days hotels are going well beyond those basics to capture the business of sleep seekers. Here’s what some are doing.

Smart beds and SmartGoggles

Like the Westin Heavenly Bed , which experts point to as an industry game changer when it was introduced in 1999, Bryte wants to be the next hotel-mattress disrupter.

The $6,299 A.I.-assisted, smartphone-pairable mattress is, according to Luke Kelly, the chief executive of Bryte, the only bed with an active pressure-relief system, which adjusts as you move to optimize deep sleep.

Mary Bemis, a journalist who lives in the Pacific Northwest, recently slept for two nights on a Bryte bed at Carillon Miami Wellness Resort . “It really surprised me,” she said, specifying the way the subtle rocking of the mattress “hit the right notes. It brought me back to a baby stage.” She also liked the Somnify feature, which syncs movement with soundscapes (she chose lightning and thunder), and said her jet lag was less of a problem than usual.

The Park Hyatt New York currently has five Bryte sleep suites (from $1,095), which were added after the hotel reopened following a 376-day Covid closure. There were a lot of staycationers coming in from the regional areas, said Patricia Galas, senior director of marketing communications. Their goal was no longer catching a few winks on a business trip or vacation, she said. Cooped up, bored, sleep-deprived locals wanted a change of scenery and guaranteed rest.

Ms. Galas said that she and her team worked with Bryte on best-sleep practices, like setting the thermostat to 68 degrees and recommending that guests have a warm pre-bed bath (with calming Le Labo bath salts) and chamomile tea.

The Park Hyatt Chicago has the similar Bryte-bed-equipped Mindfulness Suite ($645), as do a handful of rooms and suites at hotels, including the Little Nell , in Aspen, Colo., and the Rosewood Miramar Beach , in Montecito, Calif.

With the Sleep Wellness package at the Beatrice in Providence, R.I. (starting at $419 per night), you’ll have to settle for a Serta Perfect Sleeper , but will have access to Therabody SmartGoggles , an eye mask that uses heat, massage and vibration to lower your heart rate and ease facial tension. The package also includes a mocktail at the rooftop bar (alcohol is an enemy of good sleep) and herbal teas.

In a darkened room lit in deep purple, two women in sports clothing and wearing headphones rest on reclining loungers. Their eyes are closed. White light emits from around the edges of the cushion on which they lay. One wall is a simulation of a night sky with many stars.

Retreats and other programs

At the Carillon, where Ms. Bemis stayed, all of the hotel’s 150 apartments ($695 for a one-bedroom, $995 for a two-bedroom) feature Bryte beds. But perhaps even more intriguing is the spa’s five-treatment sleep circuit ($99 per treatment), which employs, among other things, infrared light, electromagnetic frequencies, salt floats and vibration. The resort’s new four-night Sleep Well Retreat ($2,598) includes all of the above, plus a sleep-promoting massage, and access to the thermal hydrotherapy circuit, which features an herbal sauna, a rain room and loungers warmed by radiant heat.

In October 2022, Canyon Ranch Tucson hosted its first Mastering Sleep Retreat, a five-night program that includes a sleep assessment followed by sessions with board-certified M.D.s, registered nurses and dietitians, and spiritual wellness providers with Ph.D.s and masters in divinity. The idea is to get to the heart of whatever is causing poor sleep. Once guests leave, they can stay in touch with a virtual health coach. (This year’s retreats will be at Canyon Ranch’s Lenox, Mass., location from April 28 to May 3, $8,800 per person, and Tucson sometime in the fall.)

‘Cocooning’

Relaxing the mind is a common theme in sleep tourism, but how each property tries to accomplish that varies. Ms. Galas said the bedrooms at the Park Hyatt “cocoon” away from the living space, meaning you can close off the sleep area and make it dark and cozy; Britain’s Zedwell hotels, a rare bargain entry, feature small, dimly lit “cocoons” (from 112 British pounds, or about $142, for one person) with nary a distraction from the window to the wall: no TVs, no phones and, actually, no windows, which for a certain kind of bad sleeper could provoke more anxiety, not less.

Tempo by Hilton is offering rooms divided into three zones, including “an enveloping sleep environment” with a Sealy Accelerate temperature-controlled mattress and sound-absorbing acoustics; lights that dim at sunset; and, in some rooms, Peloton bikes, for people who consider exercise their Ambien.

At the Conrad Bali , guests can book a private 60-minute SWAY session in the spa (starting at 1,500,000 rupiahs, or about $95), which entails lying in a swinging, aerial, swaddled hammock that looks a lot like an actual cocoon. The rocking is meant to mimic floating on a cloud or being in the womb.

At the Beaumont in London, travelers can stay in perhaps the cocooniest room of them all, called, simply, ROOM (£1,402 per night, or about $1,780), a 745-square-foot suite inside a three-story stainless steel sculpture of a crouching man at the hotel entrance. It lacks a TV, a phone, even wall art. The goal of the British sculptor Antony Gormley, who designed ROOM, is for guests “to achieve a meditative stillness, to lose a sense of one’s body in the darkness and to allow the mind to expand.”

