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  • Top 3 target markets for taxi services targeting tourists

Top 3 target markets for taxi services targeting tourists

Launching a taxi app for tourists? Great choice! Tourism is a fruitful niche to choose for a ride-hailing business.

3 target markets for taxi services targeting tourists

  • Tourists prefer ride-hailing apps: they don’t know the local language, the prices, and the exchange rates are often confusing. Ride-hailing apps don’t require them to know anything but the name of the app.
  • Hailing a taxi might be financially risky for tourists: drivers might charge them the wrong price, a driver’s meter might be faulty, and in some countries, it’s a tradition to negotiate. It also might just be dangerous, especially if you are a woman (and women travel more than men).
  • Tourists don’t know about local WhatsApp or SMS-operating taxis until someone tells them, which means they often have no access to reliable taxi services.

So if you’re a ride-hailing business owner/marketer and you’ve decided to target tourists, you’re on the right track.

In this article, we propose 3 underserved markets, explain why they could be a good choice for a ride-hailing company, and suggest how you can approach them. 

Ski resort areas

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Ski resorts welcome millions of tourists every year and yet are majorly underserved in transportation. For example, around 2 million people ski in Ischgl Samnaun, Austria every year. At the same time, only 1,600 residents live in the village of Ischgl. 

This means that the existing transportation system is not fit for the influx of crazy amounts of people.

Every year for about four months, there is demand for taxis, as all local buses are full and other means of transport simply don’t exist. Ski resorts similar to Ischgl exist in France, Switzerland, Monaco, Italy, Liechtenstein, Austria, Germany, Slovenia, Canada, and the USA. Ski resorts in the Alps are the most popular ski destinations: all together, resorts in France, Switzerland, Monaco, Italy, Liechtenstein, Austria, Germany, and Slovenia welcome as many as 120 million tourists annually.

Starting a ride-hailing business or expanding a ride-hailing business to cover ski resorts would mean starting a seasonal business, with most of the income coming in winter and early spring. However, let’s also not forget about hiking - a spring and summer activity in the same ski resorts, but in different seasons. Hiking is becoming more and more popular every year. It was the most popular outdoor activity across America last year and is still growing, according to a 2023 report from an outdoor industry trade group. Having experienced an outbreak in 2020, hiking attracts more tourists each year. And most trails require a taxi lift. 

Defining your target audience

If you’ve chosen a ski resort as your market niche, your target audience will be sports tourists. 

You’ll need to measure their demographics, psychographics, socioeconomic status, transportation habits, online communities, and where they consume content.

If you’ve decided to choose this market as your target market, your best bet would be sports tourists, so let’s focus on them.

Defining pain points

Here are the possible pain points that your target audience ― sports tourists at ski resorts ― face:

  • Difficult access to the resort

Many ski resorts are located in remote or mountainous areas, which can make them difficult to reach, especially in winter conditions. Roads may be narrow, steep, and difficult for inexperienced drivers.

  • Parking issues

During peak seasons, parking can be a significant issue at ski resorts. Limited parking spaces may require tourists to arrive very early or park far from the resort and use shuttle services, which can be inconvenient and time-consuming.

  • Inconvenient shuttle services

While many resorts offer shuttle services from parking areas or accommodations to the slopes, these services can be infrequent, crowded, or have limited operating hours.

  • Lack of information

Lack of clear information about transportation options, schedules, and routes can lead to confusion and frustration among tourists.

  • Large & heavy equipment 

Often, personal cars are not suited for the large and heavy ski and snowboard equipment that people rent at the ski resort, which makes it impossible for tourists to use personal cars and pushes them to use shuttle services.

Defining value propositions

Now that you’ve figured out what the pain points are, you’ll need to define your ride-hailing service’s value proposition.

In marketing, a value proposition defines the benefits that a company is delivering to customers who buy its products or services.

  • Seamless resort access

Your ride-hailing service provides reliable, weather-adapted rides directly to the heart of your mountain adventure, eliminating the hassle of treacherous and dangerous winter driving.

  • No parking needed

Your clients can forget about the early morning parking rush. Your taxi service will drop them right at the slopes, giving tourists more time to enjoy the slopes.

