PlayPlanet:Social Innovation through Sustainable Travel_Platform business idea

PlayPlanet:Social Innovation through Sustainable Travel_Platform business idea

South Korea
Organization type: 
nonprofit/ngo/citizen sector
$500,000 - $1 million
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

Playful Participatory Platform for Sustainable Tourism: Connect. Inspire. Change.

How can we travel better for us and better for the earth? We find the answer in sustainable travel which benefits local community, protects environment, and respects locals. Tourism is connected every social issues. We can lead the industry into making positive impacts.

PlayPlanet is a sustainable travel platform that empowers grassroots for social innovation. We believe travel changes one’s life and even the whole world. PlayPlanet connects locals and travelers to revitalizes communities and helps people travel better together. It will inspire people and become seeds for personal innovation changing one’s minds and behavior and leads innovation changing the world.

About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

Tourism grows by 25% every year and as a global industry tourism provides 1 out of every 12 jobs in the world. However, tourism industry in Asia is currently confronted by a number of challenges such as shortages with respect to labor in general and skilled labor in particular. This is exacerbated by the tourism industry’s inability to compete against other industries in terms of wages and working conditions, thereby undermining attempts to recruit and retain labor in the tourism industry of the region. Sustainable tourism could be an effective tool for poverty reduction, self-reliance of marginalized people and protection of environment. Tourism is growing fastest in developing countries and tourism exhibits the highest linkages of any industry to local economies. A movement for sustainable tourism has begun in many Asian countries. However, there are still a few players and most customers are non-Asian. It indicates lack of awareness about the value of sustainable tourism and many travelers are not ready to consume even though they agree with it or having difficulties with access to those information. Travelers’ conscious choice can revitalize local communities. Such as invisible barriers should be break down and sustainable travel should be fun and easy so that everyone who loves travel can play a major role for sustainable tourism.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

Change rules of game - Transform from consumers into producers – collaboration & co-creation Through creating never exist service, PlayPlanet changes the way people travel to foster sustainable tourism. Mostly tour agencies produce tour programs and give a limited amount of control to users, leaving them with a simplified experience. However, PlayPlanet transitions travelers to producers, putting travelers in control. Instead of being just consumers of previously designed travel routes, travelers become producers. Thus, PlayPlanet empowers travelers lead sustainable travel movement. Also, PlayPlanet enhances access to job opportunities fostering technical connections between locals and travelers. Anybody can participate in sustainable travel designing and operating through the platform. It will be a good opportunity for who are in difficulties with unemployment, geographical reach and lack of economical background. Market based social problem solving by matchmaking different social needs Many sustainable tour agencies have difficulties with market access in the highly competitive low price strategy industry and travelers have also difficulties to access to local tour information in the sea of information. PlayPlanet connects two different groups satisfying their needs. Sustainable tour operators can use this platform as a channel to approach customers. Travelers can have reliable local information and enjoy responsible consumption.
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

Travel like a local Destination where travelers visit for holidays is somebody’s home. Suppose the destination is friends’ home. Travelers should take better responsible choice caring destination, which is the way to revitalize communities, preserve environment, and respect locals. Build friendship How can we get more people to choose sustainable travel by making it fun and easy? PlayPlanet provides 3 playful user experiences - social networking, social designing, and self organizing. 1. Connect locals and travelers and share sustainable travel information. Social Networking We connect people and place, providing market access for local players like accommodation, restaurants, tour operators and local travel information for travelers. Anyone can share local travel information like social enterprise restaurants and community business accommodation using social networking service. 2. Empower people to participate in sustainable travel. Social-designing We provide travel itinerary tool which travelers can design their travel by themselves with sustainable travel contents on the platform. Users can drag and drop contents from the menu of possible activities and routes. The designed itinerary is open for everybody to see, this includes, local operators, sustainable travel agencies, and of course other travelers. This way everybody can comment in real time, and others can jump in into modifying and improving the itinerary so that more people join and raise awareness about sustainable development. Self-organizing We help people find friends and organize tour group. Many tour programs have fixed costs and vary the price according to the member of people If the itinerary is published and popular, the more people signing up, the less the cost will be per person and the profit for the local community will be greater. Thus, minimizing costs and maximizing positive impact.
About You
Travelers' MAP
About You
First Name

Sun Mi

Last Name


About Your Organization
Organization Name

Travelers' MAP

Organization Country
Country where this project is creating social impact
How long has your organization been operating?

