When I lived in Nepal, I was able to have the kinds of experiences which tourists could only dream of, because I became a local. My friends would take me off the beaten path to places most Nepalis don’t usually go. Experiences a tourist will never have, because tour companies don’t go there and online searches don’t show them.
As a modern traveler, being able to authentically experience destinations like a local is a problem which has not been adequately solved yet. Travelers are trapped at the back of the information loop, finding bars, restaurants and cultural events long after a local. For me, this is what it means to be a local: to have a current, lived understanding of the city’s cultural and social landscape. When I travel, I want to immerse myself in the destination and everything it has to offer. I want to discover hidden gems and know the city like a local would.
Unraveling the many layers of a new destination? Where do we even start. In my hometown of Sydney, Australia, we have city guides like Broadsheet, Urbanlist, Concrete Playground and a plethora of locally known bloggers to look to for inspiration when it comes to finding something new.
But, as travelers, we struggle to find this kind of current, up to date information, especially when language barriers and different social media platforms create a divide we may not be ready to cross. At best, we could do some research on local bloggers or search relevant hashtags in hopes of finding relevant city guides or ideas for places to visit, explore, eat, drink or play.
avendi aims to be the solution to this problem. Our motto is to help you travel like a local whilst making travel simple. We link up with handpicked local bloggers and influencers in cities around the world to give you a local view of your destination, with curated recommendations based on what the locals are up to. We save you time by finding you the best value flights and accommodation for your trip. Our 24/7 concierge will assist you with any questions you might have as you travel.
It’s also free. Think of us as your new travel buddy. Your mate you went to school with who recently moved to the city you’re visiting. You’ll get the best of the city, plus your entire trip just got easier.
I joined avendi because I want to be a part of the modern travelers’ solution. A part of an ecosystem and industry which has given me such depth and breadth of experience. When my friend and avendi CEO, Saujanya made the call, I jumped at the chance to join him. The challenge is not small, but the need is there and we have the desire to help travelers experience destinations like a local.
We’ve been working hard to build a concept, model and platform which enhances your experience as a traveler. Now, it’s time to see what you think! Wherever you’re planning on jetting to next, we know avendi can provide added value to your trip, whether that be through a rare experience, a booming new local bar, the best Airbnb in town or finding you the best value flights.
avendi has been designed by travelers, for travelers, with both founders and myself having lived abroad for significant parts of our lives. It’s absolutely free and we’d love you to try the platform.
Our MVP is available on Facebook Messenger, and we are helping people through our Concierge worldwide. Our Local Guide feature is currently available in Dubai and Nepal, meaning we can provide you with immediate recommendations on experiences in these locations.
We’ll be rolling out more destinations within Local Guide in the coming months, and our Concierge team is on hand to provide authentic and local recommendations for any destination around the world in the meantime. In this way, we’ve helped our users find flights, accommodation and experiences for their journeys to England, Australia, South Africa, New Zealand, The Dominican Republic, Indonesia, Morocco, Thailand, the Philippines, France and the United States.
Michael has lived, worked and studied throughout Asia since 2017. He lived in Nepal for 18 months, studied Entrepreneurship in Australia and is now avendi’s Vice President.