By Saskia Horgan-Catchpole
Have you been to a hotel that sells crusty chicken nuggets and includes creaky fold out beds for kids? This is what prompted Bella Tipping to create Kidzcationz. Bella is a 12-year-old entrepreneur who vouches that one day all hotels will treat kids fairly and the same as adults.
In May 2014, Bella had the idea of Kidcationz, a website that allows members to rate, review and give feedback on particular places about their kid friendly options. Kids can log on, choose a venue and review, observe and rate the destination. The website also allows you to book holiday stays through expedia and contains images and past reviews from other members.
It is a kid friendly site as it doesn’t allow chats with strangers and kids’ personal information is not available to share.This website is the source of her success and the reason why she was able to guest star on the TV program The Today Show.
This website is considered to be a kids’ version of the popular review app TripAdvisor. It is meant to run along side with the major app as a separate option for kids.
What is it?
The idea came after Bella, who lives in Dubbo in New South Wales, went to America last year and felt that the disgusting behaviour to kids and kids meals at some hotels were something that she wanted to change.
She was tired of the microwaved kids meals, fold out beds and overall terrible service towards kids. Together with her mum, Bella came up with the idea of Kidzcationz and with the help of web designers, she developed the finished product which aired in September 2015.
She told us how it was difficult to find the right web designer, and that she has “worked really hard to get the business to where it is today”.
Bella excels in many subjects and hobbies including being a good public speaker, reader, writer, constant mathletics champion. She competed in her school’s debating team last year and may have to add web designer to that large list of achievements. The awards Bella has won for her work include the ‘Living is Giving Humanitarian Award’, ‘Catherine McCauley Compassion Award’ and her schools ‘Good Behaviour’ award.
In the near future Bella plans to introduce a comedic book about her dog Jed and his team of furry friends who go on missions. This idea came from her Instagram account called ‘Petcationz’ which is full of photos of her dog Jed. The book will be titled ‘Meet General Jed’ and is going to focus on all the missions Jed and his Petzforce get into. Bella would also like to introduce an gaming app and this app will be about Jed and his many quests and adventures.
Not all hard work comes without its troubles. Many people have doubted Bella and left nasty comments on her pages. Bella shrugs this off and has a laugh at some of the comments. As an advocate for kids she wants them to remember “if you can think it, you can do it”.
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“I want to change the way kids travel. I want restaurant owners to look beyond the chicken nuggets and chips on the kids menu and to make sure there venue is fun for all ages.”