1‐5 years

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What stage is your project in?

Idea phase

Share the story of the founder and what inspired the founder to start this project

What if my happy holidays destroy someone’s life?
Vs What if my happy holidays can make others happy too?

:Sun loves travel but sometimes she was sorry for inconvenient truth - locals humiliated by huge external capital, destroyed nature and maltreated animals for somebody’s holidays - on her travel. On the road, she met a girl who had to leave her hometown because of over-crowded, talked with a guy working more than 12 hours a day in a small ticket box of the at tourist resort in a neighboring countries in order for his son’s school fees and saw many street children begging to travelers. And she learned that those social issues were related to her life since people affected and be affected just like butterfly effect.

Tourism meets many social problems. At the same time, we can solve those problems when we travel in alternative ways.

Challenge for Change

:She co-founded Travelers’ MAP which is the sustainable travel social enterprise. She worked for building social business model of Travelers’ MAP at the initial period then she works for <Endangered Animal Project> tackling animal extinction and their habitat forest issue through travel with travelers this year.

At present, she is trying to build PlayPlanet ideas in order to solve the restricted market problem since stainable tour agencies including Travelers’ MAP have difficulties with market access.

Social Impact
Please describe how your project has been successful and how that success is measured

PlayPanet pursues participation for everyone. Everyone can be a PlayPlanet player for sustainable travel and sustainable development. More participation means greater social impact. It can be measured by socialnomics which is the impact generated by social media in the form of investment. It means website traffic, indicates the power of participation for sustainable travel, and then sales will reflect benefits to the communities.

-Traffic & the number of members indicate Participation

In the end, success can be numerically measured by the next factors:
-the number of local partners
-the number of responsible travelers
-the number of self employment
-benefits generated from business activities connecting travelers and locals
-successful tours designed by using PlayPlanet

Based on these indicators, it would be possible to calculate the value of social impact through Social Return on Investment (SROI)

How many people have been impacted by your project?

How many people could be impacted by your project in the next three years?

More than 10,000

How will your project evolve over the next three years?

The evolution of PlayPlanet will be driven by the players and improved by keeping in constant close communication each other. Users dictate PlayPlanet evolution.

Thus, we will evolve in the next order based on the feedback from the users:
1) Determine objectives
2) Identify and resolve needs
3) Development and testing
4) Planning the next iteration

PlayPlanet scales up as a hub for sustainable travel to revitalize communities and empower people travel better together. We will improve communication through social network service and expend its coverage and secure sustainability as an enterprise creating economical value as well as social value.

What barriers might hinder the success of your project and how do you plan to overcome them?

1. Competitive market environment
Highly competitive market environment is the big barrier for social enterprises which have to create blended value, social and economic. PlayPlanet will create new niche market through new tour service never exist before and suggest new trend of travel.
Since PlayPlanet is the platform to solve restricted market access of sustainable tour players, securing finance sustainability itself means sustainability for local players and local communities. Thus, PlayPlanet will keep transforming social business model in order to find the best coping with the changes and attempt various disruptive revenue streams in order to create blended value

2. Difficulties to capture lasting interest of users
It is hard to attract and capture in users’ interests on the internet. Fun can change behavior and minds for better. PlayPlanet create killer contents - social networking: playful exploration, social designing itinerary: playful building, and self organization: playful organizing – in order to lead users enjoy like fun game.

3. Possible prejudices against sustainable travel
People might think sustainable travel would be difficult and it make sacrifice. In order to break such prejudices and approach to users close, PlayPlanet empowers travelers and locals by offering inspiring user experience.