You are getting very sleepy

This month, to coincide with the N.S.F.’s Sleep Awareness Week (March 10 to 16), the Mandarin Oriental will begin a partnership with the hypnotherapist Malminder Gill, a.k.a. the Sleep Concierge, at the Hyde Park property in London . (After Hyde Park, the service will be available at the Mandarin Oriental in Mayfair, which opens this spring, followed by pop-ups across Europe, New York and other destinations later this year.) Starting at £500, guests can see Ms. Gill in the spa for a sleep consultation and session tailored to their particular sleep issues, with Ms. Gill even recommending optimal mealtimes and food-ingestion order. There will also be an option for a private bedside session, during which, if all goes well, guests drift off for the night.

“I tiptoe out,” said Ms. Gill. “I know that sounds really bizarre.”

The Royal Sonesta Benjamin New York has a similar program, called Rest & Renew, run by Rebecca Robbins, co-author of “Sleep for Success! Everything You Must Know About Sleep but Are Too Tired to Ask.”

And Hyatt hotels in New Zealand and Australia now feature the Sleep at Hyatt program, with Nancy H. Rothstein, a.k.a. the Sleep Ambassador, as its guru. For $49.50, guests can add a Sleep Ritual Pack (bath salts, eye mask, tea, pulse-point aromatherapy roll-on); for $190, they can purchase a pair of Dreamers, blue-and-green-light glasses that filter out the melatonin-disrupting rays that emanate from screens if you’re a nighttime scroller. Of course, that might mean falling asleep in a pair of specs, which for a chronic tosser-and-turner could be counterproductive.

The experts’ view

What sticks and what doesn’t in this round of sleep tourism remains to be seen. Joseph M. Dzierzewski, vice president for research and scientific affairs at the National Sleep Foundation, wonders why, for example, special sleep amenities aren’t standard in every room.

“The hotel should be providing an environment for people to sleep,” he said. Isn’t that the whole point of a hotel? In addition, “you have to view sleep from a 24-hour time frame.” As important as it is to slumber in a dark room, he said, you also need exposure to bright morning light. “A lot of people forget about how important the day is for your nighttime.”

Dr. Jing Wang, medical director of the Mount Sinai Integrative Sleep Center , thinks the puzzle of better sleep can be solved for most people if they learn what’s at the root of their troubles, whether it’s sleep apnea or psychological issues. Getting educated at a posh resort instead of a hospital sleep lab may sound nice, but the key, she said, is follow-through and follow-up. Without them, there’s little chance for lasting change.

“If you go through the list of our sleep hygiene recommendations — quiet, dark, relax your mind, don’t think about the things that are bothering you during the day — it’s easy for me to say,” Dr. Wang said. But it can be hard for a lot of people to do these things. In that way, sleep tourism makes sense because it allows you to “leave your regular environment and go to one that does incorporate some of these healthy sort of sleep routines,” Dr. Wang said.

Similarly, Mr. Dzierzewski points to one common affliction — getting stuck in a bad-sleep rut — that a short, snooze-centric hotel stay might fix. “Perhaps you just need a hard reset if you’re stuck in a never-ending spiral. Poor sleep begets poor sleep begets poor sleep,” he said. “If you can stop that cycle, perhaps there could be some enduring positive change. But without additional information about how you got in that cycle in the first place, I question whether or not you’ll have any long-term benefit.”

What none of these hotels, mattresses or retreats can do, is permanently remove from your bed smartphones, crying children, mental to-do lists, existential dread and other common sleep thieves.

And of course, not everyone can afford $500 or more to get a good night’s sleep.

Follow New York Times Travel on Instagram and sign up for our weekly Travel Dispatch newsletter to get expert tips on traveling smarter and inspiration for your next vacation. Dreaming up a future getaway or just armchair traveling? Check out our 52 Places to Go in 2024 .

Open Up Your World

Considering a trip, or just some armchair traveling here are some ideas..

Italy :  Spend 36 hours in Florence , seeking out its lesser-known pockets.

Southern California :  Skip the freeways to explore the back roads between Los Angeles and Los Olivos , a 100-mile route that meanders through mountains, canyons and star-studded enclaves.

Mongolia : Some young people, searching for less curated travel experiences, are flocking to the open spaces of this East Asian nation .

Romania :  Timisoara  may be the most noteworthy city you’ve probably never heard of , offering just enough for visitors to fill two or three days.

India: A writer fulfilled a lifelong dream of visiting Darjeeling, in the Himalayan foothills , taking in the tea gardens and riding a train through the hills.

52 Places:  Why do we travel? For food, culture, adventure, natural beauty? Our 2024 list has all those elements, and more .

Industry resources and tools

Experience development program.

