Nick DiMatteo is the CEO & Founder of Nomadico Travel, a socially responsible travel company offering tours in South Peru and Ecuador. With six year’s experience in sales and marketing, a degree in Sustainable Development and a minor in Anthropology, having travelled to over 20 countries and fluent in Spanish, the entrepeneur talks to Laura The Explorer about sustainable travel, the charm of South America and the power of local insight.
What inspired you to start Nomadico Travel?
I have always been fascinated by the myriad of cultures and civilisations in the world. I wanted to give people the opportunity to travel the world and learn about the diverse traditions and communities in the world. I started Nomadico Travel to provide people a sustainable alternative to mass, cookie cutter tours. Instead, our trips are small, customised and give you an authentic insight into the heart of the country, the people, food, history, culture and environment.
What made you choose South America as a place to start these tours?
It’s best to start with your area of expertise. I speak Spanish and have traveled extensively through Latin America. I started with Peru and Ecuador because each country has so much history and interesting adventures to do. People have the opportunity to visit the Galapagos, hike the Inca trail or stay at a remote Amazon lodge.
You pride yourselves on being able to offer holidays that immerse the visitor in local cultures and activities. How you do this?
Nomadico Travel gives our travelers a chance to interact with the local communities we visit in an authentic way. You might visit a school, meet with local artisans, or have a cooking lesson with a local chef. Our adventures are really tailored to people’s interests. Because our groups are small and we have expert local guides who know the communities very well, we can give you the unique opportunity to really immerse yourself in the local culture and environment.
What has been the best piece of local advice you’ve received when travelling?
When I travel, I love to always ask the locals where they like to eat and what they would recommend I do. I like getting the insider’s perspective and going to places where usually I am the only American. I integrate some of these local insights into the trips that we create to give travellers an authentic experience. My advice is to always listen to the locals because they know best.
Could you tell us how you help local businesses through your work?
We absolutely support local businesses. Our tour guides are from the local communities so they offer an authentically local perspective to our travellers. We use locally owned hotels and restaurants so the profits go back to the community. Nomadico Travel also works with two community-owned ecolodges in the Ecuadorian rainforest. Some of the profits go back to support community education and healthcare initiatives and they employ the local indigenous communities. These are all examples of how Nomadico Travel supports local businesses and workers via sustainable tourism.
You work with charities such as The International ecotourism Society and the Rainforest Alliance. Why these charities?
We are members of Rainforest Alliance and International Ecotourism Society because we believe in and practice the principles of ecotourism. Sustainable tourism is really important to Nomadico Travel. We are also looking to partner with local NGO’s and non-profits to support the communities and environments we visit.
What has been the biggest challenge of your career so far?
I challenge myself to trust my employee’s opinion and not to micro-manage. When you are the CEO, you cannot do everything. You have to hire the experts and let them excel at what they do best.
Why should people choose your company when booking a holiday to Ecuador or Peru?
Our company is very reputable. We have incredible guides who are experts in the field. We pride ourselves in offering safe adventures that create life-time memories. If you want a personalised, unique experience to Ecuador or Peru, you should choose Nomadico Travel.
If you had to pick one of your tour to go on, which would it be any why?
I would love to do the Inca Trail. I love to hike and the views are absolutely breathtaking. People love the Inca trail and it is for a great reason. Peru is an incredible country. I love the rich culture and Incan history.
Any plans for the future?
Grow Nomadico Travel and explore the world.