The Digitalization of tourism towards Smart Cities


22 March, 2021

The Digitalization of tourism towards Smart Cities

The city of Salamanca, through Tourism of Salamanca, have promoted the online marketing of tourist services,  supporting the sector by promoting online business and digital channels, the virtual tour and the digitalization of informational content. The new Salamanca Tourism APP, developed together with GVAM, has received the ‘Digital Tourist 2020’ Tourism Offer Innovation Award, organized by AMETIC with the support of SEGITTUR and the Smart Tourist Destinations Network.

Therefore, we wanted to show the city’s experience in the framework of the digitization of tourism and future forecasts in the sector. Below, we share the exclusive interview with the Salamanca Tourism team:


How do you see the future of the digitization of tourism?

State of the art technologies are going to become the main ally for the tourist market to regain activity. We must adapt to new ways of interacting with visitors, closer and in real time to lead the digital transformation of destinations and improve their competitiveness and sustainability.


How is the public acceptance of the new version of the Salamanca Tourism APP and its new features?

From Turismo de Salamanca we have opted for the Salamanca Turismo APP as an important tool for tourists who are in the city. With it, the tourist has access to the cultural resources of the city and its connection with its public and private tourist businesses, which contributes to the revitalization of this sector with a view to the recovery of visitors.

Visits to the city are safer with the App, which this year has included two new features that allow us to adapt and normalize tourist uses in the city after the COVID-19 pandemic through an innovative audio system for guided groups and using measurement and location functions to detect potential crowds. Even though the flow of visitors is still weak, the App has had a very good acceptance among users.


What has it meant to launch the new Salamanca Tourism news in such a complicated year and challenges as specific as those that have arisen in 2020?

The impact of Covid-19 has made evident the need to offer initiatives capable of transmitting confidence to the traveler. In this scenario and on this road to recovery, technology is one of the great allies of the tourism sector that seeks to resurface on the basis of digitization, sustainability and accessibility.

The new version of the tourism APP has allowed us to continue leading the implementation of DTI technologies (Smart Tourist Destinations) while maintaining our commitment to tourism quality.

Thanks to this new version of its Tourism APP, Salamanca remains at the forefront of inland cultural destinations in terms of technology, dynamic promotion of the tourism sector and in the implementation of reliable solutions for the new post-COVID normality.


What response does the Salamanca Tourism APP solution offer for the current times of pandemic?

The guided groups can continue to operate, with all the comforts, through the use of each visitor’s mobile phone as a device to display multimedia content. In addition, it is possible to activate subtitles in other languages to improve the experience and the monitoring of groups of different nationalities.

On the other hand, we can know in real time the GPS location of groups and individual visitors and thus avoid possible crowds. This system allows to activate automated messages to mobile phones that are in these locations.

Forecasts for a future full of uncertainties

Although it is true that we are facing a new year with a high degree of uncertainty, Salamanca Tourism maintains the digital transformation as one of the fundamental pillars of its strategic tourism plan and some of the actions for 2021 are in line with the Tourist Offices of the 21st century, tourist signs and smart totems.


What will be the main challenges and opportunities for tourism in Salamanca from now on?

The main challenges will be the creation of new content with which to continue advancing in online marketing. We will work on the design of products suitable for marketing, promoting a greater relationship, a closer relationship with marketing professionals, both wholesalers and retailers.

Along with this, the communication and promotion of heritage, natural and archaeological tourist resources. We will also promote the mobility of tourists and the flow of people to expand the areas of interest, which in the case of our city are wide.

In your opinion, what do you think will be the keys for Spanish cities to face 2021?

We face this year with a clear commitment towards the development of digitization to provide digital communication, promotion, and marketing services.

Always keeping in mind the safety of people and looking for new safe and trustworthy proposals, taking advantage of the organization of small groups in the different heritage spaces and natural resources.

We will continue to promote online by relying on the future intelligent platform that will give us this support. As well as the improvement of the tourism product through smart signage.

And we will work to achieve a unique offer from the point of view of demand, an offer to small groups with technology proposals and new stories.