LUGGit has launched operations in Vienna [Credit: LUGGit]

LUGGit launches operations in Vienna

Portugal / Austria: Portuguese tech startup LUGGit, which offers travellers a real-time baggage collection and delivery service, has announced its opening in the Austrian capital of Vienna, its first international city.

LUGGit allows any tourist to request a driver [keeper] in real-time to collect their luggage wherever they are, store them for as long as necessary and deliver them at the chosen place and time.

It is the third city where LUGGit can be used, after launching in Lisbon and Porto in 2019. The startup is also planning to open operations in three more European cities over the next two years.

Ricardo Figueiredo, co-founder and CEO of LUGGit, said: “This step is due solely and exclusively to the quality of our team. With all the external constraints inherent to any tourism business in recent times, we were able to develop a product and strategy, for now, taking this significant step.

“Since the beginning, our objective has been to place LUGGit in the world, and the fact that we start in Austria allows us to face a reality quite different from the Portuguese one and with that, learn as much as possible,” he added.

The expansion to Vienna follows significant and constant growth in the Portuguese market.

Since May, the startup has seen its number of customers increase at a monthly rate of over 115 per cent, and it is not expected to abate any time soon. This is due mainly to the development of technology carried out during the months of reduced activity that has reinforced LUGGit’s position as an “easy-to-integrate” solution for local accommodation management companies, hotels, and travel agencies.

Figueiredo continued: “During the time of the pandemic, and while the flow of customers simply did not exist, we focused on understanding how our platform could be integrated into the value proposition of different companies that deal with tourists. This change not only allows us to have a much more sustainable acquisition channel but at the same time, it provides a much more integrated experience for the guest, which is basically what our partners and we want.

“The growth we have seen is proof of that,” he added.

While expanding to other locations, LUGGit says that it is continuing to grow the base of tourism companies that are integrating its solution. The startup has now integrated with more than 60 local accommodation management companies between Lisbon and Porto, totalling more than 1500 apartments, including domestic businesses such as We have Feels Like Home, Lovely Stay, Whome, Bnbird and Time Cooler.

It follows LUGGit’s recent announcement that it had partnered with the Hoti Hoteis chain and the Travel Store travel agency.

Figueiredo said: “Any local accommodation manager, hotel or travel agency knows that at some point they will have to find a solution for their customers’ luggage. Our platform allows these companies to be proactive in providing the solution, giving customers the autonomy to book the LUGGit service at the time of booking.

“Let’s think about all the decisions we end up making because of baggage, from booking flights with a later arrival [more expensive] to having to carry our bags to the accommodation or hotel. We realise that LUGGit really makes the whole experience of travel much more comfortable and flexible,” he added.

LUGGit can be used through its mobile application on iOS and Android, as well as through its website.

It works by travellers indicating the place and time of collection and delivery, and the number and type of bags. These tourists will then gain access to all of the information about the service, including their driver and vehicle, and after collection, they will also know where and with whom the luggage is being kept.

The startup works with companies across the travel sector, creating personalised websites for each partner company that is communicated with guests before an “early check-in” or “late check-out”. Once they have access to the personalised website of the hotel or local accommodation, tourists can book as much time and in advance as they like.

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