Tell us about your partnerships

D.I.W.O (Do It With Others): Collaborate, Cooperate, and Co-create in creative ways to foster sustainable travel

Players will meet with locals while sharing and producing local tour information, designing itineraries, giving and taking feedback, and in general traveling together. In the end players and users are the same through collaboration, cooperation and co-creation.

To amplify the synergy for creative innovation, PlayPlanet would have not only travelers and local tour operators but also various partners like governments, technology providers, NGOs and NPOs, for profit businesses, and academia. With government, PlayPlanet could do campaign to raise awareness of it and it can expand the impact scope for PlayPlanet business too. Technology providers are key partners into creating and improving platform. They will lead technical innovation through a better user experience system to raise its participation. NGOs and NPOs are the very partners that can share social agenda and tackle social problems together. And some of them will be local players on the platform. Also, PlayPlanet could do joint projects for profit business and provide the pool for sustainable travel information to academia and inversely it could help the platform with the result of these studies.

Explain your selections

Program development & maintenance
Platform management
Fixed costs

How do you plan to strengthen your project in the next three years?

1. Getting more users
PlayPlanet develop user friendly system.
-More Fun. More Attention. More Impact.
If the system is fun, more people will come to try it.
Increase awareness by word of mouth thanks to efficient and friendly usability.
- Easy. Efficient. Economic.
If the system is easy, the current user will keep playing sustainable travel on the platform and giving positive reviews and generate revenue as well as greater social impacts.

2. Flexible Business Model
PlayPlanet transforms social business model in order to be flexible in responding to changing environment.

3. Achievement of independent financial ground
PlayPlanet diversify financial resources with wide partnership, encourage work as independent entity and task force for venturous project, and potentially grow as independent social venture.

Which barriers to employment does your innovation address?
Please select up to three in order of relevancy to your project.


Restricted access to new markets


Restrictive cultural norms


Lack of access to information and networks

Please describe how your innovation specifically tackles the barriers listed above.

Tourism’s capacity to create employment is one of the reasons behind its attraction. Through sustainable tourism, PlayPlanet allows people to self employ, as well as increase awareness about the local travel operators.

Since anybody who loves community and knows it well can be a major role in sustainable travel, PlayPlanet reaches to young people who cannot find the means to support themselves – for example, those who are having difficulties about unemployment and suffering from lack of access to opportunity such as education, information – by catalyzing (social) entrepreneurship through its own social networking, social designing and self organizing sustainable travel system.

Are you trying to scale your organization or initiative?
If yes, please check up to three potential pathways in order of relevancy to you.


Grown geographic reach: Global


Enhanced existing impact through addition of complementary services


Repurposed your model for other sectors/development needs

Please describe which of your growth activities are current or planned for the immediate future.

Since this project is on the idea phase, PlayPlanet is going to build hot tech team And PlayPlanet will discard mediocre working procedures and attempt to build new project-based work environment. This new model is to freely cross invisible borders and provide more creative environment for employees since PlayPlanet is travel platform reaching all over the world and social creativity is essential for problem solving for better world.

With hot tech team, PlayPlanet is going to build prototype and develop it getting feedback and keeping retrying. And the first target geographical reach will be Asia.

Do you collaborate with any of the following: (Check all that apply)

Government, Technology providers, NGOs/Nonprofits, For profit companies, Academia/universities.

If yes, how have these collaborations helped your innovation to succeed?

D.I.W.O (Do it with others)

PlayPlanet would collaborate with various partners to amplify the synergy for creative innovation. PlayPlanet could do campaign to raise awareness about it. Technology providers would be partners into creating and improving the platform. They will lead technical innovation through better user experience system to raise its participation. NGOs and NPOs are the very partners that can share social agenda and tackle social problems together. PlayPlanet could do joint projects for profit businesses. PlayPlanet will provide the pool for sustainable travel information to academia and inversely it can help by generating results for other studies.