The past few years have posed new challenges for tourism due to the pandemic. The trillion dollar travel market came to a standstill overnight as the whole world started frantically imposing mandatory lockdowns and travel restrictions.
Travel trends have recently changed drastically to adapt to the "new normal". A significant increase in internet usage and online activities has also been observed during this period. Bangladesh currently has a major portion of the population accustomed to online food delivery, grocery shopping, ride sharing etc. services. The global tourism sector stood at a value of 1.09 trillion USD with online travel bookings contributing 450 billion USD to the industry as of 2019. As the world moves towards a digital future, online travel booking is gaining increasing popularity. A company dynamically implementing technological innovations to solve online travel problems in Bangladesh is GoZayaan.
GoZayaan's mission from the beginning has been to make travel more convenient for travelers. The company has seen many ups and downs from the dawn of its journey as the pandemic brought tourism to a halt. However, GoZayaan's data driven approach soon enabled them to understand that even though international travel was at a standstill, domestic tourism was flourishing. They focused on the people's need to travel domestically and brought hotels, small tour operators, inter-city buses etc on their platform to cater to every need of the traveler. Not only that GoZayaan has always worked dynamically to be in pace with the ever-changing travel scene. It brought about various innovative solutions to its platform starting from Travel Insurance to establishing "GoSafe" program which caters to various questions of travelers and works as an avenue for various travel updates. The idea is to cater to all the needs of a traveler and bring about innovative solutions to on-going problems faced by the modern traveler. This strategic move helped the company grow nearly 10 times during the pandemic. They further launched the GoZayaan app to give travelers easier access to their services. The glaring need for online booking solutions is proven by our very own neighboring country India as market leading OTAs such as MakeMyTrip, Yatra etc dominate their travel market. Bangladesh has huge potential not only regarding inbound tourism in Bangladesh, but the international market as well. With this in mind the company took a leap overseas to neighboring country Pakistan by acquiring an online travel tech platform.
While GoZayaan is set on going global, the question often arises - "Why Pakistan?". The answer lies within the similarities of the travel trends in both nations. Pakistan's internet penetration rate and education rates are both on the rise, promising a favorable future for tech based operations in the region. Geographically, both countries show resemblance in land terrain and climate, although Pakistan's area is almost 6 times that of Bangladesh. Pakistan's tourism sector is dominated by inbound tourism but most of the industry still operates offline. Both countries also show equivalent consumer behavior with similar holidays and travel preferences. The combined inhabitants of Bangladesh and Pakistan equals almost 60% of the population of South East Asia which makes this acquisition a truly smart move for GoZayaan giving the company a chance to become one of the major player in the tourism industry of South Asia. GoZayaan saw the huge potential of this region and used it as their basis to expand abroad and spread innovations made right here in Bangladesh across South Asia.
Throughout tremendous success, GoZayaan's motto has remained the same - safe and flexible travel for all. The company wants to continuously bring tech-enabled innovations to the market for the whole world to use. The technology created right here by Bangladeshi
youths is being used beyond borders to solve problems worldwide. GoZayaan expanding operations overseas sets the stage for future deals overseas and a new era of travel for Bangladesh.
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