The idea of sharing economy seems to be getting increasingly popular, ever since a few high-profile US startups started gaining unprecedented traction with users, including those that let people rent hippy apartments and chic homes like Airbnb Inc., or get car rides, such as Uber Technologies Inc.

Tripalocal, an Australian start-up, wants to connect adventurous travellers with local hosts for authentic local experiences. If you are out for some bona fide fun, it is about time to look away from conventional travel guides.

The team behind Tripalocal was formed with the homogeneous love for travel and believes in the potential to build something that brings travel back to its core: a discovery of local culture, people and stories.

The experiences are categorised into three sections: (1) Seeing, (2) Doing and (3) Eating. Depending on their personal preference, travellers can select which experiences they would love to embark on in a foreign land.

(1) Seeing – Travellers should prepare to explore the city through the eyes of professionals like photographers, artists or architects. Or rather, someone who has an eye for precious finds. This does not stop here, the local would ideally have their own story or meaningful reason to share at their favourite locations.

(2) Doing – Travellers will see themselves learning a local skill, say hiking in a localised terrain and simply hike like the locals do. They can experience a farm stay in their trip to New Zealand or learn the art of calligraphy in the heart of Beijing whilst hearing stories on why their hosts practice this beautiful art form.

(3) Eating – Ah, my favourite part of it all. Travellers can learn to cook a local meal and enjoy them with their hosts. They can learn how to whip up their favourite Kong Pau Chicken dish in Yunnan or make sushi and learn the history behind it in the most passionate way possible.

Hosts can get rewarded for their local insights based on how much wish to be rewarded. Both travellers and local hosts can provide reviews for each other after the experience.

Tripalocal has yet to be launched but I am already pretty eager to see how it is going to turn out. With the brand promise of “see it, feel it, experience it like a local”, it is only a matter of time before you get out of your comfort zone and be sure to fully immerse yourself in a travel journey towards authenticity.

Tech and communications enthusiast based in Beijing.

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