I’ve met Teras twice, both times at the Las Vegas Star Trek Convention I tend to attend annually. Teras is the founder of Geek Nation Tours, taking fans of all genres from board gaming conventions to Game Of Thrones filming locations plus a number of secret spots designed for the geekiest of hearts. I love the concept and Teras was kind enough to answer a few questions about Geek Nation Tours. Ka’plah!
Where did you come up with the idea for Geek Nation Tours?
Geek Nation Tours is really a child of the recession – when it hit the travel industry ground to a halt. My travel agencies we doing poorly and I was stuck in the office with a lot of time on my hands. I was reading a favorite author at the time – a wargamer by the name of Donald Featherstone – and I came across one of his books called The Battlefield Walker’s Handbook. It was a description of the battlefields he had visited over his life. I was also very immersed in geek culture – reading comics, watching films and playing games when I realized that I could put all my travel experience (some 25 years or more) into creating very specific geek filled vacations. We started off with two – a wargaming tour of the UK and a trip to the San Diego Comic Con. Both we very successful and GNT was born.
The Battlefield Walker’s Handbook
Where around the world do your tours go and what’s the international makeup of a given group?
GNT has been to the UK, USA, Japan and several other countries. We are expanding our Geek coverage and will move to the Mediterranean, across Asia, many other parts of Europe and even Africa.
What are some of the geekiest stops along your tours?
Well Star Trek fans often get the wrap at being the most geeky. They are not – they are just the most accepting. With that said stopping at Trek sites in costume always raises an eyebrow (appropriate in a way) but really people are even more interested about what is going on. I remember showing up at the Tillman Water Reclamation Plant with half the tour in costume and a passerby asked if it had any Star Trek connection. I stopped him and said that is Starfleet Academy. He turned around and went white. “OMG” is all he said.
You’ve mentioned you’re going to double the number of tours in 2015; what are the most popular ones fueling your success?
We will have tonnes coming! Doctor Who, Sherlock, Game of Thrones, UK literary tour, Vid Con and even a Zombie tour. Our board gaming ones are very popular as are our battlefield ones.
Lastly, what’s one fictional location you wish you could give a tour of?
I have always been interested in warrior culture so it would have to be Kronos (Q’onoS by some) – the Klingon home world.
Thank you Teras! You can check out Geek Nation Tours to see all Teras has coming up as well as follow Geek Nation Tours on Facebook and Twitter @GeekNationTours. Vulcans, elves, and other intergalactic races from most dimensions welcome.
What a great niche concept for a business, fantastic idea. I suspect this is very much an untapped market so fair play for thinking up these tours. I also dare say that due to the specific nature of the tours they are not quite as price sensitive as a beach holiday during a downturn.
That’s a good point and from what I know of Star Trek’s audience (for that particular niche) it tends to be a group with an higher than average income.
Thank you Anil for the article! The Geeks that come aboard our tours are socially and financially successful. They love what they love and are happy to share that. We are only too pleased to help create mini communities along the way for people of like mind to share the love.
Really that is what we are really based on…
Teras I Cassidy
Geek Nation Tours
Thank you Teras! I love the enthusiasm of geeks whatever they’re in to and really like the combination of it with travel.
On a side note, if that bridge is what I think it is on the last photo, it looked much higher up in the film 😉
That is indeed the bridge that killed Kirk… Paramount gave it to the park when they were done filming and park moved it to the location you now see. The other locations of Veridian III are there too… Any THEY are much higher….
Geek Nation Tours
What a unique concept that is definitely say thinking outside the box. Tapping into a market that I haven’t heard of much. Great stuff