Beyond COVID-19: tourism transformed in Singapore

The Singapore Tourism Board (STB) is leveraging Augmented Reality as well as building analysis and data capacities to help the local industry withstand challenging times. 

Acting Singapore Tourism Board CEO, Poh Chi Chuan, agrees with his Prime Minister, Lee Hsien Loong, that the COVID-19 pandemic is a crisis of a generation: “It will have long-term implications on our life,” he explained at ITB Asia 2020 Virtual’s digital conference.

Pessimism, however, is not STB’s mantra. The organisation considers the crisis an opportunity to boost the digital age for the travel industry,
leading changes with new initiatives. “Our objective is to help and prepare the tourism industry for this new world,” said Chuan.

To face the main paradigm shift of getting from a contact-centric tourism to a digital one for the time being, STB is launching three initiatives.

Augmented Reality (AR) technology is being launched over the coming month to leverage digital content. “The technology does not require much investment. Our in-house developers are working to turn into AR 1,000 items related to our Singapore icons, cultural assets and our heritage. An AR curriculum will also be taught at tech college,” the STB acting CEO said.

A second initiative is to enhance industry capacity to evaluation and ultimately transformation; The “Tourism Transformation Index TXI” is a self-diagnostic tool for companies to assess their strength by analysing customers’ behaviour. It will also help companies to know how they fare in answering customers’ wishes and where there is a need to improve.

Launched last April, STAN (Singapore Tourism Analytics Network) capacities will be further enhanced with new analysis features. An e-learning platform is also being developed to “help tourism stakeholders better understand the value of data,” stressed Chuan.

Photo: Singapore – © 2019 – Barnes / Cleverdis