Why book with a DMC?

 

 To book direct, or not to book direct: that is the question

When you are planning an incentive or corporate event abroad, you might find yourself thinking “Why should we book with a local DMC when we can find so much information and book by ourselves over Internet? “What is the real value of booking with a ground handling company?”

Those are two very good and relevant questions! We now live in a ‘connected world’ and it is quite easy to source direct contact details of hotels, restaurants, venues and activity providers in the destination online.  But by arranging all this yourself you are missing out on the key value of using a local DMC, namely their local knowledge! In this article we hope to shed some light on the benefits of using a local DMC and help you choose what options is the best for you!

But first let’s have a quick look at our philosophy.

“Transparency is the new currency of trust”

At Travel Out There we believe in giving our clients as much information as possible.  Albert Einstein quoted that “The Only Source of Knowledge is Experience”. All of the Travel Out There team are highly experienced in the Tourism and Events industry and are very keen to share their knowledge with you! From the moment you arrive on our website, throughout the booking process and during you experience with Travel Out There.

We accept that we generate two types of browser to our website – ‘The Researcher and The Purchaser’.   It is obvious that we are always eager to turn a researcher in to a purchaser but the Travel Out There team is happy to inform the researcher as much as possible about the destination.  We believe that primarily Travel Out There are promoting each of our destinations and secondly the Travel Out There experiences in the respective city. We hope that the information you find on our website might encourage you to visit the destination for your corporate event. Hence developing a desire and a trust that the destination is suitable for your event.

 

The benefits of a Local DMC

Whether you have visited the city before or it is completely unknown to you, we have listed some fundamental reasons why you should seriously consider booking with a Local Ground Handler.

Local Knowledge

Living, working and experiencing the destination as all our local experts do day to day it is evident that they:

a) know more than you do
Besides knowing the city, what’s hot and not, and staying updated with newly opened places, all of the Travel Out There Event Managers have inspected the hotels, eaten at the restaurants, managed events in various venues and experienced all the activities. As Travel Out There’s slogan states you have to ‘Experience it to Believe it’. Before any service is included on our website it has to be checked out to guarantee that it is up to standard for all of our valued clients.

 

 

b) they are better connected than you

Our local event managers have many years of experience in the travel and event management industry both in their countries and abroad. Meaning, they know whom to call to make your special request and ideas possible, get that extra good price or book that otherwise inaccessible venue.

c) they have access to benefits you can’t get otherwise and can often beat any other prices available

Having the assistance of Travel Out There Local Expert can also make you an instant VIP through the connections that we have made working in the MICE industry for such a long time.  We will always work hard on your behalf with our contacts to grant free room upgrades, hard to get restaurant reservations, cutting lines, access to otherwise closed experiences, exhibitions and private guides.

 

Booking with a local DMC will also

Save you time

Ask yourself: How valuable is your time? The time it takes to co-ordinate a corporate event, dealing with multiple providers, in a foreign language, as well as international call charges you begin to realize that booking with a local partner will actually save you both money and time!

Provide a safety net

After you have planned everything, a local manager provide a safety net during your trip that you simply won’t get by booking yourself or buying insurance. Our event managers assure that all of the activities and venues are well arranged and live up to expected standard. In other word, there will be no unpleasant surprises. And if something unexpected should happen, a last minute cancellation or bad weather for your outdoor activity, our local managers will always have a back up plan ready and prepared.

Give you a tailor made experience:

At Travel Out There we do not believe in selling bespoke packages or off the shelf experiences. We like to give our clients exciting incentive ideas and inspirational concepts that we then work closely with you to tailor make a proposal to your exact needs and requirements. We specialize in creating and forming unique team building activities, and we can make basically any activity in to a team building experience (read our previous post how we look at team building)

 

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When does an activity become a team build?

At Travel Out There, we believe that potentially any group activity can become a team building experience with the added fundamental element of a post event debrief.

Different activities can focus on developing varying levels of Key Out Comes. Some examples of team building outcomes:
• embrace creativity
• support managing change
• improve communication
• raise moral by having some fun

By identifying the desired key outcomes, the facilitator can tailor the Team Building experience accordingly. The strength or level of team building is also then established and this is reflected by hardness or softness of the experience.

Hard Team Building experiences, one could say become ‘corporate training’, have very extensive and detailed debriefs to evaluate performance and areas for development. The debriefs can be in the form of 1-2-1 assessments and written reports based on findings. Where as softer experiences tend to work on less formal approaches where group team discussions and simulated networking opportunities naturally leads to improved communication and increased morale.

