Hip Tour Guides? by Ellen
April 17, 2009, 1:23 am
Filed under: CHAFF

I came up with a extremely brilliant business plan the other day (which is inspired by a conversation with my muse Harriet) and I am hoping to take it on Dragon’s Den. My opening gambit (for humors sake) will be to ask for an unfeasible large amount of money for a minute percentage, before alerting them to the fact they are upper class. After that I will launch straight into my genius business plan.

My idea..

You go to a cool city somewhere in the world, New York, London, Berlin, Northumbria…whatseva… you are on a holiday.  You get to the city with your tatty little guidebook and you search desperately for some information on something which extends beyond “a good bar.”

You wanna know where the most florally romantic mexican restaurants are! The best cowboy themed child friendly bars! The second hand book shops with the most amount of out of print point horrors! Dammit you want the hidden gems!

Well what if there was a secret underground group of people with this knowledge who are only recognizable by a specific item of clothing, e.g funny sloganed t shirt?

What if they are in certain areas of the city at given times waiting to give you advice on the best places to go? Would that not be really good? But what are they’re qualifications I hear you ask? They are the hip people of the town! They have hung around looking cool for a few years and they can share their tips with you!

You get a free vitamin water (sponsorship pending) with each piece of advice.

They would also like art and film and that so they can pass out information on cultural stuff too, but if in doubt they might answer “museum.”

This would a strictly secret underground thing, so not everyone would know about it, therefore when you sign up for the service you get given the code word or phrase e.g “nice weather we’re having,” to tell the guide so they know your legit. 

If they can’t recommended the best erotic cake shop with in five minutes walking distance, they can just ring a buddy who will know, or another hip guide who specializes in that type of thing.

I think this is the best idea I have had in the past ten minutes. 

(there is some elements of seriousness in this idea, it has potential, sort of…maybe…) 

Thank you



6 Comments so far
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How would they be licensed? As we cool people all know, hipness is such a hard quality to measure.

Also, people like serial killers and child pornography enthusiasts (or just people who really hate hip people) might be able to exploit the system. All they’d need is to know the disguise and the secret code and they’d be able to lead people into all sorts of sketchy scenarios. You’d definitely need some sort of identification system that wouldn’t interfere with the tour guides’ hipness.

GOOD IDEA THOUGH! Of course it’s going to be tricky finding a balance between coolness and safety, but I’d invest.

Comment by michael

i had the same idea when i was backpacking! the problem is, though, would a hip person really admit to being hip? shouldn’t they just elusively disappear into the pavement like a phantom? but once you had managed to recruit them and assemble identifiable t-shirts/badges in sinister-cult-type-fashion, it would surely be the best thing ever.
my idea also involved an underground hostel/hotel for people who were discombobulated and in need of obscurity where you could gather and make like-minded friends and spread the word around in some sort of code/dance

Comment by maddy

I’m out

Comment by Ally

whoa, Michael, way to be a downer. perhaps if you found out that your guide only wanted to show you the best secluded spots by the river, or the darkest alleys, you might figure not to use that one.

Comment by Julia

Or you can just meet hip people wherever you go. Once you gain trust of one friend, they’ll refer you to other friends you can trust in other cities. That way you’re not always going to the touristy places that are in the books.

If anyone is ever in Southern California again (LA, San Diego, Santa Barbara), this hipster is happy to assist with some good tips.

Comment by PlayaDelWes

my lovely ellen…my computer is filled with copious notes on such a thing. let’s collaborate when/if you get back to the ‘diff. x

Comment by ladyadventurer

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