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Tourism, foodie culture, and the new wave of startups

How do you choose where to vacation? For many, attractions determine the destination - a famous museum, an amusement park, or an important historic site. Today, however, we're seeing many travelers for whom the attractions take a back seat to the local cuisine. From five-star restaurants to the street food scene, foodie culture is transforming travel. This kind of travel is an extension of the larger culinary scene that's been seeking to elevate our daily dining experiences, bringing fine dining to a larger audience.
Unsurprisingly, startups have taken note of the food-driven travel trend and have come out in droves to support this culinary subculture. From the craft brewery scene to destination-driven food tours, startups are helping travelers track down the best food in town.

Tapas tours and more

One of the core challenges when developing a food-driven startup is the intensely local nature of culinary activities. That’s why many startups, such as Spain-based Foodie&Tours, begin by targeting select, familiar regions and then expand based on the response.

Foodie&Tours specifically markets culinary tours and tastings in Spain. From cooking classes to wine tastings, the company is excited to help travelers find the most delicious ways to spend their days. For now, they’re offering a real taste of Spain, but the company looks forward to helping travelers experience the greatest flavors available across the globe soon.

Gustatory gallivanting

Of course, with a tool like Foodie&Tours, travelers are on their own when it comes to organising the greater arc of their trips. For those hoping to get a little more guidance developing, don’t worry, there’s a startup for you.

With Intrepid Travel’s Real Food Adventures, travelers can get a sense of the local food scene at an affordable price. The company focuses on developing tours around local markets, farms, bars, and even home cooking, and aim to use public transit to get travelers from point A to point B. It’s a truly grassroots experience, and one they’ve been expanding around the globe since 2013.

Filter for food

You can tell just how popular food-driven tourism has become in recent years by looking at seemingly separate aspects of the travel experience, such as booking a hotel. Though most foodies aren’t looking to eat at the hotel restaurant, high-end accommodations are raising their game to the extent that travel sites like Trip.com let you filter for foodie-friendly lodgings. Just a few years ago, it wouldn’t have occurred to marketers to make this pitch – the audience wasn’t big enough. There’s been a real shift in the culture.

Bringing the beer

The craft beer industry is a vibrant, rapidly growing corner of the food world, and has even spawned its own brand of tech-oriented startups. Just as you can summon dinner from home using an app like GrubHub, complementary apps such as Minibar and Klink will bring you the craft beer and spirits of your choosing. This is an especially handy tool for those traveling by car and hoping to experience the local brewery scene without having to drive back to their hotel.

A taste of home

Finally, for those who want to make new friends during their culinary adventure, there are startups like Grubwithus that encourage the creation of interpersonal connection as much as delicious food. Grubwithus helps you find people to dine with wherever you are, bringing everyone together for family-style meals at local restaurants. You can meet up with other travelers, find locals who share your interests, and seek out many different types of food – and you pay for it all in advance so you can just enjoy your time at the table together.

Foodie culture is a powerful force, and all of these startups can attest to that. If people weren’t traveling in a passionate pursuit of food, they wouldn’t exist. So next time you travel, what will you do? With so many delicious resources at your fingertips, it may be time to plan a culinary adventure.

8 Dec 2016 10:54

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About Boris Dzhingarov

Boris Dzhingarov graduated UNWE with a major in marketing. He is the CEO of ESBO ltd brand mentioning agency. He writes for several online sites such as Tech.co, Semrush.com, Tweakyourbiz.com, Socialnomics.net. Boris is the founder of MonetaryLibrary.com and cryptoext.com.




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