We recently caught up with Rui Dias, the co-founder, and manager of Get Bus based in Portugal. As the name suggests, Get Bus, which has a .eu domain name, is a transportation shuttle service providing customers with affordable transportation from Porto airport to Braga and Guimaraes.
The Get Bus journey began when Rui was studying abroad at university. The student turned travel entrepreneur discovered a gap in the market for his business. Unlike in his hometown, there were no shuttle services available and cars were the only method of transport. For many people, including students, he thought there had to be a better way!
It was bus vs. car
But how do you start a bus shuttle service with no experience in the sector especially given the fact that such a business doesn’t start itself and the starting route would appear rather complicated! As any good entrepreneur does, Rui began researching the possibility of creating a shuttle bus business by utilising the skills of a friend. His colleague, a family friend and fellow student, had previous experience in the transportation industry.
Next was understanding where the demand would be. Rui discovered that Porto airport was seeing an influx of passengers, so he used this location as the basis of his business plan and soon after presented it to his business partners.
Initially, the locations of Braga and Guimaraes were chosen because these regions have a long history of people movement and thus, provided opportunity due to the Portuguese diaspora. However, as the scope of the company expanded, it later developed to also include those that go to the country for work or leisure.
Going international with a .eu domain from GoDaddy
Despite the foundations of the business plan focusing on local business, Rui said that they always wanted to be equipped to “go international” and target the tourism industry. The businesses needed a name that was transposable between markets, thus everyone was on board with ‘Get Bus.’
For any growing business, a website and a strong presence on the internet is incredibly important. During the website building stages, Rui sought a lot of advice on the best route to get a home online and found his idea domain name with GoDaddy. With Rui’s desire to go international, the .eu domain was a clear choice, offering plenty of scope for expansion into other countries and markets, but always showing his European identity.
“70% of customers consult our website before travelling”
Today, Rui is clear his .eu domain company website, getbus.eu is an essential source of information for all of his customers.
The website enables him to provide answers to all FAQs and provide access to a timetable for the shuttle bus services. Additionally, it provides a source of income as customers can purchase tickets through his website, enabling a fluid consumer journey.
As the brand has started to growl, Rui is starting to incorporate further features into his website, including a blog which will dedicate content towards local universities, points of interest and stadium information.
‘The Road to Success’ with a .eu domain
Although Rui started his businesses without a deep knowledge in the transportation industry, 6 years on he is proud of his achievements and his business success. Key to the growth of the business has been ‘altering consumer perceptions’ from the reliance on cars. Now he adopts the tagline “Porto Airport is closer to your home”.
The .eu awards
Since buying his .eu domain from GoDaddy, Rui told us how he had entered Get Bus into the .eu web awards, a prestigious competition which looks to celebrate the 4 million business owners behind the .eu domain. The business has been nominated as a finalist in “The Leaders” category. A category which highlights websites that represent an established national business.
You can find out more about Rui and the other nominees at the Web Awards website.