Tomorrow our Programme Team travels to Barcelona in preparation for the Booking Booster Lab this weekend! That being said, today we still get to introduce the next startup participating in the Booster Lab, subcultours. Subcultours is a company that offers creative experiences to travellers, allowing them to step into the the world of local artists and creative entrepreneurs. Meet the creatives living in the city - hear their stories, learn their craft, and take away your own creation on one of subcultours many experiences offered in Berlin, Dresden, Leipzig and even Costa Rica. After running a successful kickstarter campaign gaining them €4,500 and participating in the Startup Porto Accelerator, subcoulturs joins us this Friday.
We spoke to Katja, CEO and founder of subcultours, about the company and their goals to connect travellers to creatives and support the local arts landscape. This is what she told us:
What triggered you to start subcultours?
When I traveled to San José, Costa Rica, I was disappointed with the lack of culture and creativity at first sight. It was not until I had stayed there for a while that I realised how many interesting artists and creative entrepreneurs actually work there. The situation is just that most of the creative locals work from their home and have no direct touchpoint with the travel community. After seeing so many private homes and creative workspaces of artists and creative locals, I wanted to create a way for travellers to meet and support these creative souls. That’s how subcultours came into my mind - a way for interested, conscious travelers to get to know the persons who create the local, typical artwork, culture and subculture.
The last 5 years I lived in 8 different countries and travelled to more than 30. I know the travel industry very well and have a lot of cultural experience. I'm an artist myself and almost all my friends are artists and creative entrepreneurs. I live and breath the vision and mission of subcultours.
What is subcultours and what impact does it have on the travel industry?
Subcultours brings travellers behind the scenes, into the private homes and workspaces of local artists and creative entrepreneurs, to meet, inspire and learn from each other. Our goal is to create mutual understanding and respect, on the one hand, and on the other to help sustain the local sub/cultures of a country. Subcultours are creative experiences which consist of a workshop and a personal storytelling part (e.g. visit in the artist’s favorite bar/café/park; tour in the artist’s hood). They can be easily filtered according to the traveller’s preferences (in terms of location, category, date, price, age, purpose, quantity of travelers) and booked via our web application. With subcultours we want to help people to travel in a more sustainable way by giving back to the local community and supporting the local sub/cultures and unique, traditional hand crafts. We live in the era of globalisation, with that comes standardisation and commercialisation. We consume faster, travel faster: fast food, fast fashion, fast travel. While we focus on the short-term gain (being faster, spending less), we often forget that this also has a cost - a cost the next generations need to pay. The local sub/cultures, traditions and craftworks which have been built over decades will slowly but steadily disappear if we do not allow ourselves to slow down and appreciate them.
We change the world of travel to "travelling sustainably" by supporting all local craft workers, artists and creative entrepreneurs. In the globalised world, we want to emphasise this community building and connect people with different backgrounds, cultures and passions to meet, learn from each other and inspire each other. We want to help as many people as possible to find their passion and not only chase money in their life.
What recent milestones are you most proud of?
We have a number of things to be proud of. In 2016, we completed a successful Kickstarter campaign. We now have a network of +100 participating artists in San José (Costa Rica), Berlin, Dresden, Leipzig (Germany) and Porto (Portugal), and have partnerships with key hotels, hostels, tour operators and City Marketing. We are also a part of the Startup Porto Accelerator.
We’re excited to have subcultours with us this weekend to examine sustainable tourism and grow and scale their business and impact with the 10 other amazing startups. Look back on yesterday’s blog on STUDIOMAPP and stay tuned the rest of the week for the final participant profiles!