Smart travel apps bring great benefits to local tourism

By DA NANG Today / DA NANG Today
January 07, 2019, 11:48 [GMT+7]

Grasping the growing trend of using digital technologies amongst the travel-fanatic community, Da Nang’s tourism industry has focused on launching information technology (IT) apps in a bid to increase the number of tourist self-service tools and information channels, hereby better serving tourists from both home and aboard.

By using the smart travel apps, self-sufficient travellers can develop their own travel schedules.
By using the smart travel apps, self-sufficient travellers can develop their own travel schedules.

Mr Nguyen Anh Tuan, an independent tourist from Ha Noi said, upon his recent arrival in Da Nang, he used the Danang FantastiCity chatbot and mobile app to organise his own tours.

“Instead of asking my friends or receptionists at my hotel for useful tourism information, I just used these smart travel apps for whatever information I want to know about the city. They are greatly useful for self-sufficient travellers like me,” said Tuan.

Danang FantastiCity chatbot, the first of its kind in Viet Nam, is attached to the Danang FantastiCity fanpage. Accessing it simply involves typing ‘Danang FantastiCity’ on Facebook or visiting https://visitdanang.com.vn/vi/. Users can also quickly scan the code at tourist centres of popular destinations without downloading it.

The application allows visitors to search key information on attractions, things to do, events, accommodation, cuisine, Automatic Teller Machines (ATM), public rest-stops, necessary hotlines, weather forecasts, and other Good-to-know information.

Notably, Danang FantasiCity chatbot boasts more optimised features compared with conventional ones. Included are signature mascots, the newly- added Event Countdown. It helps tourists avoid missing out on any on-going or future events, E-coupon with real-time discount information, good integration with various social networking sites, and notifications of upcoming events.

According to Ms Nguyen Thi Hoai An, the Deputy Director of the municipal Tourism Promotion Centre, Da Nang is one of the first 2 cities in the Southeast Asia region to have applied the chatbot into tourism.

Accordingly, users can make a request orally or by typing, and the chatbot will automatically and quickly find the right answer.

According to the latest statistics, since its debut in April, there have been a total of 21,271 chatbot application users, and this artificial intelligence app has supported visitors 285,914 times.

Noticeably, visitors from 16 countries and territories worldwide, including the USA, the UK, Canada, Australia, Philippines, Singapore, New Zealand, Russia, Hong Kong, China, South Korea, Japan, Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore and Indonesia have used this technology.

The total number of conversations through the chatbot on the Danang FantastiCity fanpage and website has increased by 150% month-on-month.

Besides, the peak time to use the chatbot is from 2.00pm to 8.00pm on Saturday and Sunday. In addition, there are more than 4,452 interactions with chatbot that take place from 9.00pm to 7.00am of the following day daily.

In addition to the chatbot, the Danang FantastiCity app has seen a total of more than 21,794 downloads. Developed by the municipal Tourism Promotion Centre and the city-based Gola Software company, the application can be operated by either IOS or Android systems in the 5 languages, namely Vietnamese, English, Chinese, Korean and Japanese.

The application provides visitors with databases about the city’s attractive tours and its popular attractions, along with any on-going tourism programmes.  Other helpful information about the local weather and accommodation establishments is also displayed.

The application can help its users make detailed travel plans for their trip to the city.  In particular, if they select their travel dates, budget, and hobbies, the application will automatically suggest suitable travel schedules. 

In particular, the app shows off outstanding features.  In detail, the ‘Event countdown’ gathers all information about event headings, time and detailed schedules of each and every happening in the city.

The ‘E-coupon’ is a promotion code used on mobile devices for hassle-free service order. Users can save information online on their martphones, and then prompt their phones to make calls, send emails and texts to any businesses to make orders.

Currently, multiple promotion packages are only available in the app, including discounts from local accommodation establishments, restaurants, spas and other services.  The new version is bound to be an ideal choice for bargain-hunting tourists.

Mr Nguyen Xuan Binh, the Deputy Director of the municipal Department of Tourism, highly appreciated the application of IT technologies in the management of tourism activities, and the building of automatic information search channels on the Danang FantastiCity chatbot and app in bringing the greater convenience to visitors arriving in the city.

Operating around the clock, these smart travel apps regularly offer the updated information, hereby helping visitors access “do-not-miss” events during their stay in the city.