19 Aug An Inside Look at Unity Travel: The EDM Travel Company
Tell us a little more about Unity Travel and how the company came to be. Can you describe the experience from where you started to where you are now?
Long before Unity Travel, my business partners Chris Overlay, Carlos Rodriguez and I had become full blown enthusiasts of Electronic Dance Music. It was 2010, an exciting time to join the scene and many people had yet to hear of the music and its festivals. We constantly found ourselves arranging trips and transportation to events and generally making plans to attend festivals for our friends and acquaintances. During EDC 2012, we filled over three party buses with people we knew and that’s when it all started to click. Most of those people had never attended a festival before and the sheer joy of being able to take them to their first was an honor. Unity Travel, as it is today, was really born during EDC 2013 when we took care of roughly 200 people with transportation and hotels. Fast forward to two years later and we now service over 20 festivals around the world and regularly book thousands of trips for festival goers. Our roster includes everything from the big three down to small niche and regional festivals, all of which are unique and awesome in their own way.
You recently offered services at EDC Las Vegas. How was the turnout? Did you have any problems, issues or concerns? Is there anything you did this year that you’ll be doing differently next year?
The turnout was fantastic! It was our most successful year by far, with over 600 shuttle riders and hotel guests. Our average shuttle wait time was less than 20 minutes, with many not having to wait at all. We gave out tons of free water and had great bus drivers. One of the coolest additions we had was a free day party for all Unity Travel guests and EDM Maniac fans on Sunday. DJ Dan, Tommie Sunshine, Kristina Sky, and Halfway House rounded out an awesome afternoon of music at the pool.
We’re planning to really turn up this portion next year, as we love finding new ways to give our guests a great time (Check out our social media channels for the aftermovie!). The only other thing we’ll be doing differently next year is getting more busses for the return trip on Monday morning. Everyone likes to stay until the last song on the last day and Monday morning traffic is rough, to say the least. That sometimes causes delays, but we are taking steps to alleviate that for next year.
What other festivals will you be providing services for and what festival are you most looking forward too?
Honestly, The Day After Festival in Panama is truly something special. It takes place in January and it’s a unique blend of culture and dance music. The country of Panama is not only beautiful, but a true paradise and the people are insanely welcoming. Get ready to dance all night with friends from all over South America and beyond. Nothing drives home the point of this being a culture of love and openness like The Day After does.
Can you tell us more about your “Solo-Venture” Program and how it works? How do you match single travelers together and have you come across any issues with this? What happens if someone doesn’t get along with the person they’re paired up with?
The Solo-Venture program is personally, my favorite initiative because it dives right at the heart of what EDM culture is all about – Love and acceptance. We match people based primarily on age and musical taste. Then, they are introduced to each other via email and social networks before they arrive at the festival. Of course, if any issues arise we have backup plans to switch people out, similar to how dorms work when you go to college. We haven’t had any issue yet, and the feedback we’ve received so far has been great. It’s not for everyone, but for those looking for an adventure, it’s the perfect way to jump down the rabbit hole.
You offer hotel, transportation, split-bills, solo ventures and more. Can you describe some of the challenges or issues you’ve faced and how you’ve overcome them?
The challenges are numerous! Especially, when it comes to shuttle operations and large festivals. When you have that many people in one place at one time, logistics are a huge concern and unfortunately, many of the festivals are too focused on throwing an awesome party to worry about those things. That’s where we come in! We love transportation and logistics; it’s a fun challenge to us. We’ve had busses go missing and not show up, but we never give up and we always find solutions, even in the heat of the moment. We are dedicated to providing our customers a great experience and work tirelessly to be the best festival transportation company, no matter what the cost. On top of that, the challenges of running a business are numerous and never ending. You kind of just have to “get used to it,” because the road never gets easier. You just get better at navigating it.
To read the full interview with Unity Travel and to get even more exclusive content, then check out the magazine now. This article can be found in Issue 13 of EDM World Magazine! Download the app for free. Apple users click for access on your iPhone or iPad. Android users click for access here.
To get more information on Unity Travel, check out their website here.