Joburg Tourism has unveiled a new Visitor Information Centre (VIC) in Nelson Mandela Square, as well as an updated, fresh website and a mobi-app.
The Tourism Unit within the Department of Economic Development’s strategic objective is to promote Johannesburg towards being the number one African destination of choice for both business and leisure in an effort to:
- Improve seasonality, length of stay and tourist spend during visits to Joburg.
- Improve the diversity of the tourism offering in Joburg.
- Build a positive image / perception for the city among local, national and international audiences.
“In line with the prioritisation of achieving increased visitor arrivals in the city and contributing towards the economic growth target of 5% by 2021, Joburg Tourism seeks ways of increasing its presence and footprint throughout Gauteng, at various strategic locations, which includes Nelson Mandela Square.
The new VIC is situated in the heart of Sandton, Africa’s most iconic square mile, and ideally placed for both business and leisure travellers, who are key to contributing towards growth targets outlined by the City’s administration.
“According to the Liberty Group report (Two Degree, released on 06/09/2017), Sandton has an annual average foot traffic in excess of 24 million, hence it serves as the perfect location for the new VIC,” says Cllr Leah Knott, MMC for Economic Development at the City of Johannesburg. Joburg Tourism also currently operates a satellite VIC at Park Station.
Thus far, Joburg Tourism`s operations are guided by the City’s 10 Priority Implementation Plans (PIPs). The Tourism department contributes significantly to two of them, namely: 5% Economic Growth and Job Creation – reducing unemployment to under 20% by 2021.
The launch of the VIC is also an opportune time to unveil the upgraded, interactive Joburg Tourism website and the new Mobile App – which also present opportunities for tourism-related businesses (SMMEs) to list or verify their details and benefit from the exposure the site will provide and other related marketing initiatives.
Joburg Tourism Website and Mobi App Overview
One of Joburg Tourism’s core mandates is to provide online tourism information, along with online SMME and association support. In order to embrace international technological trends and to remain competitive in the digital sphere, Joburg Tourism has developed a mobile app, while also redeveloping its website to be more user friendly, appealing and to make it mobi-friendly. The website will be launching as www.visit.joburg
In order to keep up with technological trends Joburg Tourism has developed a mobile app. The key difference between the website/mobi-site and the mobi app are that the website/mobi is not location based, has more information such as news articles, general information about Joburg, business registration, interactive regional map etc. The mobiApp is downloadable and installed as a mobile application and only contains essential listing and location information that a traveler will use whilst he is travelling. The mobi-app has some of the following functions:
- Downloadable from Play Store and IPhone
- Interactive with smartphone devices
- Location based product listings (Location settings needs to be switched on)
- Distance to various product listings
- Provides nearest places of interest
- Personalized trip and itinerary planner (Login required)
- Add to favorites
- Events feed which alerts visitor of new events
- Ability to share listings via various channels e.g. WhatsApp, Social Media, Email, Pinterest etc.
- Rate and establishment
- Write reviews
- Google map view which opens up Google GPS to navigate to product listing
- Call establishment directly (Dials directly from device)
- View travel packages
The key difference between the Visit Joburg mobi-app compared to other destination applications is that any business can register to be on the Joburg Tourism database through the membership database platform and add their tourism packages. Once listed, the listing will automatically appear on the website, mobi-site and Mobile App. This is especially beneficial for an SMME product owner to be able to promote their offerings on all platforms and devices.