We all like to experience the real culture behind countries that we visit and Meetrip, a Japan-based online marketplace that gives travelers the chance the enjoy local experiences, has made this more possible in Asia after it expanded to 10 new cities there.
The site, which borrows cues from social marketplaces like Airbnb, is designed to let users go beyond travel books and experience a taste of local culture by picking out activities and experiences that are sold by local people from each city. Each ‘tour’, as they are called, is arranged by the host who chooses a description, adds photos and a price and then waits for interested people to get in touch.
Owned by Duckdive, the site moved its coverage beyond just Taipei (Taiwan) and Tokyo (Japan), and is now open in ten new cities, which includes destinations across Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, South Korea and Vietnam. The full list of cities now reads: Kuala Lumpur, Manila, Singapore, Bangkok, Ho Chi Minh City, Jakarta, Bali, Seoul, Taipei, Kyoto, Okinawa, Osaka and Tokyo.
Aside from local tours, the site also includes Q&A pages for each city, while visitors to the site can also ask hosts questions directly. Here is the Q&A for Bangkok, which just opened up today and already has a couple of questions.
The site lets visitors log in via Facebook and now Twitter, through which activities can be shared with friends and the rest of the Web. Duckdive CEO Takashi Kiyama told TNW that native Meetrips apps are “under development”, which would certainly be a welcomed addition – for me, at least.
If you’re the type of person that is either visiting a new city in Asia or looking to do something different in your own backyard, then Meetrip is certainly worth a visit.
Airbnb is actually expanding into Asia. The startup launched a support office in Australia last week and unveiled plans to do the same in Thailand and Indonesia. Together, the two sites will make holidays that are off-the-beaten track more easy to arrange.
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