Gap in the market inspires new camping website
A new software product from a Belfast company aims to double the number of campers and caravanners opting to holiday in Northern Ireland.
The makers of GoCampingNI.com say they hope it could become as essential on a trip to the countryside as tents, pegs, pots and pans and will create three new full and part-time programming jobs in Belfast.
The real-time, secure online booking system allows customers to browse multiple sites and dates, linking directly with the campsite owner's reservation system to book sites.
The business is a spin-off from the CampManager product – launched with support from Invest NI in 2010 – a park management and online booking system with hundreds of sites and clients across the UK, Ireland and Europe. Founder Andrew Norris (27) said he uncovered a gap in the marketplace for a professional camping, vacation planning and booking system while inter-railing several years ago on a year out from Queen's.
"I discovered that the camping and caravanning industry as a whole operated with historic paper-based booking systems which meant double bookings were rife," he said.
"As a result of this chance discovery CampManager was born.
"Our new venture, GoCampingNI.com, utilises the CampManager platform and for the first time offers a simple, safe, 100% real-time secure booking system for sites in NI."