When does an activity become a team build and then a training

When does an activity become a team build and then a training

The key role of the facilitator  is to ensure that the activity has been tailored to the clients needs and that they are equipped with the right tools to monitor the team’s performance in accordance with the desired outcomes. Great Team Building Facilitators simply know what the right questions to ask, whether in printed or verbal format. Encouraging participants to share the challenges they faced, both as a team and as individuals and explain how they overcame them. They can incorporate some form of award ceremonies where teams can be rewarded for excellence.

We have created a Team Building Barometer that you can view by clicking here. This helps you decide on what team building activity is most suitable for your team!

 

The Death of Traditional Sightseeing

Traditional sightseeing is dying. Because let’s face it, why would you want to spend your money and time on passively following around a tedious guide, or just sitting on your behind in an open-tour bus and watch the main sightseeing points from a far?

Traveling is about experiencing, no matter if you do it for leisure or business purposes. And the only way to truly experience something is through interaction.

That is why interactive sightseeing, combined with gaming and team building makes for a fresh and great solution.

Picture this:

You and your team are handed a tablet with an interactive map of the city. The main goal is to answer correctly on as many questions as possible within the given time. Each question is marked on the map but only appears once you are at the exact spot, meaning you will get the perfect sightseeing walk of the city while finding the questions.

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The question could be of different kinds:

  • Place specific, for example: “Who does the statue on the right portray?” where you will get to learn more about the city and its history.
  • Interactive, as in “What is the name of this place in the local language?” where you will have to interact with the locals
  • Company specific, developed together with your company. It could be on the topics from an earlier workshop, a video message from the boss or questions about products etc.

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TEAM BUILDING ASPECTS

Apart from being a fresh and exciting way to explore an destination it is also the perfect team building activity, as it is built up around the following learning points:

  • Defining effective processes to solve the problems
  • Discovering the power of a common team language
  • Responding quickly and efficiently to change in order to win the overall challenge
  • Increasing effective communication
  • Improving team effectiveness

RESULTS

  • Highlight focus and commitment
  • Empower individuals
  • Set team standards

We provide the City Code Game in all of our destinations.

The Power of Games

Gamification is a word that has been on everyone’s lips the last few years and yet we have probably just seen the beginning of it. Experts even claim that gamification is the biggest thing since Social media!

 

SO WHAT IS GAMIFICATION?

It is the use of game thinking and game mechanics in non-game contexts to engage users in solving problems. The technique is built around the fact that it engages human’s natural desire for competition, achievement, status, self-expression, altruism and closure.

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STAGGERING NUMBERS

It is estimates that the overall market for gamification tools, services, and applications will reach  $5.5 billion by 2018 (M2 Research) and that 70% of the world’s 2000 biggest companies will have deployed at least one gamified application by the end of this year.

Gamification can be applied to almost any area, at the work place to increase employee productivity, in marketing and customer retention, improving engagement on website and for schools and education purposes just to mention a few. Basically gamification helps to make fun tasks even more fun and turn boring tasks into entertaining and engaging ones.

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At Travel Out There we have adopted gamification to create interactive sightseeing and fun team building activities. You can read more about our City Code Game in our previous post. Another example of a gamified- team building activity is our City Snakes and ladders. 

CITY SNAKES AND LADDERS

GAME - SNAKES AND LADDERS

Do you remember the board game Snakes and ladders? Now imagine that the game-board is the city centre, game fields are virtual locations around you and game pieces are real people.  The game is all about getting from start to finish with as few steps as possible.

Game fields have the ladders and snakes attached to them. Instead of throwing the dice players answer a question at every field they stop at. Right answer moves the team forward and wrong backward.

If the team knows all the answers they can actually plan their way to finish by just answering right and wrong as needed.  That is, if they know all the answers. You only see the question when it is time and place to answer them.

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TEAM BUILDING ASPECTS

Not only with the interaction and game elements of this activity help to engage all your employees, the team building outcomes of this game are also plenty.

KEY LEARNING POINTS

  • Plan your route
  • Implement your plan
  • Review when something goes wrong
  • Define effective processes to solve the problems
  • Discover the power of a common team language
  • Respond quickly and efficiently to change in order to win the overall challenge
  • Increase effective communication
  • Improve team effectiveness

 

RESULTS

  • Highlight focus and commitment
  • Empower individuals
  • Set team standards

Our team building activities can also be customized to fit your wishes, so if you have any favorite board game that you would like to try out like this, let us know and we will do our best to make it happen!

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