Swiss sustainable travel company Viatu wants to take the hard work out of booking an adventure by utilising API and data-driven technology to save you having to book through various different sites for multi-day trips.
The company founded in 2020 by Alfredo Seidemann, Johan Bodenstein and Bárbara Büchel has an emphasis on sustainable travel as it helps users manage the impact of their travel by having them sign the ‘Viatu Travellers Pledge’ which outlines responsible tourism practices, including cultural and environmental considerations. The platform also has been integrated with offsetting API Squake which powers precise carbon calculations for all types of activities, including self-drive stretches and hotel stays.
It has raised a seed round of $1 million which was led by Ndoto LLC and includes participation from ASI Reisen and angel investors. Funds will be poured into further development of the platform.
“We are big believers in Viatu’s vision to make sustainable travel simpler and easier for everyone. Viatu has proven that travel can be a force to enrich local communities by offering opportunities, as well as helping to promote self-expansion and an appreciation for the natural world around us," says Susan Miller, co-founder of Ndoto LLC.
Viatu aims to transform a process which could take up to two weeks, either individually or through a travel agent, into something that will take minutes. For example, we had a situation where a customer’s flight to Costa Rica had been cancelled, so they ended up planning and rebooking an entirely new two-week trip to Namibia while at the airport using Viatu, and within the hour they were boarding a flight to Windhoek," says Büchel.
“We created Viatu to take the guesswork and extensive manual labour out of booking sustainable travel, and empower travellers to become an active force in enriching local environments, economies, and communities. The additional funding will allow us to further develop our platform to make arranging an adventure holiday from your smartphone as easy as booking a taxi or ordering a takeaway," she says.