Tubayo, a Dynamic StartUp Leading the Travel Industry’s Journey to Recovery

Launched in January 2019, Tubayo has developed into a popular brand in the Ugandan travel space. Reknown for its trendy and adventure-filled experiences, Tubayo has invented new and futuristic concepts as well as a capacity to handle several hundred bookings at a go and still give every user a worthwhile experience.

Travelers have been using the Tubayo App from Playstore to discover and book great trips & experiences. The platform is designed such that travel hosts and tour operators can be better prepared for the looming digital transformation. The core purpose is to streamline their (hosts and operators) businesses from payment to tapping into smart marketing tools and customer insights gained from the platform to acquire, retain and engage with consumers online.

In the wake of the global pandemic, economic effects of COVID-19 present inevitable short-term challenges to the travel industry. Amidst this however, Tubayo seeks to advise on the opportunities created by the wind of change.

Firstly, we ought to know that travel is here to stay. Since time immemorial, man has had the urge to move and the imparted gene has made travel part if our very nature. For society to function and business(trade) to thrive at levels close to normalcy, travel has to resume! Travel is therefore ceaseless and inevitable. Ugandans in particular are reknown for their adventurous nature. As people who love a good time “Parte after Parte” , many cannot wait to resume what we do best. This is an opportunity for tour operators to accelerate the growth and recovery of travel. Tubayo provides a great platform for users to find good selection of experiences and adventures listed by different hosts and tour operators.

A group of young people share a light moment during a Tubayo Experience. Tubayo is a hot and trendy platform among young travelers.

Secondly, the reduction of numbers of foreign tourists is pushing the local tour operators to innovate and create new business and fair price models for activities/ trips to attract the local traveler. This is an opportunity to better engage the huge potential of over 25 million customers (Ugandans between of 10years and 65years). The local demographic has often been ignored while stakeholders design clientele experiences but the inevitable situation brings the industry back to its very own. At Tubayo, local operators, hosts, businesses and people have the opportunity to design packages best suited and compatible to local tourists.

Additionally, we ought to appreciate that the future is about efficiency. While normal tour business operations have been disrupted, it’s time to move on to the new normal, that is the embrace of online digital business. An effect of this departure is the restructuring of companies to reduce on the size of the team in order to focus the limited business resources on more urgent needs of the business such as client experience. One way to do this is to create packages and list trips/experiences on a travel marketplace like tubayo.com to access travelers.

Fourthly, due to the agency nature of online platforms, there is an opportunity for people to earn income by way of being a host or host business. This could particularly benefit the unemployed, a demographic that has surged with the Covid-19 crisis. At Tubayo, for example creatives can design exciting activities that people want to try such as food tours, baking classes, yoga, photography, biking experiences among others and list them on tubayo.com for free to access travelers. This can be the beginning of building a great business from a simple passion.

In the same vein and in the light of Covid-19, Tubayo has developed relief measures to support hosts and tour operators overcome this challenging time. 

The platform is offering;

• Free online training to new travel hosts to prepare them for the digital transformation.

• Introduced virtual tours/ flexible online hosting opportunities to generate income.

• We’ve reduced our commission fees & business operation fees such as advertising costs.

• Subsidies for tour guides, photography personnel and reduced cost of hiring of our tour vans.

• Additional tools for businesses to accelerate digitization with remote working management.

Since the very beginning, Tubayo’s success has always depended on the success of our partners. We are confident in the ongoing digitalization on of society as highlighted in this crisis period and are ready to seize the opportunity to build the foundation to accelerate the long-term recovery and growth of Uganda’s economy.

Brian Namanya
CEO – Tubayo


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