2019 was a surprising year for the team at YouLive to Travel. We are a global team, but our development team is based in Melbourne, Australia 🦘. Thankfully we are not under direct threat from the fires, but we appreciate all the concerned messages we’ve received.
🐨If you are interested in donating to the bushfires, we recommend donating to the volunteer firefighters via the CFA. 🔥
If you’re really serious about helping, we strongly recommend you plan a trip to Australia, the tourism industry is bracing for a slowdown as people assume the entire country is on fire. But Australia is big, and there are still many places you can visit and your travel spend will help the local businesses thrive!
Since we are safe, we’ve had some time to ponder the highlights and incredible moments from 2019.
These were the seven most surprising moments for our team in 2019.
7. All Packages now with UNLIMITED TRIPS
We launched the YouLi platform with limits based on the number of itineraries you run each year. But we listened to our clients and realized that we didn’t want to be mis-aligned with our customers’ goals. We want you to run more trips!
So, in August of 2019, we decided to change ALL our packages to included UNLIMITED TRIPS!!! Even Jen was surprised when it became obvious that was the right choice.
6. Launched in the UK for Enterprises
We launched into the US in June 2019. Our foundation client in the US is Global Family Travels, a fast growing, impact-driven business that uses YouLi travel management software to keep track of their trips and travelers all in one place.
We were then given the opportunity to launch in the UK in October 2019 in partnership with CompassionUK, a leading children’s charity with 66 years experience in fighting poverty. After a lengthy evaluation process, they selected YouLi as the only white-labelled solution that would allow a large team to effectively manage growing demand for trips for their community of compassionate donors. The YouLive to Travel team is thrilled to support CompassionUK as they roll out YouLi across their full team and deliver over 40 trips a year.
5. Processed $1.5 Million in Bookings
Can you believe it? That brings our total to $3 Million bookings processed since we launched our booking platform (also know as Trip Pages).
We are committed to ensuring our premium clients keep as much of their bookings as possible. That’s why we changed our entry level premium package to be 0% YouLi Booking Fee as of December 2019. Get paid fast with zero commission.
It is such a great validation of our philosophy to see how many bookings have been #poweredbyyouli
4. Launched Transformational Travel Council Marketplace
We realized in 2019 that we were not the right ones to build the demand side of a marketplace, but we ARE the right team to build the tech side of a marketplace. That’s why we partnered with the Transformational Travel Council (TTC) to deliver their curated marketplace with trips from 16 of their mentors.
Our founding vision is that people are the best judge of the best kinds of experiences, and we want to make technology available for them to reach their audience. That’s why we were so delighted to work with Transformational Travel Council to ensure they can focus on what they do best: designing transformational travel experiences. While we focus on what we do best: ensuring the technology doesn’t get in the way. YouLi Marketplace solution is all you need to launch your own niche travel marketplace.
3. Women In Travel Summit
As part of our launch in the UK, I was able to fit a visit in a side trip to WITS Latvia. This was the first European Women in Travel Summit, hosted by Wanderful. This was an incredible event and I highly recommend it for any woman working in travel. I have never felt more welcome at a conference full of strangers! My presentation on “Tech, Tools And Tours: Finding The Right Platform For Your Travel Business” was met with warm applause, and the Latvia tourism board was an amazing host. I would love to go back in the warmer months and explore more of the countryside. I also missed the bathhouse experience, so that’s reason enough to return.
We also got a good deal on a global wifi device that we’ll be testing on an upcoming trip to Morocco as part of our field test of our new mobile app. Shhhh…it’s not ready for general usage yet. 😉
I was also interviewed for the Globetrotter podcast, where I give the very wise advise: “don’t poke a snake, especially in Australia, but generally in any country you visit”. It’s a fun little chat, so give it a listen!
2. Women Changing the World Through Travel
For me, the ultimate surprising event of 2019 was our Women Changing the World Through Travel. After months of doing virtual meetups with our community of passionate group leaders and business owners, we decided we needed to come together in person. So many of you came out and were inspired by travel entrepreneurs like Stephanie Woollard and Bibi Jellema. They told their stories and encouraged all of us to think about how we can use travel to make the world a better place. I couldn’t have asked for a better night to celebrate what we value as a company.
1. We are on a “Watch-List”
In November 2019, the Travel Massive global community of travel industry founders, leaders, and creators, has named YouLi among the “50 Travel Startups To Watch In 2020”.
The list contains the most promising travel startups from all over the world, so we our proud to see that our vision for YouLi to have a global impact is being recognized!
What’s Will the 20’s Bring?
I can’t wait to see what surprises await us in 2020, even thought there will be dark headlines, we plan to shine a light on the beautiful work being done to use travel as a force for good in this rapidly changing world. We at YouLive to Travel are eager to power more unique experiences in 2020 and be part of the positive change that is sweeping us into the new decade.