I bet that when Martin Talač founded his Slovakation travel agency, he had no idea that in a few years he would be the manager of the Vacatuner mobile platform, which he himself, resp. his travel agency, initially wanted to use. Due to the current situation with the coronavirus pandemic, travelling was first put aside, then postponed until there was a big silence around it. And so, the time has come to improve what is currently slowing down, because nothing lasts forever and we need to have backpacks ready. Let’s see how Martin’s practical experience has turned into a real product and how they work together.
Martin, how did you come to work on Vacatuner?
I was originally WEZEO’s client. I wanted my travel agency and clients use Vacatuner. But the coronavirus outbreak started and travel began to be postponed until there was a big silence. In the summer they called me from WEZEO and asked if I would be interested in managing this product and I decided to accept their offer.
What exactly are you in charge of?
I am Vacatuner’s product leader. Wezeo is in charge of the software development for the Vacatuner application and I am developing its functionality and strategic direction. I try to expand the Vacatuner in other directions so that it can be used by more target groups as well. I also communicate with clients. Vacatuner is currently designed for travel agencies, resp. the application is ultimately used by the clients of the particular travel agency.
How do you perceive your new job position?
The beginnings were challenging, as I didn’t know anything about IT world. When the guys talked about something that was technical in nature, I didn’t understand what they were talking about. But now, after those few months, it’s fine, I have already established myself and I know how things work in the company.
Can you please introduce, Vacatuner to me? What is it all about?
Vacatuner is a mobile app designed to bring tourism opportunities through technology. It is a combination of travel know-how and technology. It is an opportunity for holidaymakers to enhance the travel experience with travel agencies. And an opportunity for travellers to share their travel experiences and make them available to a wide audience.
How does Vacatuner work?
The application is primarily intended for travel agencies and their clients. If the travel agency’s client buys a vacation package, we will make the application available to them. They will have all the information there and can find any details about the purchased trip. (Insert screenshots from the application).
They will find there everything they need to know about the trip from start to the end. For example, during a sightseeing tour, when every day has a different program, in this app you will find a schedule and program for every single day, contact on the guide/delegate … Simply, you do not have to search for hours for all that information in your emails… Everything is on in one place. A messaging feature has also been added, so you can contact the guide at any time and send a message to the them via the application. The application will also offer the holidaymaker various optional trips in the given holiday area so that they can make their holiday even more interesting. We can run the application according to the client’s wishes, it is functional and we will customize it according to the client’s resp. travel agency’s wishes. Every travel agency has this platform under its own branding. It works like that. As travel agency’s client you receive an invitation in the e-mail to download the app. After downloading it you will enter the password and everything will be displayed to you.
In addition to travel agencies, we would like to make the Vacatuner platform available to travellers who create their digital itineraries and give them the opportunity to sell them via Vacatuner. And we would also like to make it available to tourism organizations that are in charge of the tourist destinations marketing. For example, the marketing the whole area of Tuscany in Italy or Paris in France.
What happens after the holiday? What then?
When your holiday is over, you will receive a notification asking you about your satisfaction with the application and you can use the Vacatuner to give the travel agency your feedback on what was good and what they can improve in the future.
What do you think makes Vacatuner unique?
There are not many such platforms. Our advantage is that we are willing to make a unique application for the client, which is exactly the way they expected. Every single application is “tailor-made”, it is not unified.
Do you also see any disadvantages of your product?
Vacatuner requires well-digitized processes and data on all vacation packages in the travel agency’s offer, which can be a problem in some cases and can make the integration of a Vacatuner application for a travel agency more difficult.
You are a man from the travel industry. What are the benefits of having Vacatuner?
One of the benefits is the fact that the client finds all practical information in one place and does not need to ask the guide 10 times the same. It makes the work of the tour guide easier. It also looks good. When I, as a travel agency, send information to the client with the application where you can find everything, it’s not just an ordinary e-mail which is the same as from any other travel agency.
Thanks to Vacatuner, the client can remember the travel agency, it is a more modern form of travel and improves the relationship with the travel agency. As a travel agency, you have a better chance of the client using your services again. Thanks to Vacatuner, we can collect information about the customers’ travel, we can help travel agencies through notifications. I will give you an example. If you keep the Vacatuner application installed as a travel client, you can get a special discount because you are a loyal customer. Through Vacatuner, the travel agency can keep their customers and motivate them to use their services again.
To be unique is to be seen. And those who are seen will not get lost, which is an amazing advantage when traveling. With Vacatuner, you will definitely have 100% holiday experience.