  • No more crowded and unpredictable buses

No more guessing when the next bus arrives, and no more waiting. There's always a ride available, from the doorstep to the ski lift and back.

  • Winter-safe & suited for ski equipment

Your cars are suited for large and heavy ski and snowboard equipment. The vehicles are maintained and equipped for winter conditions, ensuring a safe, cozy ride every time.

There are plenty of other ways to make sure you find your clients at ski resorts. For example, there are no luxury taxi services, even though skiing is considered “a rich person’s sport” and ski resorts are often a destination for company getaways, honeymoons, and other holidays. 

It’s also often hard to move around with available public transport with kids or pets, for all the reasons described above. 

All you need to do is decide which niche you want to go for and start a ride-hailing business.

Paradise islands

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Destinations such as the Bahamas (700 islands), the Philippines (7,767 islands), and the Hawaiian archipelago (8 islands) are top-rated among tourists. 

Every year, 7 million tourists come to the Bahamas, which is almost 18 times more than the number of local citizens. In the Azores (Portugal, 9 islands) the number of annual tourists is 1.8 million.

Most tourists come from Germany, France, Canada, and the US, and don’t know local languages and currency. The most popular island destination in Australia is the Whitsunday Islands: the place accepts 0.6 million tourists annually, while the local population is less than 40,000 people.

The Canary Islands, Ibiza, and Mallorca are among the ones that can be targeted if you’re a ride-hailing business looking to provide tourists with the opportunity to relax, get a taxi via a phone app, and go wherever they want to go without thinking twice about fraudsters, exchange rates, and keeping up the conversations. 

Let’s sketch what could be the possible niches for the “Paradise Island” market, the pain points tourists might face, and the value proposition your ride-hailing business could go for.

Now we’ll do the same thing we did for the ski resort target market.

We’ll define the target audience, the pain points they face, and how your ride-hailing service could solve these pain points.

Target audience: partygoers

Let’s take partygoers as a target audience of choice, and consider the pain points they might be facing on paradise islands.

Pain points:  

  • Limited public transport at night

Island’s public transportation system usually doesn’t run late enough to accommodate the late-night schedules of clubs and bars, leaving partygoers with few options to return to their accommodations after hours.

  • No option to drive yourself, unless someone stays sober

It’s dangerous and against the law to drive after drinking, so many groups include a “dedicated driver” - someone who stays sober and drives everyone home. Others, unfortunately, ignore the risks.

  • Women don’t feel safe

Taxi drivers are often male, and regular taxis don’t include an SOS button or Follow My Ride feature. Women in taxis going home late often experience harassment and are often in danger. 

Now what are the benefits your ride-hailing service could offer that would solve the pain points partygoers face?

Relevant value propositions:

  • 24/7 service when nothing else works

Your ride-hailing service works 24/7 and can get partygoers home safely, no matter how late the party ends.

  • Safety & equality

No need to break the law or choose a victim out of a friend group who will take everyone home. The ride-hailing app is there to save the day and the friendship.

  • Women-for-women services/Safety features

You can let the user choose a female driver in your app. If you don’t have enough female drivers, the app will have an SOS button and a Follow My Ride feature which make the ride much safer. 

Partygoers aren’t the only ones visiting paradise islands.

What if you’d like to focus on a different target audience? Let’s consider families.

Target audience: families

What are the issues families might face on holidays on a paradise island?

Pain points:

  • Lack of child seats

Child-appropriate car seats are limited in car rentals, most taxi services, and public transport. 

  • Heat and humidity

The tropical climate can make waiting for transportation or walking long distances uncomfortable and potentially unsafe for young children, especially during peak heat hours.

  • Small cars and no space for baggage

Traveling with children often means additional baggage, such as strollers, beach toys, and diaper bags, which can be cumbersome to manage on public transport or in smaller rental vehicles.

  • Unfriendly drivers

Often, drivers find it difficult to deal with loud children and busy parents, act impolite, and spoil the holidays for tourists.

How can your ride-hailing service help families enjoy their holiday better? Let’s see!