  • New tourism business or idea
  • Working with travel trade
  • Enhance your business
  • Sector development

Turning innovative tourism ideas into reality

The Experience Development Program will support local tourism operators to develop and sell their latest new tour, accommodation or experience idea.  Designed to provide tourism businesses with the tools they need to deliver world class tourism offerings, the program will support up to 20 operators across the state, available at no charge to the business. Two people per participating business can take part. The new pilot program will launch in May, with tourism operators invited to participate via an expression of interest process which will open from 9.00am, Tuesday, 2 April 2024 to 5.00pm, Monday, 15 April 2024 .

Sign up to our Industry Update newsletter to keep up to date with industry news and announcements.

A white tour bus drives past the Pink Lake on South Australia's Eyre Peninsula. It is a bright, sunny day with the dazzling pink waters of the lake, sparkling in the sunshine.

Expression of Interest Guidelines

These guidelines are provided to assist you with preparing a response for the Experience Development Program's Expression of Interest process.

Program overview

The program consists of three modules, and each module will be delivered as a workshop:, module one: developing your tourism product, module two: selling your product, module three: perfecting your pitch.

This module introduces businesses to the program and includes an overview of the visitor economy, pricing and commissions, packaging and collaboration, competitor analysis, unique selling points, and consumer behaviours and expectations.

This module focuses on selling and marketing tourism experiences to the world. It includes best practice principles when working in the dynamic tourism trade and distribution system. 

This module integrates the learnings and practical outcomes from the first two and prepares operators to develop an ‘elevator pitch’ for their new experience. Real-time support, direction and feedback from industry experts will help operators to perfect their sales pitch, ready for tourism trade and networking events.

Who can apply?

This new pilot program is open to all South Australian tourism businesses who meet the following criteria:

  • Have a registered Australian Business Number (ABN) at the time of response and have the legal capacity to enter an agreement with the Government of South Australia.
  • Have not previously attended the Australian Tourism Exchange (ATE).
  • Have a business plan, with financial and marketing plan included.
  • Have the capacity and resources available to commit to the three (3)-month program, including the in-person and virtual modules, and out of session work.

A woman stands next to a white van on a sunny day, looking at the coastline in the Dhilba Guuranda-Innes National Park in South Australia's Eyre Peninsula.

Terms and Conditions of Enrolment

All participants must read and agree to the Terms and Conditions of Enrolment in the Experience Development Program which you can access here.

Frequently Asked Questions

If you own an established tourism business that is already online bookable and selling to domestic trade, this program may not be the best fit. This program is designed to assist businesses to understand product development and develop their capability. 

The program consists of three (3) modules and each module will be delivered as a workshop for each participant to attend. Two of the workshops will be in person, and the third will be held online. For full details, download the Expression of Interest Guidelines .

The workshops will be held across regional South Australia and run by SATC staff. Exact locations will be determined and confirmed once the applicants are finalised. 

Yes, contact your local Regional Tourism Manager or the SATC [email protected] for further information.

This program will not assist operators with writing an application for grant funding, however it will assist operators to develop a world class tourism product or experience. Many funding programs require robust product development planning and/or demonstrated experience delivering outcomes.  

Priority will be given to applicants that can confirm attendance at all three module workshops. We understand that at times circumstances may change, and the SATC will work with the applicant individually to support alternative ways to attend at that time.

No, there will not be marked assessments. 

No, there is no financial cost to an applicant to take part in the program, however applicants must be able to commit their time to attend three module workshops and complete around 10 hours of work outside of the SATC-led sessions, to further refine their tourism experiences.

Yes, new businesses with a registered ABN can apply. There will be some assumed knowledge in the program that includes business fundamentals. If you are starting a new business and are not quite ready for the EDP, the SATC has a suite of tools for new businesses which can assist.

Developing a business plan can assist prioritising business objectives, goals and a road map to develop and sustain your business. The Australian Government has resources and templates available to help support the development of a business plan. To access these, please click here .

Highly experienced SATC staff will run the program and mentor applicants. Our staff have first-hand experience in running small tourism businesses, marketing, events, business development and international trade.

This program is for experiences and product development. If your new accommodation features an experience element, this could be a right fit. If not, the SATC can still assist you. We encourage you to email us  [email protected] to set up a time to discuss further with our staff.

To take part in the Experience Development Program pilot, you will need to have a valid ABN at the time of application. If you are looking at getting started in tourism and understanding the industry, we would recommend looking into some of the SATC’s  tools to get you started .

SATC staff can assist with product development enquiries. Please email us: [email protected] .

Yes, but you must already have or wish to further develop packaged/bookable experiences beyond a room booking. For example, hosted tours, food and wine experiences or all-inclusive packages.

There are 12 tourism regions in South Australia, each supported by a local Regional Tourism Manager. Contacts for your local Regional Tourism Manager can be found here .

For enquiries about the EDP, contact the South Australian Tourism Commission at: 

[email protected]

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