When did you open Los Elementos Adventure Center and what inspired you to do so?
We opened in 2009. My wife and I moved to Lake Atitlan in 2007, and immediately saw the potential to help develop sustainable tourism in this area. The tourism infrastructure was very undeveloped, even though this area is super popular as a destination. We work with a local non-profit to help educate the youth in our community, and also help to develop the economy for all in our community, but especially our graduates. We train youth to be community and adventure guides, and ultimately encourage them to develop their own business.
What do you love most about Los Elementos Adventure Center?
I love helping visitors to our area make the most of their vacation time. Due to the undeveloped infrastructure, most visitors to our area struggle to find activities that fit their needs. I love seeing and hearing our guests have a great experience with us.
What has been the most rewarding part of opening Los Elementos Adventure Center?
Becoming a leader in the adventure and cultural tourism sector. Helping many of the youth in our community find good employment.
Tell us about your team (how you built the team/what you love most)...
Our team are locals who love to work in tourism, yet lack the tools to develop a marketplace, in other words, how to connect with clients. They are all excited and motivated to work, and truly appreciate the opportunity to earn a living wage for themselves and their families.
How has Tab helped Los Elementos Adventure Center?
Tab has helped our clients make it easy to pay for our services. ATM machines are not located in our area, so if people show up without cash, it can be a real struggle. Tab has helped our business by allowing us to invoice clients for bookings.
What is your favourite feature that Tab offers? Why?
Being able to swipe a card and make a charge on the fly, with our cell phones. This makes our business run smoothly, and doesn't slow down our clients.
Why would you recommend Tab to another business?
Absolutely, and I recommend Tab to other businesses all the time.
Why is Guatemala a great place to visit?
Guatemala has that perfect blend of nature and culture. This is difficult to find in most other countries. The natural beauty speaks for itself; with dozens of volcanoes, beautiful lakes, two oceans, and plenty of untapped potential. Visitors can stay at the primary destinations, or get off the beaten trail (with our adventure experiences).
What would your advice be for anyone thinking about starting their own tourism business?
Develop a solid plan that differentiates from other businesses, hire and develop local staff, encourage everyone on your team to succeed, and make sure every client leaves you happy at the end of the day.