Relevant value propositions:

  • Family-friendly rides with child seats

Your customers will travel with peace of mind knowing their little ones are safe. You can offer family-friendly rides that come equipped with a variety of child-appropriate car seats, ensuring a secure and comfortable journey for children of all ages.

  • Cool comfort in the tropical heat

Climate-controlled vehicles: a cool, comfortable environment that keeps the whole family happy, even during peak heat hours.

  • Spacious and accommodating cars or minivans

Spacious vehicles that are designed with families in mind, providing ample room for strollers, beach toys, diaper bags, and all the family's essentials.

  • Family-friendly drivers

The drivers are specially trained to cater to the needs of parents and children, ensuring a friendly, respectful, and helpful service that makes every journey pleasant.

Most visited cities (non-capitals)

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If we’re talking about starting a ride-hailing business for tourists, it’s impossible not to mention the most visited tourist destinations. However, let’s avoid capitals, as they are the hardest locations for starting a taxi business, and we’re looking for more opportunities - not more competition. 

The cities that have impressive tourist to local ratios are Barcelona (Spain), Albufeira (Portugal), Cancún (Mexico), Dubrovnik (Croatia), Bariloche (Argentina), Edinburgh (Scotland), Bodrum (Turkey), Florianópolis (Brazil), San Diego (USA), Cairns (Australia), Budva (Montenegro), and Cannes (France). None of these cities are capitals, and, although all of them have local ride-hailing/taxi services, they are good places to consider.

Which kind of tourists can you target more precisely? We’ve already covered “partygoers” and “families”, even though you can also target them in cities. But let’s see which other niches you might find:

But let’s see which other people you might find:

Target audience: Explorers

Explorers seek untouched far-away destinations and less popular places to visit. 

What could be making their lives more complicated?

Pain points:

  • Expensive and unpredictable pricing for far-away destinations

Meters and other ride-hailing apps would charge a tourist a lot for going somewhere far away.

  • Not enough transportation

Explorers don’t have an extensive choice in terms of transportation if they are going to unpopular places.

  • Not familiar with the place

While true for all tourists, explorers are often especially lost, as they’ve probably read about a place they want to visit on a weird forum online. 

How you can solve that? 

Relevant value propositions:

  • Fixed pricing

No more unpredictable costs for distant destinations. Let tourists explore without fear of overpaying.

  • Wide range of transportation options

A diverse fleet of transportation options ensures that even the most off-the-beaten-path destinations are within reach.

  • Local drivers

The local driver not only takes the tourist to their desired destination but also offers insights and guidance about the area.

Target audience: business tourists

Business tourists travel to visit meetings, attend conferences and exhibitions, and meet their colleagues in other cities. 

Pain points:

  • Lack of comfort and privacy

For business tourists, the ability to work, make phone calls, or relax in a quiet and comfortable environment while commuting can be life-changing.

  • Time sensitivity

Business tourists often operate on tight schedules with back-to-back meetings, events, or conferences, making punctuality essential. Delays caused by traffic, public transport schedules, or finding a ride can lead to missed opportunities and stress.

  • Flexible transportation needs

Depending on the nature of their business trip, the transportation needs may vary – from single-passenger rides to group transportation for meetings or events.

  • Environmental responsibility

For many companies, being or appearing environmentally conscious is important and hard to do with most transportation options.

Relevant value propositions:

  • Comfort and privacy for productive journeys

The rider can transform their commute into a mobile office. You can offer premium vehicles that provide comfort and privacy.

  • Punctuality guaranteed

Guarantee accurate waiting times and punctuality of your drivers. Mention real-time traffic updates and efficient routing.

  • Different service types

Offer a choice of different cars and minivans for different numbers of people.

  • Eco-friendly vehicles

Offer hybrid and electric vehicles for eco-friendly rides.

Of course, there are more target options for popular cities. You can focus on female tourists who feel unsafe (like Pink Taxi in Egypt), on event tourists who come for large events, or on senior tourists. 

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There are also more markets for tourists and more target options for each of these markets. But you’re a hero if you read this much! So whatever it is, choose your market, choose your niche, and go from there

Let’s discuss your business requirements! Get a free consult on what fits your business best.

Book a call now

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