Monday, April 13, 2015

Albay tourism goes digital

DARAGA, Albay, April 11 (PNA) -- The provincial government of Albay and Smart Telecommunications Inc. (Smart) once again joined hands -- this time, in the launch of digital tourism for Albay on Friday afternoon at the historic church of Nuestra SeƱora de Porteria, which lies atop the St. Maria Hill in this town, with the majestic Mayon Volcano at the background.

The partnership made Albay the first province in the Philippines to have digital tourism.

The occasion was led by Albay Governor Joey Sarte Salceda; Jose FL. Rosete, Smart external relations manager for Luzon; representatives from the National Historical Commission and the Catholic church; Albay provincial and Daraga and Camalig municipal officials; tourism officers; media and other sectoral group representatives.

Salceda said digital tourism is the third collaborative project of the province with Smart: first is the Info Board with 15,000 subscribers and the second is Pindot.

He said the first two mobile applications are both part of the Disaster Risk Reduction and Management (DRRM) Program of Albay.

The DRRM expert called the Albay Guide free mobile application a magical tourism technology of Smart in the province of Albay.

"This is a concrete proof of the continuously rising level of the tourism industry in the province," he claimed.

Salceda said that as a free mobile application, one can see in just one press at his Android cellphone the needed information about tourism in Albay, thus, serving a handy tourism guide to the province.

He said the free apps Albay Guide will further enhance the level of the state of the tourism industry in Albay by making people in and outside the country more aware of the tourist destinations and amenities in the province.

This, the Albay provincial chief executive said, will further enhance the quality of service of the local tourism industry players and the level of customer satisfaction.

"We expect greater customer satisfaction through greater information and, thus, more repeat customers, while broadening our access to tourism markets," Salceda added.

For his part, Rosete disclosed that Albay is the first province in the country to have digital tourism while among cities only Baguio, Cebu and IloIlo have.

He said Smart and Albay have long been partners in progress and in this project, which, he said, is part of Smart's corporate social responsibility, the company has allotted a lot of money, which he did not mention.

The Smart official claimed that any network provider can download the Albay Guide free mobile application -- however, only through an Android cellphone unit.(PNA) JBP/FGS/NIM/CBD/pjn