It all started with our love of having junk boat parties ! This is indeed one of the iconic activities to do in Hong Kong.
However the organisation of such events is challenging. It involves a lot of manual processes and is time consuming.
As an organiser, you have to contact many different agents via whatsapp or visit their website where it's almost impossible to book the boats advertised at the prices that are shown. You finally end up receiving scarce quotations at different days from different channels (emails, phone calls, WhatsApp, ...) which you need to consolidate.
This usually takes quite a bit of effort and by the time you start to have one or two quotations on your list, you are already being asked to confirm quickly otherwise the boats may get booked by another person. Moreover, these last 2 years many more people enjoyed Junk boat parties as quarantine policies made a lot of us postpone plans of holidays abroad and stay in Hong Kong looking for other entertainments. Junk boats became even more popular and boats were fully booked months in advance, making it even more difficult to organise!
We thought that this whole experience needed to be simplified and optimised to address the following points:
1. Firstival, from an organiser point of view, websites showing a list of boats with unrealistic prices and no information about availability are useless. What matters is firm prices for available boats.
2. Quotations should be received quickly in a consolidated way to allow the event organizer to have a real choice of boats and enough time to make a decision. The ship owner must be able to reply quickly to customer quotation orders and any intermediate steps should be automated.
3. Payment processes must be automated. Indeed, bank transfers are really a pain to manage.
4. Once the boat is booked, the organiser needs tools to manage his events. But this deserves to be covered in its own blog post.
This is how we finally realised that only an app would be able to address the complexity of these tasks.
And thus was born Junkingly, the first and - as of the date of writing this article - only app exclusively made for junk boat booking for groups in Hong Kong.