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Would I spend £ 50 per month for a guaranteed weekend trip to a European destination every four months?

This is the premise behind BRB's new start-up travel business, which adapts the subscription-based business model popularized by Netflix and Spotify, to offer uncomplicated vacations where flights and accommodation are booked on their behalf.

But there is a turn.

You will not know where you will be going or will stay until a month before traveling.

Greg Geny (right) and Alex Tomlinson (left) founded BRB, which adapts the subscription-based business model popularized by Netflix and Spotify, to offer uncomplicated vacation packages

Greg Geny (right) and Alex Tomlinson (left) founded BRB, which adapts the subscription-based business model popularized by Netflix and Spotify, to offer uncomplicated vacation packages

The company was started by travel enthusiasts, Greg Geny and Alex Tomlinson, and, unlike many joint ventures, where the founders are related or were friends before starting the business, Geny and Tomlinson had no past relationships with each other.

They met at the Founders Factory founders incubator offices, which develops business ideas to help them become a fully fledged company.

This is through an injection of cash and the support of your internal operations team for six months.

Geny, originally from France, has seven years of experience in the travel industry, including a stint as marketing director of a company that defended small independent hotels in the UK.

He went through the doors of the Founders Factory with a map of what became BRB: a text that some will know as "ya vuelvo", which became popular in the MSN Messenger era.

Tomlinson was a product designer for Founders Factory that helped other emerging companies develop new concepts before deciding to try their business.

He said: "I never thought about starting a business when I joined the factory, but when you're with business people every day and you see how they work, you start thinking, 'I'd like to do that.'"

"Both Greg and I made it. I totally got the idea: I thought the service is something I would use. We discussed how to expand the concept and the rest is history & # 39;

BRB allows you to select the type of trips you would like to experience, be it a beach vacation or a romantic outing

BRB allows you to select the type of trips you would like to experience, be it a beach vacation or a romantic outing

The duo received £ 150,000 from Founders Factory to take off the business, and since then has formed close links with easyJet and the people who helped create the LastMinute travel booking website.

Currently, BRB offers trips lasting a total of three days, with two nights accommodation to more than 50 destinations, including Amsterdam, Barcelona, ​​Croatia and Paris.

To avoid unpleasant surprises, the service allows you to filter the destinations you do not want to visit or those you have traveled before.

In addition, BRB guarantees you to stay in a hotel with at least three stars in your name.

You can invite friends to join your trip with a code. They can pay a flat fee or become subscribers themselves.

However, not everything is included. You will need to organize transfers to the airport, store luggage and insurance (both travel and health).

In addition, all trips start and finish from London airports, including Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted and Luton. The firm said it will add more regional airports in the future.

All vacation packages offered by the firm are protected by ATOL, which means you will not lose money or be stranded abroad if the company collapses.

How does it work?

Once you have enrolled in the service, you will be asked if you plan to travel with a loved one, a friend or alone.

The next step allows you to select the type of getaways you would like to experience, be it a beach vacation, a romantic outing or even a trip to a place where you can take many "installable" photos (the company calls it a & # 39; ; # 4 theGram & # 39; break).

To avoid unpleasant surprises, the service allows you to filter the destinations you do not want to visit or those you have traveled before.

To avoid unpleasant surprises, the service allows you to filter the destinations you do not want to visit or those you have traveled before.

Then, you can filter the locations you do not want to visit before choosing one of the two subscription plans: to go alone or to associate with a friend or loved one.

There is an additional incentive to choose the latter, since it costs £ 89.99 per month for two people. If you split the cost in half, the cost per person is £ 45, which is cheaper than the charge of £ 49.99 if you decide to do it alone.

Both plans guarantee a surprise trip every four months with travel accommodation. The company said that travel normally involves taking a flight but, on occasion, it may require the use of another means of transport.

For example, you can leave Kings Cross on the Eurostar for destinations such as Lille, Paris, Amsterdam and Brussels.

When it comes to accommodation, only three-star hotels that have a rating of 3.5 and higher (out of a total of five) on TripAdvisor exceed the limit. They also have to be in a central location, so airport hotels are excluded.

The company sends a postcard to reveal the destination one month before the chosen weekend.

Geny said: & # 39; The idea is to eliminate the stress and hassle of booking a holiday.

& # 39; Organizing a trip with friends can be quite cumbersome. There are often people who argue about the location and that discussing the payment can be an uncomfortable conversation. We do the hard work for you so you do not have to.

The founders met in Founders Factory founders' incubator, which develops and tests business ideas and helps them become a full-fledged company.

The founders met in Founders Factory founders' incubator, which develops and tests business ideas and helps them become a full-fledged company.

Behind the scenes, the firm negotiates special agreements with several suppliers to offer a subscription model that is affordable and, more importantly, one that makes the business earn money.

Geny added: & # 39; We did a lot of market research before we got to the charge of £ 50 per month (for a single subscription).

& # 39; People already spend this amount on things like a membership in a gym, but can only go a few times a month.

"They can spend that amount a month with us and, in fact, have something to show."

The price of £ 50 per month helps people divide the cost of travel throughout the year, and essentially means three trips in 12 months for £ 600.

The founders said they intend to break up with each transaction and expect to increase the margins of the company as it expands.

Geny said: "The first days for us is not about making money but about providing great service.

& # 39; Over time, we can negotiate better rates with suppliers and look for other ways to increase our margin.

& # 39; Ultimately, we want to become your travel concierge. The more you use us, the more we will learn about your travel habits.

"We hope to use this information to offer personalized supplements to our packages, such as excursions and restaurant coupons."

Social media

Like many young companies with limited funds, BRB marketing is limited to word of mouth recommendations, but it also relies heavily on social media to increase brand recognition.

The firm seeks without shame to attract customers of the millennial generation. The name of the company, BRB, is a game in the acronym commonly used in chat and online text messages to say that you are going for a moment, but that we will be back soon.

The postcard sent by the company before each trip may seem like a novel initiative, but it also serves as a marketing tool.

The postcard sent by the company before each trip may seem like a novel initiative, but it also serves as a marketing tool.

Because millennials tend to use Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, BRB works with a number of "influential people in social networks" to promote their brand.

It is not a simple case to offer those who have a considerable social network after free trips to promote the business according to Deny, adding: "We work with people who have a genuine audience and who really love our service are the people with the ones that we work & # 39;

The postcard sent by the company before each trip may seem like a novel initiative, but it also serves as a marketing tool.

The company expects customers to reveal their impending holidays to their social media followers by sharing snapshots of them with the postcard, so unwittingly, the profile of BRB will increase.

"Like Starbucks, where the barista writes his name on the paper cup, it's a way that people can identify us as a brand," Tomlinson said.

The founders intend to raise seed funds in the new year to help grow their business.

Meanwhile, they are developing a rewards program by recommendation and their goal is to offer gift subscription packages in time for Christmas.

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