New Concept of Microfinance Tours

“Easy, Simple, Powerful. Come travel and change lives!” What more can you ask for?  The slogan of the new microfinance organization Investours, which is pioneering the concept of “microfinance tours,” combines microfinance and tourism.  I’ve got to say, this is a pretty amazing concept. So far, Investours has only only done a pilot in Oaxaca, Mexico and has recently launched a second program in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.  How does Investours work?  Here are the five simple steps:

1. Sign up for an Investour. 100% of your fee will be used for the loan given to the borrowers whom you visit.
2. Visit a developing community, meet multiple groups of women entrepreneurs, and learn about their small businesses
3. After a discussion with your tour group, select a group of entrepreneurs to receive the loan
4. Track the progress of your borrower group
5. Join our alumni network and continue to be involved with Investours

I’m really excited about this new concept for microfinance.  I’m not quite sure how scalable it is, but so far it seems to be a great concept.  Microfinance is still on the rise, but people are always traveling, so if they can penetrate tourism on a grander scale, this could have a lot of potential. I hope it does!

About Jerry Ostradicky

I work in Advertising Operations at Zillow, but LOVE microfinance. I'm always interested in startups, especially non-profits, reach out to me if you're working on anything cool!
  • Since those who visit in person and see microfinance with their own eyes are often the largest donors, there’s quite a bit of value if they handle all the logistics of scheduling the visits with partner MFIs and can arrange for an increased number of people to visit MFIs.

    MFIs like Esperanza spent quite a bit of time, money, and resources on planning & coordinating their donor visits, so coordination with the partner on the ground will have to be quite extensive. It’s not a totally scaleable model, but still a cool ass concept.