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Finalist in the WTFL World Tourism Innovation Awards


The Freebird Club has been named among the 15 finalists for the World Tourism Start-up Innovation Awards. The competition run by the World Tourism Forum Lucerne attracted hundreds of start-ups from 54 different countries, with the 15 most innovative businesses invited to the WTFL Start-Up Innovation Camp 2018 in Malaysia. There they will have a unique opportunity to pitch their business model and convince international investors to help make their vision a reality.

The competition covers five different categories: Transaction, Hospitality, Destination, Mobility, and Impact. The 3 best start-ups of each category were selected by the international jury and all 15 finalists will pitch their business in front of the jury, international investors and industry executives at WTFL Start-Up Innovation Camp 2018 in Langkawi, Malaysia on 12 September. The winner of each category will be awarded with 15,000 USD Start-Up Innovation Award, and a 2-year coaching programme. The Freebird Club has been selected in the Impact category.

The Freebird Club is a travel-based social network for the over 50s which enables peer-to-peer homestays among members from around the world. Via the website, “Freebirds” can travel and stay with each other as part of a trusted community of peers. Freebird visits always involve staying with the live-in host in situ, as the focus is more on the company than the accommodation. The Freebird Club offers a new way of travelling for mature adults, a means to earn extra money through their homes, and a fun accessible way to meet new people and enjoy social and cultural interaction in later life.

Freebird Club Founder Peter Mangan said: “Reaching the final of these awards is a great tribute to the passion and enthusiasm of the whole Freebird Club community. To win would be game-changing in terms of our global growth ambitions. Our mission is to connect and enrich the lives of older adults through meaningful travel, and to foster an age-friendly and inclusive world in the process”.


Freebird Club has already won several major awards, most recently the European Social Innovation Tournament organised annually by the European Investment Bank for start-ups creating social value and inclusion. This marked the European double for Freebird, having won the European Commission’s Social Innovation Competition the previous year.


The 15 WTFL start-up finalists are available here:

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