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Explore Buffalo

Discover how a non-profit provides tours to discover Buffalo’s great architecture, history, and neighborhoods.

“These days, we don’t have to worry about the additional cost that comes with organizational growth – we don’t need to increase our capacity just to support more patrons. With its easy-to-use features, and comprehensive tools, VBO Tickets has given us the ability to serve more people, better. Other nonprofits wonder how we’ve been able to increase our engagement so much over the past couple of years without being overwhelmed – VBO Tickets the answer.”

Brad Hahn – Executive Director,


Explore Buffalo

Explore Buffalo is a non-profit organization focused on sharing the beauty and rich history of its historic namesake city. Volunteer docents offer year-round tours and educational programming, inspiring patrons to explore Buffalo’s great architecture, landmarks, and neighborhoods. With over 90 tour options to choose from, Explore Buffalo is committed to providing adventurous and informative experiences to tourists and students of all ages.


The Challenge


When searching for a ticketing platform, Explore Buffalo knew the were in for a challenge. As a volunteer-led nonprofit with numerous weekly engagement opportunities for patrons – from workshops to tours – the needs of the organization were unique. During their search for the right software, Explore Buffalo found that many companies could support the sale of tickets, but most didn’t provide features to sell and manage memberships. And, conversely, many companies that offered membership management components, didn’t include a robust ticketing system – complete with timed and conditional features, real-time reporting, as well as cloud-based functionality. Explore Buffalo was looking for an all-in-one package, competitively priced to fit within their limited budget, but exhaustive enough to allow for volunteer access to tour guest lists, mobile scanning capabilities, and CRM tools, while also providing ways to sell multiple variations of tickets, memberships, gift certificates and more.


The Solution


Understanding the specific desires of this dynamic organization, VBO Tickets quickly worked to meet every need had by Explore Buffalo. Our cloud-based technology allowed Explore Buffalo to update their system to sell tickets directly from their website, while also giving customers the opportunity to purchase and send gift certificates without requiring any support from box office staff. Our timed ticketing features with real-time reporting features meant that patrons could easily sign up for different tours without worrying about overlapping time frames or oversold tours. Offering a vast array of membership and subscription options, Explore Buffalo was also immediately equipped to sell passes to patrons, be it for numerous tours or an entire season. Most importantly, VBO Tickets’ event manager tool allowed Explore Buffalo to give their volunteer docents and educators a means to login and view guest lists for every experience and workshop, providing a seamless way to check-in patrons and manage tours.


The Results


Thanks to VBO Tickets’ support, Explore Buffalo was given the ability to achieve their goals for growth and fundraising over the past 3 years of partnership – increasing the number of patrons they serve by nearly 30%, doubling the number of annual passes sold, and offering a variety of new tours and educational programming. Prior to working with VBO Tickets, Explore Buffalo’s limited staff members were consumed with managing each and every box office need – from ticket sales to the mailing of gift certificates. Now, that’s to the platform’s automated functions, and user-friendly tools, Explore Buffalo employees are able to focus their energy on caring for customers who need a little extra support and growing their efforts to foster appreciation for the wonderful city they serve.

Courtesy of Explore Buffalo.

VBO Tickets quickly worked to meet every need had by Explore Buffalo

Courtesy of Explore Buffalo.