Ayubowan: Ayubo! The digital travel agent

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The journey onboard the Podi Menike, the mountains of Riverston, the mysterious paths of the Great Western, and so many more. Sri Lanka is a country that’s rich in natural wonders making it a traveler’s paradise. It’s no surprise that 2 million tourists decided to visit the country in 2017 alone. But traveling typically means dealing with multiple people. Ayubo aims to change that and make your journey simpler.

Sri Lanka is stunning
Everyone agrees that Sri Lanka is stunning

Exactly what is Ayubo?

Ayubo is the latest venture by the ESOFT Group, which was officially launched on the 12th of January. At first glance, It looks like your typical online travel agent. But as you dig deeper, you’ll find that it’s a lot larger than it seems. The company has four distinct arms. Each one has a different specialty. But when put together, Ayubo is the digital travel agent that handles every aspect of your journey.

Starting off, there’s Ayubo.lk – OTA, which is the online travel agent that gets you a hotel. Secondly, there’s Ayubo Leisure Destination Management (Inbound Tours), which helps you find nearby attractions and activities at your destination. Thirdly, there’s Ayubo Drive – Vehicle Rentals which helps you get to your destination. Finally, Ayubo Corporate – MICE supports you in arranging a venue for a corporate event or conference.

Dr. Dayan Rajapakse - Chairman of the ESOFT Group at the official launch
Dr. Dayan Rajapakse – Chairman of the ESOFT Group at the official launch

So why exactly is ESOFT entering the travel industry? We got an answer to this question from Dr. Dayan Rajapakse – Chairman of the ESOFT Group at the official launch. He shared that he believes traveling in Sri Lanka is not as easy and cost-effective as it should be.

At the same time, his friend running a resort struggles to maintain occupancy throughout the year. Seeing this problem, ESOFT decided to solve it with a technical solution specifically aimed at the Sri Lankan tourism industry.

How it works

Shageevan Sachithanandan – CIO of Ayubo described its experience saying, “You can book a room, get a jet ski ride, a vehicle for the entire trip, and pay for all of it at once.” So if you head over to its homepage, you’ll find a collection of its top hotels, activities, and vehicles. And at the top is the traditional search bar to help you book hotels, activities, and vehicles for the journey.

Thoughts on Ayubo by the e-Swabhimani 2017 grand jury
Thoughts on Ayubo by the e-Swabhimani 2017 grand jury

Currently, it only lists a limited number of high-end hotels across the island. Similarly, its activities range from watersports to camping expeditions in Yala. Finally, its fleet of vehicles include cars, SUV’s, and busses. Thus far, the company has kicked off by offering the popular options that every tourist would want.

So when you plan a trip with Ayubo you’ll get a voucher for each of the services you’ve bought. Meanwhile, behind the scenes, the hotels and other service providers are informed instantly. Additionally, with Ayubo Drive, the company also offers the service of managing the travel desks of hotels.

So what’s next for Ayubo?

Currently, Ayubo is only focusing on the Sri Lankan market. It aims to focus on becoming the all-in-one platform for local travelers. As such they don’t aim to merely an online travel agent. But this doesn’t mean the company has no plans for the future.

They’re aiming to add tours of cultural sites in the future. Additionally, they’re also working towards building a companion app.  Along with the offerings already on the website, the app would also list nearby attractions, activities, and restaurants. Furthermore, the company also aims to add VR and AR tours into this app.

So next you’re planning on exploring Sri Lanka, you now have a new option with Ayubo.

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